Monday, May 30, 2011

Poor Clares Monastery

I was reading Fr Charles' blog, a friar minor, and he discussed how since it was the 800th Anniversary of St. Clare cutting her hair off and going to become a follower of St. Francis, there was a plenary indulgence issued for the occasion.  The details can be found here.  I happened to remember seeing a Poor Clare Monastery while taking Jake to Bee Tree Park.  I was in the general vicinity today with a friend and mentioned the indulgence.  Needless to say, we stopped by.

View From the Back Pew

St Clare

FYI:  I did take a picture of the schedule if you want more details.  There is Benediction on Sundays at 5 pm.  Oh.  And I'm pretty sure guys are allowed in the public chapel....

White House Retreat

Driving around today, I came across the White House Retreat center run by the Jesuits.


View from the Back Pew

Cave Chapel
There are relics of Jesuit Saints on the Altar.

I think it is St. Ignatius.
But it could be Jesus.

Pictures from Rome of the West

Sunday, May 29, 2011

St. Pius V

Hello.  Thank you to my many followers who sent me emails of support and encouragement.  Since my favorite place to go to Mass is on summer break, guess I'll keep going.

I had intended to go to another Our Lady church but I couldn't leave the Jakester by himself so long.  I was going to different church but when scoping out the Church discovered who was preaching this weekend and decided in the interest of Christian charity to go elsewhere.  I ended up attending the 10 am Mass at St. Pius V on South Grand.

St. Pius V is an older church that still has most of its old decorations.  Mass was nearly full and was full of many different ethnicities.  There were also many young families so Mass was a little on the loud side.

The music was accompanied by a choir and band (with tambourine!).  Instead of being in the choir loft, pews on the far left side in the front were taken out for the choir.  It was hard to hear the choir at times over the trumpet.
Gathering:  Lift Up Your Hearts
Mass Setting:  Mass of Glory
Preparation of the Gifts:  Worthy is the Lamb
Communion:  How Great Thou Art
Communion Meditation:  I Cannot Tell It All performed (yes I mean performed by the choir)  Spontaneous clapping occurred and then clapping afterwards.  Good thing I don't go for that praying thing after Communion.
Going Forth:  Christ the Lord is Risen Today!

There was a baptism!  The Church has a new member, Fiona!  YAY!!!!!!  Father sprinkled everyone.  I got drenched.

Father started off his homily talking about Mr. Rogers.  When Mr. Rogers was a young boy, he would get scared by some of the news stories.  His mother told him to look for the helpers.  Mr. Rogers was comforted by so many caring people in the world.  In any bad news or disaster, there is always someone helping.  We can see this in our lives.  Look for the helpers; they are a sign of Christ.  Christ was a helper.  Jesus promises not to leave us.  His promise is fulfilled in helpers.  We are called to be helpers.  We are called to be good.  Father then reminded us why the Sprinkling Rite is added in the Easter Season; to remind us of our Baptism.  It's summertime.  There is no downtime for being Christ or for being a helper.  Now is the time to help.  Helpers are a sign Christ is still present.  With Grace we can be helpers.

Father chanted the Opening Prayer, the Preface and the Consecration.  He used Eucharistic Prayer III and there were no bells.  At the end of Mass, Father asked us to bless the new parents, so we all saluted er blessed them.

There was a second collection for Joplin MO.


Achievements of Pope St. Pius V
Above Main Doors

St. Louis IX, St. Francis Cabrini, St. Vincent de Paul

St. Jean Vianney, Infant of Prague, St. Pius
(The statue of St. Jean Vianney is so old, it has Blessed on it!)

View from the Back Pew!

John Baptizing Jesus
In the old Baptistry, which is now a cry area

St. Cecilia
On the way to the choir loft

Angel on stairs to choir loft

Chapel for the Departed Souls

Station VIII

Betrothal/Wedding of Mary and Joseph





Flight into Egypt

Holy Family

Jesus in the Temple

Jesus and Mary



Upper Windows
They are in sets of 3.
The middle window is a Marian Symbol, in this case 2 birds.
The symbols on the left and right are symbols of saints.
The right is a crozier.
I'm not sure what the left is.

