Saturday, April 30, 2011

After the noon mass on Friday, out of town, I stayed a bit to pray for some intentions. A lady touched me on the shoulder and said that she'd walked by me on her way out but that God had told her to turn around and talk to me. I had not noticed her pass as I was deeply involved in prayer unknotting my rosary. But with that sort of conversation starter, I'm rather obliged to hear her out.

She invited me to their upcoming "Life in the Spirit" seminar, weekly on Tuesdays until Pentecost. I didn't think that parishes were still running that ancient program but I listened politely to her pitch. I told her that I'd check with my husband, etc., etc. She retrieved a couple of flyers with information from a back table for me.

She left me and I said my prayers, all the while trying to figure how to fit this into my schedule. I couldn't fit it and apologized to God before walking out.

Leaving the parking lot, I thought about asking my pastor whether he'd run the seminar at our parish.

Saturday evening's service was lightly attended because the weather was so dang nice. Surprisingly - it surprises me every year - hospitality was moved up so as not to conflict with Mother's Day next Sunday. And it was offered on Saturday evening as well, to honor St. Joseph the Worker, our parish patron. Now the choir loft where we sit was a disaster: missals and hymnals stuffed together, remnants of palms from two weeks ago. I sent the boys downstairs to hospitality while I tidied up.

There were even fewer people who stayed for hospitality! The church hall was mostly empty. And I just knew by the look on his face that the deacon was going to sit with us. He did, but he kindly asked permission first. I asked after his wife because I didn't see her and he said she's fine. He remarked that my missal looked old or well-used, and I said it's becoming obsolete but I bought it in '991 so it isn't so old. I said something about wondering how many missals I'll go through in my lifetime.

Then I related the invitation from the previous day to attend "Life in the Spirit" at a Catholic parish some distance from my own. I said that I thought the amount of traveling made the invitation impractical2 and maybe our parish could hold one. The deacon asked whether it wasn't a charismatic program and I said that it could be run that way but probably didn't have to be. Then he told me about a mass that was held in honor of a returning vet who happened to have enough of a relationship to our deacon that the deacon was invited to the mass. It was a charismatic mass and he described the hands waving, etc. So I guess I've received my answer: they won't touch it with a ten foot pole.

I sent a two-line email to my pastor and his associate anyway about "Life in the Spirit," just to make sure.

1 It's copyrighted 2001, so I don't think I was accurate. I just knew that the revised lectionary for Sunday was published in '98 and that it took some time before I could find an updated missal. I think I even used my old one for a little bit because it wasn't that far off and it was better than nothing.
2 yes, daily mass there is a bit out of the way too but not as much because my daily routine has me near there.

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