Sunday, May 27, 2012

St. Mary of Perpetual Help - Villa Ridge

Happy Pentecost!  I hope you had a Spirit Filled Day!

This morning I attended 8 am Mass at St. Mary of Perpetual Help in Villa Ridge.  This was a lovely little rural Church.  Before Mass a rosary was recited.

The music was sung a capella without a cantor.
Opening:  Come Holy Ghost
Offertory:  Lord, Who At Thy First Eucharist
Communion:  Silent
Closing:  Mary Full of Grace
The Sanctus was in Latin, but the rest was in English.

And it will come as no surprise to anyone, the Pentecost Sequence was skipped.  In the Liturgical Year, there are 5 sequences.  So far, I'm 0 for 2.  Here's the Pentecost Sequence.  I don't have any hope of hearing the Dies Irae in a normal parish...

Father's homily started off a story about how he went to the Grand Canyon.  It was winter and the Canyon was fog-covered.  Every moment as the fog lifted, more was revealed.  The Bible is the same.  God reveals more every generation.  He protected His people with prophets and those responsible for protecting them.  Everything He has given us comes directly from the Father.  Jesus has guaranteed us an Advocate, who will guide us.  The truth has been revealed.  You were given the 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit at Confirmation (How about a refresher for those of us who's Confirmation is a dim memory...).  He gives us all access to the Father.  (It's like a special backstage pass.  ROCK ON!)  Today is the birthday of the Church (Thank God no one got the idea to sing Happy Birthday Dear Catholic Church...)  It's 50 days after Easter.  He has given us access.  St. Ba (I don't know...Father talked really fast), a Church Father, in place of the Accuser, God has given us the Advocate.  Once we are redeemed, God gives us full access.  God has not abandoned us.  He has given us the tools to get home.  (A GPS??)  We just need to ask.  We have great hope.  Ask for the fullness of the Holy Spirit.  God will give us fullness.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells.  The Prayer of St. Michael was recited.

There were a host of announcements, most notably is that the pastor is now the pastor of St. Mary, St. James and St. Bridget.  Wow.  (Hey where can I find out who's getting moved and where?)


Website of St. Mary of Perpetual Help

Sunday, May 20, 2012

St. Patrick - Wentzville

Good Afternoon.
I attended the 9 am Mass at St. Patrick in Wentzville.

The Church was built in 1987.  I am now more convinced that the oldest Baby Boomers have no taste.  I'm not following this paneling in the Church thing.

Music was accompanied by an organ, piano and choir.
Gathering:  Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise
Gloria:  Heritage Mass
Offertory:  Dwelling Place
Communion:  Worthy is the Lamb
Communion Meditation:  Hail Mary
Recessional:  City of God

Music people and pastoral assistants who put the Mass together..can't decide on whether or not to sing the Sanctus in Latin or in English?  Well, who says you have to make a decision when you can sing both at the same time!  Why yes!  Encourage that active participation in the pews by encouraging parishoners to sing in whatever language they want!  I kid you not.  The Sanctus was sung in two languages at the same time.  It sounded like the sopranos (grumble.  they get all the good parts) were singing in Latin.

At this Mass there was a Children's Liturgy of the Word, so all the children gathered, were blessed and then left, while being sung "Children go to hear God's Word" because clearly, if they had stayed in Mass, they weren't going to hear God's Words.  They were going to hear what the rest of us heard, which was the word of Luke, Paul, and Mark.  Clearly not God's Words.

