March 6th, 2015
A number of years ago, I ran across a parish bulletin that—in its own perky style tried to give a definition of the Mass. As nearly as I can recall it said the Mass is where “we gather, we remember, we celebrate.” We gather, we remember, we celebrate? I was stopped cold. This to me seemed to be the most inadequate explanation of the Mass possible. Woefully inadequate—and at least because it failed to explain why the Mass and what we do in the Mass and what happens in the Mass is different from any other time when we gather, remember or celebrate—like a retirement party—or a five year old’s birthday party.
You will notice that this definition of the Mass repeats the word “we” three times. We gather. We remember. We celebrate. Oh the author finally gets around to the guy named Jesus—but you get it—Jesus is just there as a foil for our experiences—a cypher to help us explain who we are and why we are important. For the author—and for many a modernist liturgist—the Mass is all about us. The modernist liturgist would much rather ignore God—ignore what He has done in our lives—and move on to more important things like “Me.”
March 3rd, 2015
Tuesday in the Second Week of Lent
Deacon Robert Banet
Let me In!
What seems to be trouble, my brother?
They won’t let me in.
Is it because you’re black?
Well, brother, I’ve been trying to get in that church for nineteen hundred years, so I know how you feel.
Is it you, Lord? Continue Reading…
February 27th, 2015
Last week began our celebration of Catholic Schools week. And whether or not you have a child or grandchild who attends Saint Odilo Catholic School, we all have a stake in the Catholic education of our children. You know that our school receives a large grant from the Archdiocese—about three hundred thousand—that money includes scholarships and outright, help all of it going for bills and salaries. You might say—especially if you have children here—“I thought that tuition covered it all! If the truth be told—it doesn’t. It costs about six thousand dollars to educate one child—so tuition only covers a portion and the rest of it must come from the Archdiocese and that money comes from you—just regular old parishioners.
Oh I wish and I pray we could devise a system by which tuition was negligible and that just about every child in this neighborhood could come here virtually for free. That is how it was when I was a kid at Saint Rita. My family had five children and my father was only a policeman. Well, tuition for us for the whole year at Saint Rita Grammar School was fifty-five dollars. That’s right, fifty five dollars. I think a comparable tuition today would be about five hundred dollars. That’s not bad. If that were the case today—and if we could figure out a way to make that happen—then just about every child in this neighborhood would be able to come to Saint Odilo. And what would happen would be that this parish would create the neighborhood and the neighborhood would create the parish. We could be like a little village in the Big City and our families and faith would have a chance at survival. That is how it used to be—and we wish to God that we could bring that back. This was the original point of having a Catholic school—when they invented them a hundred and fifty years ago.