Simply One Word, Amen, Not I Believe or ANYTHING else!

Simply One Word, Amen,

Not I Believe or ANYTHING else!

Distributing Communion, Just AMEN.

This is part of another Blog, but I feel that it needs to be repeated.  I have preached on it, taught about it and still feel that we are a long way from people getting it!  When receiving communion and you hear, the simple phrases “The Body of Christ” and “The Blood of Christ”  there is only one possible response, AMEN.  Period, end of story, I should stop writing.  That is it, just AMEN.

First issue.  We are a universal Church.  Catholic means universal.  There are two words that are almost the same in all languages, AMEN and ALLELUIA.  I have not been able to confirm, but in all the places I have been it has been amen, not always spelled like that and I found a list of 80 languages with the sound being amen, just the writing was different.

Second issue.  Amen from the original texts is more accurately translated, “so be it”.  It is more a statement of faith with many other nuances that trite phrases like “I believe” just don’t have.

Finally, if the whole, or even most of the church is uttering the same thing, who are we to change it.  We are attesting with those present, those at neighboring parishes and those around the world that we are one Church.  With our amen we affirm our communion of faith and purpose with the entire Church.  We have come together at Eucharist as one universal Body of Christ all using the same affirmation, AMEN.

I believe…

When receiving communion we only say Amen.  No more Thanks yous, thanks, I believe, Jesus is my Lord and Savor or anything that doesn’t sound like AMEN.  As our sending forth song proclaimed tonight, “let the people say AMEN!  (and nothing else when receiving communion)

SPRING BREAK! Holy Land Here we come!

  SPRING BREAK!  Holy Land …  Here We Come!

Our next Pilgrimage is the Holy Land.  We will be leav

ing St. Pius X at 10:30AM on Sunday March 11!

A bus will take all but me to Houston, where I will meet you after the 10:15 mass.  We will check in and be met by local tour representative and check in for our Lufthansa Flight to Frankfurt, Germany.   T

hose that went to Ireland, we have gone from probably the smallest transatlantic plane to the largest.  Looks like we will be on at A380, which is a full two story plane.  Looks like it will be 3 seats on outside of aisles and 4 in the middle.   (Unless you upgrade to the top floor!)  We will then board another Lufthansa Flight to Tel Aviv on what looks like an Airbus A 321, 3 seats either side of the aisle.  I am assuming we will have similar planes on the way home.  We get a bonus night in Frankfurt on the way home and we can get a great German dinner to prepare us for re-entry.


  1.  Do you have to be a St. Pius X, Parishioner?  NO
  2.  Do you have to be Catholic?  No, all are welcome!  FYI, We will celebrate mass most days.
  3. What is itinerary?  We are going at a busy time, he is working on it.
  4. What if I want more info?  There will be an info night next month, watch for dates.  We may stream it live on Facebook.
  5. How much will tipping by?  Included
  6. How much will food be?  I don’t know, depends on how much you eat, but breakfast and dinner are included and will be more buffet style to facilitate quicker meals most nights.

We have set aside 44 seats.  I have taken one of them.  This will be like last time, first come with $300 to hold, first saved.

Price should be around $3000 each and 4 hotels including one in Germany.

If you are interested and want to be adding to mailing list please watch for more info!  Once I have details they will be posted here like last time!


Last Rites – Pet Peeve #4

Last Rites – Pet Peeve #4

I just got off the phone with a class mate that is now part time chaplain in a secular hospital, being paid by the Archdiocese to be there.  (In my last blog he is the person to my left) Worlds apart, he is nearer the Great Lakes than any other body of water and is now belongs to a religious order.  I’m here.  We share a frustration with the misnomer of last rites.  Since we know not the hour, any sacrament we receive, could be our last rite.  People ask for last rites when they really want Anointing of the Sick.

There are Last Rites in the Church and they are called Viaticum, or food for the Journey.  (or something very close to that) Any Eucharistic Minister whether extraordinary or ordinary can administer Viaticum.

Why does this bother us?  A few reasons.  The Church has never taught to wait till the person was a close as possible to death.  The official teaching has always been to not wait, as you don’t want to miss judge the time of death.  In the old days, however, it wasn’t that bad because there was always a priest that could get to the hospital.  A week doesn’t pass that one of the priests here is running out to anoint because people thought it was the last rites.  In today’s world, when you wait till the last minute, the priest usually has to cancel and appointment or be late to another sacrament to make this work.  Even worse you may not find a priest.

There is no reason to wait!

I anointed a 98 year old a few weeks ago.  He was worried that it wasn’t time.  I promised him that I would be back and happy to anoint him at any time as he faced his final challenge.  His wife of 70 plus years revived the sacrament too.  A truly graced moment.  A rushed anointing in an ICU or ER is just that, rushed.   Anointing of the Sick usually brings much comfort, especially when the one to be anointed can still participate fully in the sacrament.  Please don’t wait, the grace of this sacrament is important, especially at the end stages of life.

Please share this far and wide. Especially with your family and friends that are not actively practicing their faith.  We want this to be a graced moment!  Let’s avoid this becoming something we get done to fill in a check box.  The worst is when people try and leave because they are meeting request of loved one that is dying.

For surgery stop after Mass and ask your priest.  I think most of us love celebrating this sacrament in the church with others to help pray.  Or make an appointment to make sure you receive the sacrament before your surgery.

Let’s use this sacrament to help others back to the faith!

July 08, 1989 or 28 years ago last Saturday, I was Ordained a Priest.

find me….

July 08, 1989

or 28 years ago last Saturday

I was Ordained a Priest.

With family and friends to help celebrate, including three US Air Force Chaplains that had been with me through formation, my Bishop ordained a priest.  Things were amazing.  I felt like the luckiest person in the world.

Then things changed.  I found myself on the outside with a bishop that believed my education was all wrong.  We were to become warriors, to bring the light of TRUTH into the next millennium.  We had to judge people sinners, tell them what they were doing was wrong and that the difficulties in their life were their Calvary and to basically offer it up.  There didn’t seem to be any compassion in this and the idea of the individual conscience as the primary agent in a moral decision was gone.

I didn’t see a way that my vision of priesthood and my bishops could ever come together.  Disillusioned, I saw no way back.  I had a good life, I did some amazing things, but there were periods of huge darkness where I was very angry.  Last Sunday’s Gospel was that the yoke is easy and burden is light.  I would get angry at words like that.  It wasn’t easy and the burden wasn’t light.

God always works, even through our mistakes…

Through out our salvation history, God comes to us in threes.  I had 3 priests that were with me through all of this.  One I met in high school, he was the first I talked to about being a priest and he is now a retired bishop.  Another was chaplain when my parents were in Omaha while I was in College, and the last I met while in the Theology; he supervised me as a chaplain candidate and also my parent’s priest in New Jersey.  The were all with me and sort of took me as I was.  Most of my friends in my diocese dropped me and that was partly probably my attitude, but it still hurt.

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