Future Priests of the Third Millennium

A little insight into the life of seminarians from various dioceses preparing for ministry as Roman Catholic priests, including daily activities, personal interests, special events, the spiritual life, news from the seminary, and almost whatever comes to our minds!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

That was fun; let's not do it again.

The day began, as is my rule, the Office of Readings and Morning Prayer. Since I wasn't participating in the daily mass at the parish, here, I didn't go over there to do my holy hour in the morning. So, then I had some breakfast and did some reading. Then, it was off to the nursing home for 10:00 AM mass. Mass was great. The elderly were lovely; they always are. And this Mass is awesome: so many parishioners show up to help with the mass and visit with the people there that it is truly inspiring. There are probably 9 parishioners who show up, four of them being from one family (a mom [dad was gone this week on a business trip] and kids in grades 9, 7 and 5, or so). I gave the homily, speaking about the humility of Solomon and the joy of the one who works to obtain the treasure (we have the habit of using the Sunday readings on Saturday morning at the nursing homes).

Then midday was fairly uneventful. I did some reading, ate lunch, finished my homily preparation, until 3:07 when I received a call in my room from the sacristy. "There's a baptism during the 4:00 mass and Father wants you to know, in case you want to make your homily shorter since there's a baptism." Great! Knowing the parish, knowing the pastor and being a deacon, I knew this meant I didn't have enough time to prepare and something was going to get short-changed.

Why wouldn't there be enough time? All I had to do was adapt my homily a little, right? Well, not quite. You see, being a deacon, I get to function very much as the MC at my parish. As well, the pastor likes to do things correctly, as they are in the text, and this parish rarely does baptisms during Mass. I myself haven't practiced or assisted at a baptism during Mass, except at the Easter Vigil, but that's different. So, I had to first learn how to do the baptism during mass, then modify the general intercessions from the weekend for use at baptism, make sure the family knew to be ready at the beginning, middle and end of mass, make sure blessed water was out and ready along with everything else, remind Father of how this all went, remind the lector that I would carry in the Book of the Gospels, tell her to come up right after the homily for the General Intercessions (we're letting the lector do that here rather than [perhaps more appropriately] the deacon), tell the choir director that the Gloria comes right after the initial questioning of parents and godparents, find out that the choir would be doing an acclamation after the baptism, vest and prepare myself for the celebration of Holy Mass. Oh, and don't forget that I yet had to adapt my homily.

Like I said, something had to get short-changed. Well, about four things did: the intercessions, the instruction of the lector, the homily, and my preparation for Mass. Sadly, I have the suspicion that this might be a fairly common occurence in parishes, especially hispanic parishes with someone asking for a presentaciĆ³n of their toddler just before mass or whatever have you. Perhaps I'm wrong about the situation of parishes, and I hope I am! Yet, I don't get too discouraged or disappointed with myself in this situation. Such were the circumstances. We make the best of the situation, confess our negligence, and trust God with the rest! In the end, the Baptism and Mass went well: the little girl was made a daughter of God and welcomed into the family of the Church, and the sacrifice was re-presented unto the Most High. Deo gratias!




Deacon Gregory. said...

Yes, the waters were flowing and the Sacrament was validly celebrated. Like I said, the little girl was made a daughter of God and welcomed into the family of the Church. Thanks be to God for that.

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