Sunday, April 22, 2012

So it's a puzzle... A parish in St. Paul, MN, on Sunday has the following: No Crucifix in the Sanctuary. No deacon, despite two listed in the bulletin, sort of. No penitential rite, nor no sprinkling rite ('tis Easter Season); Gloria is terminated after praising the Father; Son and Spirit remain unacknowledged. Alleluia is truncated with nonspecified verse. Gospel is proclaimed by celebrant, followed by brief homily, and no creed. Vessels are already on altar. Following Eucharistic Prayer II (of course), extraordinary ministers "take" hosts from celebrant. He receives both species as they consume. No ushers direct Communion pattern. Over in 42 minutes, including children who receive First Communion under species of bread only. Beautiful worship space; questionable liturgy.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Joy

From April, 2012, St. Joan of Arc Knights of Columbus Newsletter:
Brother Knights,
As Lent comes to a close and we enter the joyful season of Easter, celebrating the Resurrection of our Lord, perhaps  we can look back over our lives and recognize the times when the Lord was near, in both joy and sorrow.  There are the joyful times: For those of us who are parents the birth of each of our children and grandchildren  has been a great blessing, even those children who might have had health problems. For those of us who are  married, we remember that wonderful wedding day. We remember the baptism of our children and godchildren,  of nephews and nieces, of grandchildren. We recall good times with friends, perhaps in college or in the  military or as coworkers. Perhaps it is easy to see the Lord present in such joy and happiness.  And, there are the sorrowful times: the illness and loss of a spouse, parents, even children. Being laid-off or suffering  a debilitating illness ourselves, maybe an affliction that is continuing even at present. Perhaps there was  a broken marriage or betrayal by a friend or business partner. Or, there might even be sorrow at a sinful act  for which we are ashamed, even after bringing it to Confession. Can you believe that the Lord is still near at  these times and with these memories?
“The LORD is near to all who call upon him, to all who call upon him in truth,” is what the author of Psalm 145  (verse 18) wrote. As we enter the winter of our lives, we can offer these memories to the Lord, both the joys  and the sorrows. We can trust that once we confess our sins in sincerity and honesty, and do our penance, that  we are truly forgiven and the guilt is taken away. And, we can look forward to the greatest joy of Easter – our  own resurrection when the Lord comes for us at the end of time. We will be united with all our beloved family  and friends and rejoice in the great victory He won for us on Calvary and over the empty tomb.
Happy Easter!
Deacon Rex Pilger