Website of St. Pius V
Pictures from Rome of the West

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Our Lady Help of Christians - Weingarten

It was a lovely day to drive out to the country and this being the month of May, dedicated to Our Lady, I headed out to Our Lady, Help of Christians in Weingarten which is out near Ste. Genevieve.

I attended the 10 am Mass on May 22.

The Church is very old and on the small size.

The music was accompanied by a choir in the choir loft.
Opening:  Sing A New Song
Offertory:  We Are Many Parts
Communion:  We Have Been Told
Closing:  All the Ends of the Earth

Father acted as lector as well.  He went through the community prayers, such as the Our Father and the Creed incredibly fast and I had a hard time keeping up.  He used Penitential Rite B and what I think was Eucharistic Prayer II but he ad-libbed much of it.  There were no bells at the Consecration.

Father's Homily was pretty long and seemed to meander a bit.  Father started off the homily by discussing how John was a master storyteller and is able to bring the story alive and show the full power of it.  Philip and Thomas, the dynamic duo, the Bobsey Twins (who???), speak on our behalf in the stories and represent us.  Jesus seems to be vague in this Gospel.  Where I am going, you know the way. Most people are mystified by this.  If we don't know the way and where we are going, how are do we get there.  Jesus says don't worry, He is the Way, the Truth and the Light (GPS = God Positioning He's always up to date).  There is no salvation except through Jesus.  Jesus is the only one that doesn't let us down (You said it Father)  He is the Truth; the only thing we can count on (Can I get an Amen!).  There is no life except through Jesus.  Philip and Thomas set the stage for the teachings of Jesus.  To see Jesus Christ is to see the Face of God.  Jesus has shown His Face to us countless times, we just don't see (well, if He'd get Facetime...)  We have a very active and hands-on God, whether we realize it or not.  Wake up and smell the spiritual coffee.  We are in the presence of God at all times.  We can't recognize God's answers unless we look with eyes of Faith.  Many times we act like God is not here.  We are ever the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit.

I don't know why, but this Mass depressed me even more for some reason.  So much so I'm considering quitting.  I just don't see a point any more.

Our Lady, Help of Christians

View From the Back Pew

Holy Water Font
It's made of rocks commonly found in the area.

Window above door

Christ Resurrected, Victorious 

Station VIII

Stained Glass Window
I liked the tie-dye/swirly colors.

Information from the Archdiocese
Pictures from Rome of the West

To Continue or Not to Continue

I am debating the wisdom of continuing this blog.  I'm not seeing much point in it anymore.  Then again, I'm not seeing much point in anything anymore.

When I started this blog, I had hoped to find a place I could fit in.  That was the original intent.  It has been almost 2 years.

It has been a horrendous week.  It looks as if the next 2 weeks and even the near future are going to be horrendous.  When things started to turn south at the beginning of the week, someone was like well I'm sure someone in your parish can be supportive.  I don't have a parish.  I don't have a home.

During the homily this morning, it became clear to me that I wasn't going to fit in anywhere and there was likely nowhere I could call home.

Perhaps this stems from being angry.  I am angry at myself.  I am angry at the Church.  I am angry with myself for disregarding 2000+ years of Tradition and teaching, thinking that I knew better.  After all, all those silly rules were put forth by men and what do they know about women?  What a fool I've been.  I've played with fire and I've been burned.  I am angry at the Church for not having better catechis.  It was easy for me to disregard the Teaching because I really didn't get it.  I think of the lost opportunities the Church had that might have made me come to my senses before I wrecked everything.  Of course, I could have understood the Teaching better and still made the same choices, but there's no way to know now.

I suppose it is time to come clean.  I left the Church for 10+ years.  Essentially, I lost my Faith.  I had hoped that if tried to act Catholic and do Catholic stuff It would come back.  It has not come back and is in fact even more shaky.  I'm relatively knowledgable about the Faith, but I don't have It.  It's hard to explain exactly.  I believe but I don't believe.  All I know is in this moment in time, I have never felt more unloved by God.

I did go to Mass this morning and I'll have that post up later on tonight.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Our Lady of the Pillar

Happy Sunday!
For Mass on May 15, I attended the 10:30 am Mass at Our Lady of the Pillar in Creve Ceour.

Our Lady of the Pillar is administered by the Society of Mary or the Marianists.  This is the order of priests that run Chaminade, which just happens to be right next door.  This order also runs St. Mary's, where my dad just happened to go.

