Monday, November 23, 2015

Intentional Hospitality Right Behind Me

Monday greetings from the Midwest, where Old Man Winter reared his ugly head over the weekend. A little too early in the season to be greeted by this scene this morning as I headed toward our front door here in Franklin Park,

At Mass yesterday at Old Saint Patrick's, something happened after the closing song that I wanted to share here.

First of all, you need to know that as Mass begins every week, we are all invited to stand and introduce ourselves to those around us. I don't usually attend the 11:15 A.M. Mass; I usually go to an earlier Mass. So, when I stood up, I introduced myself to Lois on my right and to Mary Ellen behind me, among others. I remembered these two names, so when the time came to exchange the sign of peace, I used their names. After the closing song, Mary Ellen, seated in the row behind me, tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I was a parishioner at Old Saint Pat's. I told her I had joined the parish several months ago. She said, "Well I haven't seen you here before and I just wanted to welcome you." I told her I usually go to the 9:30 A.M. Mass and then she said how happy she was that I was a parishioner. I told her to have a great week and she did the same.

Folks, that is intentional hospitality. My heart was warmed as I headed out the doors into the frigid air.

I hope your celebration of Christ the King warmed your heart.

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.

1 comment:

Liam said...

Most U.S. parishes function more like a group of coexisting communities: while some people may frequently toggle their Mass attendance at different time slots on the parish schedule, in my experience most people are fairly faithful to one slot and rarely see *at Mass* parishioners faithful to another time slot; if these people are not neighbors or participating in other parish activities, they are unlikely to know of the existence of each other.