Friday greetings from steamy Orlando, Florida. We received nearly four inches of rain here late yesterday, accompanied with loads of thunder and lightning. Brought back memories of the years I lived here. It has been a trip down memory lane here for me. Yesterday, I got to spend some time with the first pastor who hired me as director of liturgy and music at Saint Mary Magdalen Parish in Altamonte Springs back in 1984, Fr. Paul Henry. Paul is now the rector at the Shrine of Our Lady, Queen of the Universe, which primarily serves the tourist community in and around Disney and the other resorts and theme parks in this area. Here is a picture with my first "boss." Such a delight to see him.
Here's the WLP booth here at the Orlando Liturgical Conference.
I came to this diocese fresh out of the seminary, after having studied theology for four years. But the real school happened here in this diocese in a large, vibrant, suburban parish. It was after seven years in pastoral music and liturgy ministry here that I felt a yen to return to school to study theology once again, this time putting my pastoral experience in dialogue with theology. This yearning led me to Chicago, where I enrolled in the doctoral program at Catholic Theological Union. Being here in Orlando reminds me of where my journey has taken me. It is definitely good to be here. I am now going in to hear the conclusion of Tony Alonso's morning keynote address.
Gotta sing. Gotta pray.