April 28 - 29, 2012
Dear Cathedral Community,
Please pray for Father David Lawler, Senior Associate at St. Christopher Parish in Speedway. This sunday Father Lawler is celebrating his Golden Jubilee of priesthood. I have been given the privilege of preaching at his Jubilee liturgy today. He has served as an Assistant and Pastor in several parishes around the Archdiocese, and for twenty years was the Catholic Chaplain at Methodist Hospital. Ad Multos Annos!
Next Sunday, May 5, we will offer our first sunday of the month Lectio Divina in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel at 5:00 PM. This quiet, reflective way of praying the Scriptures is a welcome beginning to the week ahead. All are welcome. Bring a friend!
This coming friday is the “First Friday” of the month, and as such there will be the usual Friday noontime opportunity for the Sacrament of Reconciliation as well as Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at noon and concluding with Benediction at 12:45 PM.
The Cathedral will host the annual CYO Awards Ceremony on Tuesday evening, May 1, and the Mitre Society Mass on Wednesday evening, May 2. Bishop Coyne will be present for both event.
On Wednesday, May 2, I will offer thanks to God for calling me to the Priesthood 36 years ago. Thank you for sharing in my ministry.
On friday, April 20, Archbishop Daniel celebrated his 74th birthday. I wrote to him offering our congratulations and assurances of prayer. After a recent fall at the monastery, he now resides in the Infirmary at the monastery.
Thank you for offering such wonderful hospitality to our many guests. Several more households have joined our parish community. Your hospitality sets a wonderful tone, and new members appreciate it.
Recently, the priests and parish life coordinators of the Archdiocese attended the semi-annual Business Day. Many topics were presented and pondered. Among them were, an update on the Deanery Restructuring Process which is currently focused on the Batesville Deanery; a study on Poverty in Indiana jointly sponsored by the five Indiana dioceses; clarifications on various liturgical issues; the Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese and a discussion about the Health and Human Services Mandate. Two young priests recently arrived from India to assist us for five years in the Archdiocese, and they were introduced. It was a fine day with prayer and sharing a noon meal. The meeting was hosted by Our Lady of the Greenwood parish.
Finally, a gentle reminder to look around your place in church before departing, and tidy up a bit. This simple gesture is a huge help to us.
Sincerely yours in the Risen Lord,
Dear Cathedral Community,
We are well into the Easter season. I want to encourage you for spiritual reading to reflectively read through the Acts of the Apostles. Sometimes referred to as "Luke: Volume Two," the Acts of the Apostles paints the broad strokes of the early Christian community as it comes to a deeper understanding of its identity as a church. This is especially the case following the experience of Pentecost which was a kind of birthday for the church.
That same Holy Spirit is poured out on us as Jesus' disciples through our Sacraments of Initiation, that is, Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist. Our baptismal identity is imprinted on our souls by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the waters of font. We are renewing our baptismal identity throughout the Easter season with the Sprinkling Ritual at the beginning of Mass. When we do that is replaces the Penitential Act.
In Confirmation, whether received as adults during the Easter Vigil or at another time, or as youth for those who are "cradle Catholics," we receive a further outpouring of the Spirit in the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. These are the gifts of wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, piety, fortitude and fear of the Lord. These gifts are spoken of initially in the Prophet Isaiah 11: 1-3. These gifts are intended to give us the desire to learn about God and the life to which He calls us. The acceptance and living of these gifts shapes our Christian adulthood.
Even in the Eucharist, we experience the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. From the very beginning of the Mass when we bless ourselves and call upon the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, we are conscious of the powerful presence of the Spirit of God calling us together as church to worship in sincerity and truth. At that point in the Eucharistic liturgy when the priests spreads his hands over the gifts in the prayer of Epiclesis calling down the Holy Spirit, we celebrate that great Spirit coming over the gifts and the people like a great wave of God's presence washing us with love and renewal of life. We are sent forth from the Mass to share that same Spirit continuing the awareness of God's presence in the world.
All of this is revealed in the stories of the Acts of the Apostles. It is our Easter reading.
Thanks, again, to everyone who played a part in the preparations and liturgies of Easter.
