At our recent parish pastoral council meeting it was suggested that I respond to some of the concerns expressed by people that they included in the survey of the parish that many of you participated several months ago. I will try to do so periodically here in my column. My responses take into account the financial realities we face in trying to meet the expectations of our parishioners and the limited availability we have as regards the time many of our staff have, especially those who are part time, to carry out what they are already doing in the parish.
One remark was that the person was concerned that there was too much singing at Mass and that background music is better.
I also like background music when it is done at a proper time. However, singing is a very rich, traditional way of praising and giving thanks to God. At the Mass singing is sung prayer which should always be seen as a way to enhance our prayer life together. We can never sing too much if done correctly with the various parts of the liturgy requiring song.
Another concern had to do with the desire to learn more about the scriptures used at Mass. One very useful tool is the monthly booklet "Give Us This Day" published by Liturgical Press. P.O. Box 37773, Boone, IA 50037-0773. The Toll Free number is: 888-259-8470. I use this regularly. Another opportunity is the weekly Bible study Sr. Carol Martin leads here at the Pastoral Center.
You can call her at 623-8823 and leave a message to let her know of your interest. The notice of her session is placed in our weekly bulletin.
My hope is that my responses to these concerns will help with communication with you our parishioners and involvement by you in what is going on across our very large parish.
I wish to express my appreciation and gratitude for your prayers, words of condolence and support, your sympathy cards and Mass requests in memory of my mom in after her death and funeral Mass last week. It was very thoughtful of you who could make it to the wake on Friday, and those who came to her funeral Mass on Saturday in Winslow. My siblings and family felt your caring and support also.