The homily started off with how we were celebrating Ascension.  Until a few years ago, Ascension was always celebrated on the 40th day after Easter, which was a Thursday (Actually that depends on your diocese or on your Rite for my EF friend.)  Why did Jesus have to ascend?  Why couldn't He have stayed? He could have.  (Jesus Fanfiction could speculate...) If He didn't return to the Father, the apostles could not receive the Spirit, the Paraclete.  The focus would not be on what the Church could do, but what Jesus could do.  Jesus wanted to tell them it was time for them to continue the mission.  We see how He brought them to the point being able to say goodbye.  The Paraclete gave them gifts.  They are different but they would be one.  The Founding Fathers were thinking about this scripture when they came up with our National Motto, From the Many, One.  They were thinking of all the different immigrants that would come and join our country.  (Uhm.  I hate to burst your bubble, but it was more like there were 13 separate countries being joined into one, but we can go with your interpretation....)  Though the Church is many, we are one.  One Liturgy (oh sweet Lord....where to even begin with this statement...), one Church.  We are many and different.  We are of One Faith.  We form the Church as a whole.  We are given different gifts, we are still supposed to share those gifts.  All of us are called to follow.  That is our mission in life.  (YES!  I am a follower!  perfect!)  To return to the Father like Jesus.  Called to work in this life to go back to the Father.  God gives us each day as a new start.  Sacraments give us the grace to do this.  To serve and be nourished.  Up to us if we are willing to choose that.  Where the Spirit leads to the Father.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer III and there were bells along with hand holding at the Our Father.


St. Patrick - Wentzville

St. Patrick

View From the Back Pew

The Holy Family

Station VIII

Sacraments of Initiation?

Jesus with Children
See the black head child in the red outfit totally being ignored by Jesus?
Yeah, that's how I feel.


Website of St. Patrick

Sunday, May 13, 2012

St. Rose of Lima - Silver Lake

Good Afternoon.
This morning I headed out to Silver Lake in Perry County to attend 8 am Mass at St. Rose of Lima.  This is a very cute little country church.  It's a little sparse on the inside but very nice.

All of the music was sung a capella and led by a cantor.
Opening:  Gather Your People
Offertory:  Where Charity and Love Prevail
Communion:  I Have Loved You; Like a Child Rests
Recessional:  Be Not Afraid (skipped....)

Mass started and Father said the Sign of the Cross and then he was like Oh I forgot.  Happy Mother's Day and we'll do something at the end.  Then he repeated the Sign of the Cross.

After the Responsorial Psalm, Father gave his homily.  (Uhm.  What happened to the Gospel? )  We need to pray for the mothers that we know and for those that are trying to be mothers.  It's a very special calling.  We are who we are because of their love (or lack thereof....and that just explains everything right there doesn't it?  and I thought we were beyond Freud and blaming everything on mothers....but I'm game...)  We are waiting for the lottery.  Father told the story of the lottery winners in Red Bud.  Nice to see plain, ordinary folk like us win.  There's another lottery that is more important.  Not a single one of us will be here in 150 years.  We will be somewhere else.  We'll be there forever.  (Uhm, I'm pretty sure I'm going to at least Purgatory...)  The greatest lottery ever, the lottery of eternal life.  He's going to give us the ticket.  You will be in Heaven for ever, guaranteed.  (Hold on, I must have walked into a Protestant Church...)  What is the ticket?  The 2nd reading.  (Which you've skipped..oh are going back to it...)

Father was ad libbing in a couple spots, it almost sounded like snark!  He couldn't find the right spot in the Sacramentary today, he's like every place has a different book....   Because the Offertory Song was so short, Father had to say the part where the people respond "Blessed Be God Forever."  After Father said the blessing for the wine, for some strange reason, the congregation as a whole, skipped to the "May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands..."  I'm not paying any attention but I'm saying Blessed Be and I'm like did I just miss 5 minutes of Mass?  What happened?  Father was then saying something about how they have a bet at the seminary on how long it will take to get everything right in the new translation (that's not funny right there...)

Father used Eucharistic Prayer III and there were bells at the Consecration.  There was also hand-holding at the Our Father.

After the Mass had technically ended (The Mass has ended, go in peace)  Father brought out two roses.  One was for the mother with the youngest child and one was for the mother with the oldest child.  Then he had all the mothers come up to the altar for a special blessing, a Nazi salute and a carnation.  Needless to say, I was the only woman of child-bearing age in the pews that I could see (there are mini-transepts in the Church)  So let's see, I've been to Sunday Masses where extra blessings are given to:  children, nonCatholics, the married, mothers, fathers, the sick/old, religious, parish ministers and council members, and those going on the pro-life march.  I want to know when the losers like me that have utterly failed get extra blessings. I mean I already know the Church really doesn't have a place for me because I'm not married, I'm not a mother, I'm not a youth and I'm not a religious.  I don't belong in the Catholic Church and it is incidents like this that highlight it all the more.


