Tuesday, November 1, 2016

All Saints Day 2016

Early Mass

St. Peter's, 7:30 AM CDT

Today is the Solemnity of All Saints, a Holy Day of Obligation, which meant going to 8:00 AM Mass at St. Peter's this morning.

As is normal for a weekday morning Holy Day Mass, attendance was much lower than usual, almost exclusively people my age or older. There were no servers to assist Fr. Chuck, and there was no music minister either.

For Catholics, All Saints Day is a celebration of all those who have attained what is called the "beatific vision." This includes all of the church's officially recognized saints, as well as all the unknown others whom we assume have attained Heaven.

Jesus Preaching the Sermon on the Mount, by Gustave Doré

This morning's Gospel was Matthew 5:1-12, popularly known as
The Beatitudes.

The reading reminds us that humility is an essential element in the life of a true saint.

"So, the odds of your becoming 'Saint Terrance' are even worse than I thought?"

I'd be a lock if it weren't for you holding me back all these years...

Calendar Concern

The World Series resumes tonight with Game Six at Progressive Field in Cleveland, and although the weather there is supposed to be pleasant today I have some concerns. Cold weather baseball is rarely good baseball...

"Already working on potential excuses if the Indians don't win?"

Good or bad, the weather's the same for both teams...I'm just saying the championship should be settled without weather playing much of a part...

Me, Too!

From the delightfully off-kilter webcomic xkcd, by Randall Munroe, which you should read every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, as I do.

Until Next Time...

Among other things, All Saints Day serves as a sort of starter pistol for the season of observances that takes up November and December, including Thanksgiving (November 24 this year), Advent (begins on November 27 this year), and Christmas. This is the time of year when I play a lot more sacred music, too.

Jan Dismas Zelenka was a Czech composer who came to prominence during the Baroque period.

Among the most celebrated of Zelenka's sacred compositions are his masses, especially the so-called Missae Ultimae ("Last Masses") he wrote late in his life. Among these was Missa Omnium Sanctorum ("Mass of All Saints").

In 2009, The Choir of All Saints, Margaret Street released Gaudeamus: Music for the Feast of All Saints and All Souls. It is an excellent recording, and includes several sections of Missa Omnium Sanctorum.
Today's send-off is the group's splendid performance of Zelenka's Sanctus and Benedictus. Enjoy...

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