Our Lady of the Pillar strongly resembled St. Raphael which reminded me of a New England Church, except Our Lady of the Pillar had a great deal more marble.  No stained glass windows though.

The music was accompanied by an organ and the youth choir who played handbells.  The young singers and ringers sounded lovely.
Opening:  Lift High the Cross
Offertory:  Magnificant
Communion:  Feed My Lambs, Tend My Sheep and Joyous Cup
Closing:  This Day Was Made By the Lord
I did not recognize the Mass Setting, which was one I've never heard before.

Father said that we were called to be people of joy.  We are chosen for love.  Christ wants to be our friend (He hasn't friended me on facebook :( ) We are ads for Christian life (oh dear).  The last few Gospels have been about prayer (uhm...thought they were about Christ rising from the dead and all that...)  Pray affects all because it works.  As much as we all want to be leaders, we are followers.  There are many famous shepherds in the Old Testament:  Jacob, Moses, David.  Father then mentioned something about Luke or what Luke was emphasizing that I missed.  Basically there are 2 types of shepherds and I missed it.  Jesus is the shepherd.  He wants to care for us but sheep are stubborn.  A good shepherd brings them back.  Jesus was telling the Pharisees that there is something more important. Sometimes us sheep don't hear.  We need to be gatekeepers.  We need to open the gates in our hearts and let Christ in.

Next somebody came and talked about the ACA, yes it is that time of year again.  The ACA supports a variety of good works in the Archdiocese.  Fr. B suggests that you give up McDonalds and donate that money ;)

Father used Eucharistic Prayer III and there were no bells.  Father's vestments were really nice.

Yesterday was Good Shepherd Sunday and apparently World Day of Prayer for Vocations.  We should all pray that our young peoples (and I would be one...barely) find their vocation in life and encourage them to ponder life as a priest, or as a religious woman or man.  :)  Perhaps I would be Sister Snup (oh there's something to give one nightmares) if someone would have taken the time to talk with me seriously about what religious women did.

Our Lady of the Pillar

View From the Back Pew

Baptismal Font

Station VIII

Website of Our Lady of the Pillar
Pictures from Rome of the West.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Church of Our Lady - Festus

Happy Mother's Day!

This morning (5/8), I attended the 11 am Mass at Our Lady in Festus.  Our Lady is a modern church with stained glass windows at the very top and sides.  The church is in the shape of a squished hexagon, with sharper points on the sides.  The pews were padded in a mauve fabric and have made me rethink the wisdom of padded pews especially with light colors.

The music was accompanied by a piano/organ.
Opening:  Companions on the Journey
Offertory:  Eye Has Not Seen
Communion:  In the Breaking of the Bread
Closing:  Celtic Alleluia: Sending Forth  (Really?  It's an actual song?  I thought it was just Gospel Acclaimations)
('s Mother's Marian Hymns?)

The homily was given by the Deacon.  The 2 disciples had given up on Christ; they were walking away  from the Church.  They could not understand how salvation can come from the Cross; how victory can come from defeat.  But Jesus came and reawakened the fire within the disciples' hearts.  Each day we face a Cross.  What do we have to keep us close to Jesus?  Prayer.  Prayer is the source of life and strength.  Deacon quoted the Catechism which has something to say about prayer, as in we should.  We need to read and reflect to give Jesus and God a chance to speak to us, to speak in our hearts.  Prayer can't just be a monologue, it has to be a conversation.  Reading the Bible everyday is an essential part of prayer.  You should be praying 10-15 minutes everyday, not including bedtime and meal prayers.  (oh dear..wonder if panic pleas for help count...) and some of that time needs to include the Scriptures.

After the Homily, Father gave a special blessing to the Mothers and the Deacon went around and sprinkled them with Holy Water while the parish sang Prayer of Blessing.

The little kids brought up their offerings separately.  Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells.  There was also hand-holding and raising at the Our Father.

Church of Our Lady
Stations in front


Garden and Stations of the Cross

Easter Candle 

View from the Back Pew
(Beam me up!)

Baptismal Font
(it's a space ship...really)

Our Lady

Mother and Child Quilt

Station VIII


Window 2

Our Lady

Website of Our Lady