View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Friday, January 02, 2009

St. Padre Pio Chapel; "Into Great Silence"

The good-looking-one and I went out the the St. Padre Pio Chapel today.

There were three women with children there, as well as one of the volunteers.

Turns out the women were sisters, and I had taught two of them years ago at Mercy High School. They remembered me. (Fortunately, they were polite!) One of them was leading her children in the rosary. (I got a chance to say a rosary myself.) They were also showing their children about the chapel, looking at the many statues, and at the tables at the back with items for sale. The kids were drawn to the cards, rosaries and statues on the tables, as well as the statues and flowers all around the chapel. Too few churches have such an abundance of statuary these days.

I got into a chat with the volunteer at the table. I suggested the idea of making the chapel known to local Catholic homeschoolers as it would be a good place to bring children to learn about the faith, and homeschoolers are often looking for group activities and field trips.

I also suggested some gentle discussions with the Diocese of Rochester to try to get regular Masses at the chapel - even just once a month. Even though this sort of chapel is not everyone's form of spirituality, it fills a need. I love going there to pray - even when there are lively children wandering about!

And then tonight at home we watched Therese - one of my Christmas gifts to my wife. St. Therese is not one of my favorites - give me gruff old Padre Pio! - but I recognize her appeal. I pray that some day I may have such love for God. I also envied the family and its devotion, and recognize my own failure in providing a good model for my own family.

I'd also given my wife Into Great Silence, which we watched a couple of days ago. Incredible. The images of monastery life without narration and plot, just vignettes of the monks going about their daily lives of prayer and work, are awe inspiring. And I love when the monks go sledding.

I highly recommend the movie.

I also recommend the chapel for anyone in Rochester or who ventures this way.

8 Comments:

Blogger Dr. K said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:05 PM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

I like St. Theodore's. Good music. Father Pacwa has come there. We have perpetual adoration.

8:49 PM  
Blogger Dr. K said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:24 PM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

She has not preached at Mass since.

Father has said nothing about it, and he's as cordial to me as ever.

5:56 AM  
Blogger Dr. K said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I go to St Judes in Gates. I am planning on visiting the chapel this week to pray. Without even stepping foot in the chapel I think having mass there is a wonderful idea.

8:30 PM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

I'm not sure why they can't have Mass there. I know some people suspect that the diocese blocked more Masses. I don't know if that's true.

I know the Diocese under Bishop Clark has been too slow at times to allow some things - like the traditional Latin Mass.

Of course, the Diocese may have nothing to do with it.

7:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

O yes the diocese does have something to do with it. The chapel is only allowed 2 masses a year.......one on the Padre's birthday in May and the other on his Feast Day in September. It is a private chapel, but they are trying to stay under the guidance of the bishop.....he calls the shots for now. Too bad too as so many people love that chapel and would like to see more masses, weddings, baptisms, etc. but it is not allowed at this time or with this bishop. By the way the bishop has never been to the chapel!!

11:09 AM  

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