14 December 2010

In Washington, D.C.

I've been in Washington, D.C. for the past few days.  The members of The Papal Foundation are marvellous -- a dedicated group of Catholic laity who take the responsibility of their personal resources very seriously, by giving generous financial support to the work of the Holy Father, and they're equally serious in their personal spiritual lives.  Mass yesterday morning was at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, where I concelebrated with Cardinal McCarrick in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, after which I joined several other priests in hearing confessions.

I was invited to speak about the coming Ordinariate, and there was great interest and support for what the Holy Father is preparing to do through Anglicanorum coetibus.  The talk opened up lots of opportunities for private conversations about the movement of Anglicans into full communion with the Catholic Church, and what seemed strange to people when we began nearly thirty years ago, now is more fully understood and appreciated.  All in all, this opportunity to speak to the Foundation has helped tremendously in getting the word out concerning the coming Ordinariates.  Most people had read about it, but to hear from a "real live person" about it makes a big difference.

This morning we went to the office of the Archdiocese for Military Services, where I concelebrated Mass with Archbishop Timothy Broglio, who is a delightful and dedicated bishop.  It was a great opportunity to learn more about the Church's ministry to our men and women in military service, and it was especially meaningful to me, with so many in the parish who are in this service to our nation.

Later this afternoon we'll be going to the Papal Nunciature, where we'll attend a reception and dinner hosted by Archbishop Pietro Sambi, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States of America.  That occasion will end with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, and then... back to San Antonio!

I've been traveling a lot lately, and I'm looking forward to getting back.  Of course, in a little over a month several of us will be making another pilgrimage to the Holy Land... then the "Becoming One" gathering in Kansas City in February...  hmmm... I guess I'd better keep my suitcase where I can reach it easily.