Our parish is currently going through stewardship renewal, and this past weekend my wife and I had the honor of preaching the homily at all five Masses. It was exhausting, but rewarding. We had several people tell us that our remarks impacted them deeply, and that is always nice to hear.
Anyway, there are two (somewhat random) stories from this experience that I thought Vox Nova’s readers would get a kick out of hearing.
1. After the last homily we preached, a Baptist gentleman (who just married a Catholic and is getting ready to start RCIA classes) came up to me and said, “You may be a Catholic, but you preach as good as any Southern Baptist I’ve ever heard.”
2. We live in Central Georgia, where everyone has been closely following the Little League World Series of late, and pulling for the nearby Warner Robins team. Well, as many of you know, Warner Robins played Japan in the championship game yesterday, and late in the game the teams were tied up. My wife and I, along with those who attended the 5:00 p.m. Mass, were downstairs in our Church’s social hall, receiving updates from someone following the score on his Blackberry. In the eighth inning, with the score tied, an announcement is made to that effect, and Father Ben (a fantastic young priest and a sports nut) stops the raffle, and says, “We need to pray for those boys!” He then launches into a prayer, and not a minute after he finished, the gentleman with the Blackberry exclaims, “We won! Some kid just hit a walk-off home run!” And then someone else asked, “Who hit the home run?” Mr. Blackberry refreshed his screen, and announced, “Dalton Carriker.” To which, an informed soul then said, “You know he’s Catholic, don’t you? His family is part of the Sacred Heart Parish.” The place then went bonkers.
I know some of you will probably be horrified by that last story, but I thought it was great. It was a nice moment of levity in an otherwise hectic weekend.
Update: Well, apparently my wife and I should not have been asked to speak at Mass during the time normally reserved for the homily. I was unaware that lay people were not ever allowed to serve in this capacity. I knew that it was unusual (even extraordinary), but not that it was entirely prohibited. Yikes! Well, thanks to MM and others, at least I will know better next time.