Finally, the Cathedral Kitchen can always use the help of the parishioners in this very important ministry. In particular, if you have items or materials that you are giving to the Kitchen, please bring them directly to the Cathedral Kitchen during the hours of 9:00 AM and 11:00 AM any day of the week. Do not bring them to the Rectory, but directly to the Cathedral Kitchen. If you are interested in assisting in any way, please call the parish office. Many thanks to Margie Pike and all the volunteers!
Sincerely yours in the Risen Lord,
April 14 - 15, 2012
Dear Cathedral Community,
Our thanks to Bishop Coyne for presiding and preaching during the Holy Week Liturgies, especially for the Sacred Triduum. We are blessed to have him present and leading us in prayer. Thanks, also, to Ed Green, the choir, cantors and instrumentalists who lifted up our prayer to wonderful heights of praise. We are so very blessed to have such dedicated and spirit-filled musicians. Thanks to Morna Patrick and her volunteers who spent many, many hours working on the art and environment in the Cathedral and the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. One step inside the Cathedral for the Easter Vigil, and the Easter scent alone announced the presence of the Risen Lord. Thanks to Brother Howard and the sacristans and liturgical ministers who served us so well. Thanks to Father Patrick Beidelman, Mr. Ford Cox and Mr. Loral Tansy for coordinating the liturgies and serving as masters of ceremonies. Finally, thanks to Judy Cunningham and the Heavenly Dusters for making us sparkle with freshness and beauty. To you all, may your efforts continue to blossom in your hearts as you move through this beautiful season of grace and new life.
We welcomed so many visitors and guests throughout Holy Week. As I mentioned to you previously, we all share the task of offering hospitality to those who join us as guests mindful of Saint Benedict’s admonition to greet Christ Himself in all the guests. That hospitality makes a tremendous difference in our growth as a community of faith. The smallest gesture is appreciated. As we welcome here so will we be welcomed into heaven!
Congratulations to those who were baptized and/or received into full communion of the Catholic church during the Easter Vigil. I especially welcome our own members, Elmer Chowning and Mark Metz. I want to thank Nora Cummings and all the presenters in the RCIA. We have several others members who are coming along, and will be received hopefully in the near future. We also hold in prayer the fifteen members of the newly established Anglican Catholic Community of the Ordinariate of the Chair of Saint Peter based in Houston, Texas. These brothers and sisters have formed a local community of Saint Joseph of Arimithea who presently worship at Holy Rosary Church. One of these, a former Anglican cleric, will most likely at some point in the future be ordained in the Catholic Church to serve primarily this local community.
I hope that this Easter season is one of many blessings for you. The Lectionary readings for the liturgy are very inspiring as we reflect in the Acts of the Apostles how our ancestors in the early church became clearer about their discipleship of the Risen Lord Jesus. Their growth in faith continues through us. May we all be signs of the presence of the Risen Lord in our world.
Sincerely in the Risen Lord,
April 8, 2012
Dear Cathedral Community:
CHRISTOS ANESTE; ALETHIOS ANESTE!
CHRIST IS RISEN; HE IS TRULY RISEN!
This is an ancient Greek greeting for the Feast of the Resurrection. I offer it to you praying that the Lord Jesus, the First Born Among the Dead, brings the light of His Resurrection into your hearts, your families and your homes.
As THE most significant Solemnity in the Church Year, we celebrate this Feast with sincerity and love. We recognize that the tomb of Jesus is empty, and that Christ has risen from the dead. Because we are baptized into His death, we also share in His Resurrection.
Today and for the next fifty days of the Paschal Season, we celebrate Christ’s victory over sin and dead. By God’s grace, we leave behind anything in our hearts that is dead, and renew our belief in the Lord’s Resurrection walking as children of the Light each day and in every place.
In the Gospel of Luke, Chapter 24, we read the beautiful account of the Emmaus Journey. In their despair, neither of the companions setting out for Emmaus, thought of this as a “round trip.” Their fear, anxiety and disappointment were taking them only in one direction. However, having recognized Jesus “in the breaking of bread,” they were so spiritually energized that they overcame their, and hurried back to Jerusalem to share the news of their encounter with the Risen Lord.
This is the principal task of every disciple. This is the Easter work, that is, to share with all persons whom we encounter our experience of the Risen Lord. It is the Easter Proclamation, and the work of the Church.
