If you’ve read “Rebuilt,” you’ll want to read this

The book “Rebuilt” has become something of a phenomenon of modern American Catholicism: the story of how a parish in Maryland almost literally “rebuilt” itself, rethinking everything from liturgy to lay participation and beyond.  I’ve lost track of the number of priests, deacons and even bishops who have asked me “Have you read ‘Rebuilt’?” (One [Read More...]

Fort Worth becomes first U.S. diocese to set out new Mass guidelines because of Ebola—UPDATED

From RNS: The Blood of Christ will not be offered during Mass. The Host will be placed in the hands, not on the tongue. And the faithful should not hold hands while reciting the “Our Father.” These are but a few of the guidelines the Diocese of Fort Worth — not far from the Dallas hospital where [Read More...]

Here’s something you don’t see every day: a Confirmation celebrated in the Extraordinary Form

A priest friend alerted me to this. It happened Sunday and was done by my bishop, Nicholas DiMarzio of the Diocese of Brooklyn, at the chapel of St. John’s Cemetery in Queens. Yes, there was slapping. [Read more...]

A dal-what? The story behind the deacon’s vestment

  Wearing the dalmatic for Midnight Mass a few years ago, with my late pastor, Msgr. Joseph Funaro. Periodically, people ask me about that “robe” I wear during Mass. How come it has sleeves? What’s up with that?? My blog neighbor Kathy Schiffer, thankfully, has found some interesting answers, courtesy Zenit and Fr. Edward McNamara. [Read More...]

“Prepackaged” communion??

So, this seems to be a thing now. The image below is ricocheting around Facebook with the simple headline: “My church gave prepackaged communion,” but no other explanation. Okay. This is clearly not Catholic; anything like this in a Catholic setting would be invalid and illicit. (And have no fear: if Catholics found these things [Read More...]

Down syndrome teen hopes to serve Mass in every state

From Catholic News Service:  Kara Jackson, a 16-year-old altar server from Holy Family Parish in Middletown, Ohio is on a quest to serve at Mass in all 50 states.So far she has served at liturgies in 18 states after recently serving at a morning Mass at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford.Kara’s endeavor is [Read More...]

Does it matter where you sit for Mass?

A couple weeks ago, Fr. Roger Landry wrote a column for his diocesan newspaper in which he argued that, yes, it does: When people come to a Church that is anything but standing room only, where they opt to worship indicates something about their attitude toward involvement at Mass. Sitting up front is normally a [Read More...]

Dear La Salle College High School: would you like to explain this, please?

Drop me a line, when you have a chance. I’d like to know what this is about: Various sources around the interwebs are saying this was a Mass celebrated on the Feast of the Assumption (August 15). The priest appears to be using a TV tray as an altar. Want to let us know what this [Read More...]

“The Latin Mass appears to be alive and well”

That’s the assessment from The St. Louis Post-Dispatch:  When Pope Francis was first elected, he appeared to the crowd in St. Peter’s Square without the short, red velvet cape known as a mozzetta. Some Roman Catholics immediately cried foul, worried that the pope’s decision to forgo the more formal wear signaled a threat to traditional [Read More...]

But what does the “Sign of Peace” really mean?—UPDATED

“Let us offer one another a sign of peace.”   With those words just before communion, the deacon or priest invites the faithful to take part in a liturgical gesture that has lately gotten a lot of ink—and sparked no small amount of debate.  What hasn’t gotten as much attention, though, is the significance of [Read More...]