I know I’ve said it before, and probably to the point of some people saying “Ok, enough already!” But I do love being the pastor of this parish. Not because of anything dramatic, but just because of the daily round of worship and confessions, along with the usual counseling, seeing parishioners, giving spiritual direction, making decisions about things, whether small or far-reaching. I really enjoy being greeted by the littlest students in their sing-song unison voices (Goo-ood mor-rn-ning Fa-ath-ther!, which must be a particularly “Catholic school” thing). It’s very moving to hear a soft knock at my office door with one of the high school students asking quietly, “Could I make my confession, Father?”
Today was a beautiful St. Luke’s Day. We started out with the quiet and early celebration of the Mass in the Sacred Heart Chapel. This serves the needs of many who have to get to work, but want to go to daily Mass, and also a number of early-risers love the peaceful, low-key celebration. Mid-morning we pulled out all the stops because it was the Feast of St. Luke, so several hymns were included, the incense hung in clouds throughout the nave and sanctuary. This afternoon we celebrated Solemn Evensong and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. I’m always deeply moved when I hear all the students singing the Magnificat and the Nunc Dimittis to Anglican chant. They really look forward to Benediction, and as they adore our Lord they love it that the organ gets louder and more dramatic as the Sign of the Cross is traced out in front of them with the Blessed Sacrament.
Most of them have left for the day now. The older students are just finishing up their last class period, and things will become fairly quiet again – all ready to begin again tomorrow. I reckon our Lord continues to answer our prayer made daily, “Lighten our darkness, we beseech thee, O Lord, and by thy great mercy, defend us from all perils and dangers of this night…”