Brothers and Sisters,

We are now going into the second month of our new Mass schedule. Father Ballard and I have worked with our ministry team to provide a variety of reverent, beautiful worship services, and I would like to share our thoughts with you so you can choose which Mass is best for your family.

On Saturday we offer Mass at 5 pm with organ and either a cantor or a small choir to lead the singing of the Mass parts. There will be also hymns and appropriate organ music. This Mass has traditionally been a favorite of some of our older and more established families. We have retained this Mass not only for those families, but also for those who value family time on the weekend and wish to have more free time on Sunday.

The new Mass at 8 am on Sunday has already proved to be quite popular. At this Mass our excellent organist and choirmaster has a small choir to sing the liturgical psalms set for the entrance, offertory and communion. The choir also helps to lead the singing of the other Mass parts. There are no hymns at this Mass, creating a quieter, reverent (and somewhat shorter) Mass. There is no incense used at this Mass and only the Sanctus and Agnus Dei are in Latin.

The 10:30 am Mass continues to be very popular with lots of young families, plenty of altar boys and a full choir. The hymns are well sung and it is a busy, crowded and uplifting Mass. The worshippers at 10:30 have requested more Latin to be used, so the Gloria and Lord’s Prayer will sometimes be sung in Latin adding to the traditional style of our Mass.

It would help to alleviate the crowded conditions if more of our folks would migrate to the 8 am Mass, and I would remind the parents of young children that we love having them at Mass, but if they are too noisy you may take them to the Narthex where there is extra seating. The sound system has outlets there and it is still possible to see what is going on. If a special quiet place is needed, the family quiet room is also available.

On Sunday evenings at 5 pm we have elected to celebrate a shorter said Mass. This Mass without choir, hymns or music provides a quiet, contemplative Mass at the end of what, for many people, is a busy weekend.

The new altar rail has been appreciated by many and our new sound system has been much appreciated. Remember with the altar rail that, while we encourage you to receive kneeling and on the tongue, you may choose to receive standing and on your hand. We only ask that you receive communion reverently and respectfully.

Please consider your preparation for Mass carefully and choose which Mass is best for you and your family. Remember, Mass does not begin five minutes after the advertised time, nor does it end before the final blessing! Come early for a quiet time with God. Do not leave before you have said prayers of thanksgiving after Mass. We have done our best to please as many people as possible with the resources available, but if you have other suggestions or needs, we are happy to hear from you!

Your Pastor,

Fr. Longenecker