From the Pastor: Some Important Announcements!
I have written before about some of the differences in the liturgical calendars for the Novus Ordo Mass and the Traditional Latin Mass. Today we experience one of the biggies. Last month we celebrated the feast of Christ the King in the TLM. This weekend the remainder of the parish celebrates it! But, more than just celebrating this feast this weekend, it is also the “traditional” day for the bishop to bestow his honorary St. Jude Award to those who do exemplary and usually unnoticed work at their parish. This year the award for Epiphany of Our Lord goes to the man who probably greeted most of you when you first arrived at the parish; the man who is always around helping out, making sure everything is safe and secure, assisting newcomers, locking and unlocking rooms when needed, and generally just making sure the people and possessions at Epiphany are cared for. He also assists in the choir at the Saturday night vigil Mass and reads the petitions at the weekday morning Novus Ordo Masses. He is an active member of the Knights of Columbus, helps in the office every Monday, and folds bulletins for you on Saturday mornings. For somebody who gets around so much, you might wonder just what he would accomplish if he wasn’t wheelchair bound. By now, of course, you all know that Robert Thibodeaux is the man of whom I write. Be sure to congratulate him. Maybe he will bring the medal with him next weekend to show it off!
Next. Thanksgiving is this Thursday. It is not a Holy Day, so there is no extra TLM in the evening, but if you wish to attend Mass with St. Joseph Vietnamese Mission, they have a 5:00 pm Mass. It is also the fourth Thursday of the month, which is normally a night of prayer, catechism and socializing for the men’s Holy League. Since both Thanksgiving and, next month the Immaculate Conception and Christmas week interfere with the normal schedule, we are changing it up a bit. There will be no more meeting in November, but in December we will meet on the 1st, 15th, and 29th, returning to the normal second and fourth Thursdays in January. Please mark your calendars!
Finally, there will be a weekday Mass time change in the new year. When we first came to Epiphany, the huge majority of people who thought they could come to daily TLM wanted it at 9:00 am. But traffic is still pretty bad at that time and it takes up a big chunk of the day for homeschoolers, so only two families have been faithfully bringing in altar boys for the Mass. One of them is now moving away. We had three adult servers, but two of them left to enter religious life (what a great reason to lose altar boys!), so most days we are down to only one regular altar server, and when he is missing, there is no server. One the other hand, last Lent we started a 6:30 am Mass and it now generally has more people in attendance than the 9:00 am except on First Fridays, and I have never been without at least one server at Mass. I have also been in the position of having to celebrate three Masses several times a week, as the 8:00 am Novus Ordo Mass is also my responsibility. I am only supposed to celebrate two daily Masses, so one needs to be cut out. After much consideration, it is the 9:00 am Mass which will go bye-bye. I am still willing to celebrate a second TLM at 8:00 am IF THERE WILL BE PEOPLE ATTENDING! So I need a commitment if you would like to have a TLM at that time. If there is no demand for it, I will simply celebrate the 6:30 am TLM and then, when needed for the 8:00, instead of celebrating a Novus Ordo Mass, I will celebrate another TLM at 8:00 and those who normally attend the 8:00 NO Mass can simply attend Mass in the Traditional form. (Why not just celebrate a NO Mass, you ask? Because of the different liturgical calendars. It is tough and confusing for me to switch back and forth on a daily basis, so I will stick with just the one calendar whenever possible.) Will I have altar servers for the 8:00 TLM? We shall see. Right now there are not servers for the 8:00 am NO so I don’t expect it to change unless additional people attend. Of course, unless you attend daily Mass, you won’t know the difference. Which reminds me... Now is a good time to seriously think about attending daily Mass wherever you are, even if you cannot get to Epiphany. If you need an example of how important daily Mass is, let me share two things nobody ever says on their deathbed. 1. I wish I had fewer kids; 2. I wish I hadn’t gone to Mass so often.
With prayers for your holiness,
Fr. Edwin Palka