This is my third "round" of living in the great state of Texas, and I'm thrilled to be here again - even farther down South than I've ever been (in the U.S.).
One of the great things about Texas is that everything is bigger. Honest. I really mean it. And please don't doubt my honesty.
My mother (age 76) is raising her 11 year old great grand-daughter, who Katie and I hope will come to visit us this summer. She was thrilled to hear that we live less than five miles from the Gulf of Mexico (we call it "the bay"). I told my great-niece that if she came to visit, she and Aunt Katie could go to the beach as often as they liked (and she was thrilled to hear it), but I felt that it was only a smart thing to warn her..... about the sharks. After all, EVERYTHING'S BIGGER IN TEXAS. Right? Agree with me here, okay?
She asked me about the sharks, and I simply stated to her the fact that Texas waters have some of the meanest and biggest sharks in the world. Oh? Yep. They're so vile that when they are swimming off shore, and see someone walking alone on the beach, that they just jump clear out of the water onto the beach, have the person as a snack, and head back to the water. I had her believing me until .... yep, not too long. Why can't she - a yankee (and I'm just about prepared to call her a DAMN YANKEE), believe her favorite great uncle (unless my brother is her favorite, and then we will have a huge family problem. Texas sized....)
The good news from the parish is that we're going to have our first Mass bulletin/leaflet this week. The bad news is that I have to get it done Friday.... but AFTER the morning prayer (7.45) and Mass (8.00), which will also include the May Crowning. This should be fun. The St. Michael Hymnal in our pews has an older version of the "Immaculate Mary" text, which includes in the first verse: "your praises we sing". (I wish it were the even OLDER text: "Immaculate Mary, our hearts are on fire.")
The baptism by fire does continue, though.....VBS, Catholic-style, will include (from 8am-Noon) an opening "service" in the nave - with music. Then, two, 35-minute music sessions....THEN the closing chapel service, which will include a hymn that we will have (endeavored) to teach the kids (grades 1 on up). Pray for the humble organist who will be begging for a padded organ bench (or padded room at week's end)!
Tonight the wonderful women who lead the music at the Spanish Mass told me that they will be out of town for Mother's Day. God will help me - that's kind of what they said - without saying it. Fortunately, the ordinary will be in Latin (except the Gloria).,
We're beginning the Latin ordinary again (they sang it during Lent), because on Corpus Christi, all the Masses will be in Latin (Novus Ordo). I think - and pray - that it's also going to be ad orientem, as well. To that bit of news, I add my not-yet-completely-formed-Texas-accent YEEEEEHAWL!!!!! Rejoice with me. Come to The Body of Christ to celebrate the Body of Christ on the Body of Christ Day.....
Please send wheaties.
SteveO (Larger than ever in Texas ---- really!!)