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Sunday, December 4, 2005

W imie Ojca i Syna i Ducha Swietego

Why do I so enjoy attending a church service in a language that I don't understand? Beats me, but it was an experience I totally relished today at this church. I made out about five words total, including "apostolski," "Benedictus," and "kielbasa" (that last one during the announcements at the end). "Santa Claus" was also mentioned in the announcements, and my mom, who accompanied me, swears she heard "bingo." ("I couldn't go to their bingo," she confided. "They'd call out the numbers in Polish and I wouldn't be able to understand them.")

I haven't sat through an entire Mass in another language since Portugal and Spain five years ago. I know how almost all of the service goes in English, and so it's easy to follow along in a general sort of way. I think the most fun is being in the middle of a community of worshippers who don't often have an outsider in their midst. You get to see them in a setting usually visited only by members of their own group.

Whatever the attraction is, it was inspiring. Not to mention the delicacies on sale in the church hall on the way out.

Comments (3)

At the risk of sounding reactionary, I thought it was cool having the mass in Latin. That meant everywhere you went, it could be the same, a universal language, as it were...and wouldn't that be appropriate? Et cum spiritu tuo?

Plus, it's great for the kids. "What's God's phone number?" we used to ask "Eckumspearie 220."

Went to this church with my folks the last time they were in town (we were playing the traditional Catholic game: heathen daughter tries to find a mass for Mom & Dad) after trying St. Francis (thought the folks would love the homeless-outreach stuff) only to find mass cancelled, the Madeline (mass almost over), and winding up here.

I think the old folks from Chicago had flashbacks of the Polack church back there.

I'm too young for the Latin, but Mom still says "dominos and biscuits" and laughs (sorry, no clue on how to spell the Latin here - product of post-Reagan California public school).

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