Let us pray that we will avail ourselves of the presence of Christ in Word and Sacrament. Renewed through the Easter Water and the renewal of our Baptismal Promises, let us be mindful of our duty and our salvation sharing with all those around us the good news of Christ Jesus risen from the dead!
Sincerely in the Risen Lord,
March 31 - April 1, 2012
Dear Cathedral Community,
Welcome to Holy Week. This is the most significant week of our liturgical year. In this observance, we celebrate our redemption through the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ Jesus. These are the most important liturgies of the entire church year; therefore, we should make every effort to participate in these services. This is especially true of the Great Vigil of Easter on Holy Saturday Night. Let me review the week with you. Bishop Christopher J. Coyne, our Apostolic Administrator, will preside at all the following liturgies.
PALM SUNDAY. We commemorate Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. At first it may seem incongruous to note such a joyful and exuberant event as the beginning of the week of sorrow. However, it recognized Jesus as the King of Glory, and as the One who enters into Jerusalem. However, our procession is not a historical reenactment. Rather it is our journey into the celebration of our Christian passover. The Passion according to Mark heard today underlines the anguish of Jesus, the cruel treatment He endured and the abandonment by His disciples. It is a stark proclamation of Jesus’ own suffering for the sake of our redemption.
THE CHRISM MASS, Tuesday at 3:00 PM This year, Bishop Coyne has asked that we move this beautiful liturgy from the evening time to 3:00 PM on Tuesday afternoon. Hopefully, this will benefit our friends from the far points in our Archdiocese. During this liturgy, the three Oils used liturgically will be blessed and consecrated: the Oil of the Sick, the Oil of the Catechumens intended to strengthen the Catechumens preparing for Baptism, and the Sacred Chrism used to anoint bishops and priests, those receiving Confirmation and used in the Dedication of Altars and Churches. Also during this liturgy, the priests will renew their priestly promises. It is a wonderful liturgy drawing representatives together from all around the archdiocese. If you’ve never attended, give yourself the gift of coming to the liturgy.
HOLY THURSDAY: THE LITURGY OF THE LORD’S SUPPER; 6:30 PM. In this liturgy, we celebrate the manner in which Jesus Christ, risen from the dead and seated at the right hand of the Father remains with us, that is, in His Body and Blood. The liturgy also celebrates and mystically combines the washing of the feet as proclaimed in John’s Gospel. Uniting the mystery of the Eucharist and service of one another assists us in becoming the mystery we celebrate, that is, in becoming the Body and Blood of Christ for our nourishment and the continuing service we offer to all others as we break open and pour out our lives in charity. This is living as a Eucharistic people.
GOOD FRIDAY OF THE LORD’S PASSION, 3:00 PM. This liturgy is not Mass, but a liturgical celebration in three parts: The Solemn Proclamation of the Lord’s Passion according to John (John is always used on Good Friday while the Passion recorded in the Synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke are rotated on Palm Sunday.); followed by the Great Intercessions; secondly, the Veneration of the Cross and thirdly, Holy Communion. For John the Evangelist the Cross is the moment of Christ’s glorification. Historically, this service revolved around the Passion Gospel. Petitions were added. Originally, the people fasted even from the Eucharist on this one day. It was not restored to the faithful until the revision of this liturgy in 1955.
THE GREAT VIGIL OF EASTER, Saturday, 9:00 PM. This is the most significant liturgy of the entire church year. Revolving around the initiation of new members, this liturgy has developed into a time for all disciples to renew their identity in Christ Jesus by renewing their own baptismal promises. The symbols and rituals of this liturgy are basic and profound: fire, light, story, water, oil, bread and wine. The four parts of this liturgy include the service of light beginning around the new fire; the liturgy of the word in which we share the sacred stories of our covenant salvation history; the liturgy of initiation bringing in new members through Baptism and/or Confirmation; and finally the liturgy of the Eucharist. This is a celebration of who we are and of our continuing paschal journey.
EASTER SUNDAY, 10:30 AM. As at the Vigil, all will renew their Baptismal Promises during this liturgy.
Please make every effort to participate in these beautifully moving and important liturgies of Holy Week and the Sacred Triduum.
Sincerely yours in the Lord,