Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Greetings from 36,000 Feet

Wednesday greetings to all. This is a first for me. I am currently about 36,000 feet above the US, headed to San Francisco. I am giving talks on the RCIA in the next few days in the dioceses of Fresno and San Jose. It is supposed to be in the low 100's in Fresno today and tomorrow. Decided to purchase an hour of wi-fi, since United Airlines, in its infinite wisdom, decided to put a 737 into service for this four hour plus flight with no inflight audio or video entertainment. Glad I bought two newspapers before take-off.

I don't want this blog to turn into a big complaining session about what's wrong with the liturgy today in some parishes, but it has been amazing to see the responses concerning my recent comments on the communion rite and music for the communion procession. In my previous parish, Saint James, Dr. Steve Janco attended Mass one Sunday before leading a spirituality session for liturgical ministers. Our music director asked Steve if he had any recommendations about the way we celebrated the Mass. Steve said that he thought it would be better, and in line with the General Instruction, if the music ministers began the communion song immediately after the "O Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under . . ." instead of having the music ministers receive communion first. And guess what happened the following week? The music began immediately following the "O Lord" prayer and the music ministers received communion last. After a few weeks, they even eventually kept the music going, with the guitar playing when the pianist went to communion, and vice versa. Just an easy switch made for a strong theological statement; that we (ordained and lay) are one when receiving the Body and Blood of Christ. There is no "priest's communion" followed by the "peoples' communion."

I have not yet settled into a new parish in Chicago; just haven't found the place that seems right for me. Perhaps I will continue an occasional "view from the pew" posting here, but will refrain from naming the particular parish (I know we are all trying our best!).

Well, my two-dollar hour of wi-fi is just about up. I hope that wherever you are, your day is a good one.

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.


1 comment:

Kathleen Basi said...

When to get the music ministers to Communion seems to be a perennial point of stress. In our ensemble we send people in shifts so we can keep the music going and I will often come over and take over on piano for a verse or two so my husband can go. It's worked just fine for years, but we can't seem to convince anyone else in the ministry to do it.