Sunday, February 17, 2008


As I had posted last Sunday, one of the Masses I covered today was at a Catholic nursing facility - Hospice St. Antoine (known more currently as St. Antoine Residence). It turned out the Mass, over everything a Sunday Mass, was announced for a member of the board of directors at the residence (yeah, I got paid). The Most Rev. Louis E. Gelineau, Bishop Emeritus of Providence (and currently the resident chaplain), was the celebrant.

I really like the way this little chapel is set up. OK - the table altar is par for the course. The organ is garbage - it's this little Yamaha thingie with an indented swell manual and a one-octave pedalboard (hint: music normally doesn't happen here). BUT - it's up in a loft, accessible by elevator or stairs. Even nicer is that the Mass is piped into the patient rooms via intercom for those who can't get around at all, and that Holy Communion is also distributed to those rooms.

The topper of my day is that many of the patients SANG everything pertinent to them. They followed out of WLP's Seasonal Missalette (since there was no number board, I announced). Even the Latin Attende, Domine, which I led a cappella - in Latin, was sung well by the people downstairs. It was great!

Now, what about the typical pewsitter with full abilities in a regular parish church? How many of them do you think are willing to join in singing Attende, Domine? In my experience, not many.

One can learn a lot from a convalescent.


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