Progress Report Continued

08-22-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Charlie Goraieb

Dear Friends,

I am sure many of you were surprised last Sunday to see that our music ministry has changed. The speed at which it all transpired was as much of a surprise to me as to many of you. Ike Ndolo, who has served Our Lady of Mt Carmel for many years, informed me on Sunday, Aug 8th that he would be resigning his position, effective that date. He declined to state the reasons, but I assume (and hope) that he made his decision based on what was best for him and his family.

My next thought was, ‘who will take his place?’ After consulting with a few people, I decided to call Kim Scoggin to see if she had an interest in helping us. As we spoke, Kim expressed repeatedly her love for OLMC and her willingness to help our parish in our time of need. She also made clear that, because of other commitments and obligations, she could not return to the full-time, all-encompassing role she had prior to her departure. We both agreed that a good co-director would be Dan Ballinger, a musician we have both known for many years.

Dan, who is married and the father of 9 children, has been serving the Church with his musical skills for many years. I was very pleased to hear that Kim and Dan had spoken and had agreed to share the duties of our music ministry. They will alternate weekly between directing the two morning masses and the two 5pm Masses (Jordan Webb will continue to play at the 7am Mass on Sunday). So, if you come to the same Mass every week, you will see Kim one week and Dan the next.

Some people have expressed interest in knowing what my vision is for liturgical music? My answer is that I embrace the whole patrimony of the rich Catholic tradition of music. That would include chant, classical hymns, some parts of the Mass sung in Latin (our mother tongue) and, of course contemporary music. This is pretty much what Ike was doing in the few weeks that I’ve been here, and it is what Kim and Dan will continue to do.

But the one thing I most want from our music ministry is to help you to sing. I mean really sing--fullthroated and from the heart. Few things give me greater joy than to hear the church "lled with the singing of the congregation. That tells me that we are really praying and worshipping the Lord. No matter how great or mediocre your voice may be, it’s the one that God gave you and it’s the one He wants to hear! My deepest gratitude to Kim and Dan for bringing to us their servant’s hearts and their excellent musical skills to help us sing to the Lord.

Today concludes the 5-part series on the Eucharist that Fr Jerome (and Fr Aaron) and I have been giving. I hope it has been of value to you, helping you to appreciate the great Mystery that is at the center of our Catholic Faith. If you wish to review the notes or view the video recordings of the homilies, they can be found on our website under the “Pastor’s Page” tab.

There seems to be some confusion about a point I made in the second talk regarding coming forth during Holy Communion seeking a blessing. Because we (priests, deacons and EM’s) are not allowed to confer blessings during that time, I did ask that adults who cannot receive Holy Communion to remain in the pew and receive the Lord through a Spiritual Communion. But parents with small children who, understandably do not want to leave their children unattended in the pew, can bring the children in line with them. While we cannot confer a blessing, per se, there is short prayer that we are can say, asking the Lord to "ll their hearts with His love.

To some, that may sound like a difference without a distinction, but in fact that prayer is very different from a formal blessing. Again, this is not just my personal preference, but it is what our Bishop has asked us to do.

May our Lord bless you and your family. Please pray for me, as I do (daily) for all of you.

Fr Charlie Goraieb