Let’s all continue to pray for the countless lives that have been tragically altered as a result of mass shootings in Gilroy, California, El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio recently. Let us pray that we may get insights to action that will address this epidemic.
Once in a while I will make a reference to daily Mass and some people are still surprised that we have Mass EVERY DAY. Many parishes around the world are not able to offer Mass daily, but we here in the Archdiocese of Chicago are fortunate because there are very few parishes that DO NOT offer Mass EVERY Day. If you think about it, that is a lot of Eucharist! Actually, there is one day in the year that Mass is not permitted to be celebrated and that is Good Friday.
We here at Holy Family have more attendees than most parishes for daily Mass, with between 40 and 60 on a regular basis. The daily Mass assembly is consistently the same core of dedicated people with a great appreciation of the Eucharist and is supplemented with loved ones and family members of those for whom the Mass is being offered. Please take a moment to notice the sign outside of the chapel that lists the Mass intentions for daily and weekend Mass as well as the sick and deceased we are praying for throughout the week.
Daily Mass attendance increases in Advent and particularly in Lent. In all of the seven parishes that I have served, and particularly here at Holy Family, I have come to appreciate the ‘Daily Mass Crowd’ and regular attendees, such as John Bacchi who plays piano and sings.
Almost always the Mass is in the chapel but occasionally when there is a funeral visitation, morning Mass is offered in the church at 9:00am EVERY weekday. We also offer Mass EVERY Monday evening at 7:00pm. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is offered EVERY Monday evening from 6:00-6:45pm in the Reconciliation Room in the back of the west side of church. EVERY first Saturday from 4:00-4:30pm we offer a Reconciliation Service, which is authentically the Sacrament and approved by the US Bishops. This service is similar to the type that we offer EVERY Advent and EVERY Lent. It consists of a large group gathering for prayer and music, a scripture reading and reflection by the priest, Examination of Conscience and Act of Contrition concluding with INDIVIDUAL Confession, Penance and Absolution.
Daily Mass Procedures
Fr. Rich and I recently reviewed many of the procedures for daily Mass. We are not really making many changes to Mass procedures, but in discussion with Rich, Fr. Charlie Bolser, Fr. Denis Carneiro, Fr. Bill Zavaski and other priests who preside, we want to offer a bit more consistency for the setup and liturgical actions for daily Mass. We realized that the variations that each of us have in style causes some confusion for those who set up. I want to thank all of those who help, not only with the setup and clean up, but those who serve as Eucharistic Ministers, Proclaimers and others who help make daily Mass a very prayerful experience.
To enhance and bring consistency to the prayer of our daily Mass, I have asked former staff member Jerry Stecker to take the lead in coordinating the Masses. He will work collaboratively with those who are currently involved, and certainly with us presiders. For additional collaboration and clarity, Jerry will report to Gene Garcia who is ultimately responsible for ALL Liturgical Arts ministries, activities, procedures and functions—obviously in conjunction with myself, Fr. Rich and Deacon Dennis Brown. This will help provide additional consistency and clarity of communication.
We thank Jerry for the generosity of his time and commitment to making daily Mass even more prayerful and consistent. We also ask those who attend daily Mass to support any tweaks or alterations that may be made. THANK YOU ALL!
In my recent writing project, I emphasize many aspects of work and find fascinating connections with Work, Joy, Talent and God. John 6:27 has Jesus encouraging us “…not to work for food (things) that perish but for those that endure.” I am fascinated with how prevalent the word workis in our culture. I hope my writing will assist in adding a faith dimension that calls us to work for what lasts.
This week’s Gospel offers a couple of clues as to what might last for us. From the Gospel of Luke, Jesus tells us ...more will be demanded of those entrusted with more, and provide money bags for yourselves that do not wear out, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven and…for where your treasure is, there will your heart be.
Connecting last week’s Gospel and this week’s, let’s work for what matters to God, what lasts, what we treasure, what holds things that don’t wear out, where our treasure is and where our heart should be.