Mr. Father: Tear down that wall! The curse of cry rooms

Until I was about 7, I went to a parish that had a “cry room.” In my youth, I thought it a neat idea. This way, children could be loud during Mass. When I was old enough, I graduated from the cry room to sit with the rest of the people. When I was 7, my family moved, and we changed parishes. This new parish, built long ago and with old Spanish architecture, lacked any such accommodation. Continue readingMr. Father: Tear down that wall! The curse of cry rooms

Smoke! Smoke! SMOKE! or In Persona Christi Corporis A reflection (or perhaps rant) about liturgical incense

Let me start by warning you that most people will find this post almost, but not quite, entirely uninteresting.*

Out of the gate, I want to be clear, I am a BIG fan of incense in the liturgy. I agree with the thought (if not quote) attributed to the rector here at the seminary that, if something is worth doing, it is worth overdoing. This is the school I come from when it comes to incense. However, at the same time, I am rather persnickety about the rubrics of the Liturgy. Now, that is not to say that I feel the “Say the black; do the red” people are right. Their little mantra is simplified to the point of inaccuracy.  As an aside, it is those same people who, ignoring the instructions that have been provided by the Church, that is, the red, insist upon the alterations to the Liturgy against which I am speaking. Continue readingSmoke! Smoke! SMOKE! or In Persona Christi Corporis A reflection (or perhaps rant) about liturgical incense

The sacramentality of the USPS A Lament on the demise of old fashioned mail

snail-mail-email-explainedCatholics are all about sacraments. Perhaps this is a surprise to you, but it’s true. Theologically, we believe that the sacraments are the ordinary way that God dispenses his grace to mankind. With that in mind, take a moment to reflect on the fact that every sacrament we celebrate as Catholics has a material component. Water is used in baptism, oil in confirmation and anointing of the sick, bread and wine in communion; the physical world expresses things – it’s just part of human nature that we see symbols in the world around us. Also, each of the material elements we use in these sacraments points to the sacramental reality being created. Take baptism, for example. We use water to clean ourselves; in baptism, we are washed of our sins. On top of that, water is a (I’m told rather messy) part of childbirth; in the sacrament, we are reborn (of water and spirit) as adopted children of God. It’s an important part of sacramentality that the normal material usage of something is raised so that the normal usage can point to the reality being conveyed. Continue readingThe sacramentality of the USPS A Lament on the demise of old fashioned mail

Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum I announce to y'all a great joy

Ordination-AnnouncementI admit my announcement is nowhere near as great or big as the announcement of a new pope, but, for me, it is far closer to home. In light of my father’s worsening health condition (he has been battling pancreatic cancer for a few years), Bishop Choby has decided that he will call me to the diaconate a year early. That means I am going to be ordained on May 15, 2015 – in just under 3 weeks – so that my father can be at one of my ordinations, at least. Continue readingAnnuntio vobis gaudium magnum I announce to y’all a great joy

A philosopher and a theologian  walk into a bar

I think you’re going to start seeing more of me.

I started this blog after I had begun to work on applying and attending seminary, but a few years before I finally applied and was accepted as a seminarian for the Diocese of Nashville. At the beginning, it was a bit of a catharsis to deal with some challenges in my life at the time. I also thought it would be a fun hobby and keep me busy. Continue reading “A philosopher and a theologian  walk into a bar”