Information from St. Louis Archdiocese
Architecture Information

Sunday, May 6, 2012

St. Gerald - Gerald

What's better than 1 Mass in a weekend?  Why 2 of course!  Since the birds keep waking me up at 5:30 am, I rolled out of bed and headed to St. Gerald for their 8 am Mass.

St. Gerald (which one I couldn't tell you as there was no evidence of the patron saint anywhere) is an interesting church on the outside but your standard small modern church on the inside.

The music was accompanied by an organ.
Opening:  Sing a New Song
Mass Setting:  Mass of Christ the Savior
Offertory:  Christians Love One Another
Communion:  We Have Been Told
Closing:  Let Heaven Rejoice

Before the Offertory and the Communion songs, there was some recorded instrumental music.

Father wore his stole over the chasuble.  He was also wearing black crocs.  I suppose we should all be thankful they weren't neon...

Father's homily was about faith that works.  We come to Mass on Sunday and know the Truths and doctrine, but it doesn't really impact our lives.  I doesn't make a difference without works.  The Gospel isn't about growing things.  It is about seeing God's Hand in my life.  We need to have gratitude.  Everyone has different details about God's hand in our lives.  We come to God to say thank you.  That is what we are doing this morning.  If I have faith that works, it quickly becomes apparent I'm a sinner. I cause chaos (oh that's why...I just thought it was because I loved causing chaos)  I hurt others and my relationship with God.  I am self-destructive ('s a homily...not a group therapy session)  This is common for humans.  The 2nd reading addresses this.  Even though I have been redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb I still feel guilty.  This was also before all the details about the Sacrament of Reconciliation was settled on.  God is greater than our hearts. Confession makes you right with God.  God, of course, still loves you (hmmmm).  He will not abandon you.  If you are still feeling guilty, do good works.  God loves us.  It is a part of faith that works.  If I have faith that works, I am grateful.  I have been saved or redeemed, I want to give back.  I want to give my life in service.  Dedicate my life to Jesus.  Let God make my heart in sync (ipad cable ;) ) with Jesus' heart.  Remain in Me, I will remain in you.  We are looking for that moment when we get to that point we know what we want is what God wants.  It will be in tune with God and Jesus.  I will not want anything that God doesn't want.  (I hope God wants a basset hound....).  Let God do His Miracles in each and everyone of us.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer II and there were bells.  Father also reminded us it was time for the Annual Catholic Appeal (I suppose I should find somebody to give my money too...) and we should be generous.

Pieta Grotto

St. Gerald

View From the Back Pew

Station VIII

Information for the St. Louis Archdiocese (Note:  the Church is actually across from the water tower in Gerald on US 50)

St. Stephen - Richwoods

On Saturday, I headed out to St. Stephen in Richwoods for their Grape Escape.  Wine tasting, music, BBQ, what could be better?  Why going to Mass first!  I attended the 4 pm vigil Mass.

St. Stephen is a nice country church on the small side.

There was no music at Mass.  We said the entrance antiphon and the communion antiphon (First time for everything).  We did sing The Strife Is O'er as the closing song.

Father's homily was about how in the New Testament Jesus asks us 9 times to remain in him, especially using the example of the vine and branches.  In the days of our Lord, vineyards were a very common sight.  When you grow grapes, you cut away the branches that don't blossom.  You can also graft a branch onto a vine and get a hybrid.  Nine times about being joined to him.  Our Lord uses grapevines very much.  A person baptized is a lamp.  When plugged in, you are brilliant.  But that is not a good example.  Grace flows through us and makes us brilliant.  In a grapevine, the branch takes on life from the vine.  The Lord emphasizes that.  You must be joined, be joined to be full of life of the Lord.  The Acts of the Apostles, the first book after Gospel, describes the early life of the Church.  Father then went on to talk about the life of Saul.  You need to read books about St. Paul.  The fruit we bear is the manifestation of unselfish love.  We need to draw others to Christ in our everyday life.

Father used Eucharistic Prayer III and bells were used.

Father was incredibly friendly and chatty.  :)


St. Stephen - Richwoods

View from the Back Pew!

Station VIII

One of the Windows. 
I think it was more purple though..

Website of St. Stephen
Pictures from Rome of the West