Sunday: Holy Communion Outside of Mass

Thank you again to everyone who waited patiently to receive Jesus in Holy Communion last Sunday! It was a true testament to our Faith and very humbling for the priest.

Tomorrow, Sunday, May 24, we will have Holy Communion Outside of Mass two times: after our 9:00am Ordinary Form live streamed Mass – probably around 10:00am; and, after our 11:30am Extraordinary Form live streamed Mass – probably around 12:30pm.

We will have two (2) stations for Holy Communion tomorrow: outside the chapel entrance – same as last week – and one in front of the church under the main arch.

Please follow the guidance of our parking lot ‘ushers’ so that Holy Communion can be received reverently and safely – never thought I’d need to say ‘safely’! The lead-foot drivers should probably not be at the wheel in the parking lot tomorrow!!

All good? Now, on to read a little more about St. John Paul’s 1979 Pentecost visit to Poland. Wonder what the Holy Spirit has in mind for the world this Pentecost!

God bless

FRVW

Nine Days That Changed the World – Coincidence?

Pope St. John Paul II’s 1st Visit to Poland as Pope – June 2-10, 1979

(9th centenary year after the death of St. Stanislaus, Patron of Poland)

The following two paragraphs were part of Pope St. John Paul’s homily on the Eve of Pentecost, June 2, 1979.  Please be mindful that he was speaking to millions of Poles who had lived under atheistic communist dictatorship since World War II.  He was surrounded by communists and their military at this Mass.  They, who had tried for decades to silence the Catholic Church.  They, who had closed Catholic churches and attempted to limit Catholics’ access to the Mass and the Sacraments.  He did not begin his first visit to Poland with platitudes to the ruling party!

To Poland the Church brought Christ, the key to understanding that great and fundamental reality that is man. For man cannot be fully understood without Christ. Or rather, man is incapable of understanding himself fully without Christ. He cannot understand who he is, nor what his true dignity is, nor what his vocation is, nor what his final end is. He cannot understand any of this without Christ. (My emphasis).

Therefore Christ cannot be kept out of the history of man in any part of the globe, at any longitude or latitude of geography. The exclusion of Christ from the history of man is an act against man. Without Christ it is impossible to understand the history of Poland, especially the history of the people who have passed or are passing through this land. The history of people. The history of the nation is above all the history of people. And the history of each person unfolds in Jesus Christ. In him it becomes the history of salvation.

St. John Paul ended his homily with the following prayer to the Holy Spirit in his homily on Saturday, June 2, 1979, the Vigil of Pentecost:

Let your Spirit descend.
Let your Spirit descend.
and renew the face of the earth,
the face of this land. Amen.

Was it coincidence that this Pope from the Iron Curtain was to visit his country for nine days – the length of days the Apostles prayed from the Ascension to the Coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost; the first Novena?  Was it coincidence that his first public Mass was on the Vigil of Pentecost?  Communism was doomed at the conclusion of the above prayer by the Successor of St. Peter whom the Holy Spirit had chosen to be pope less than a year before.  In less than a decade Communism was all but gone in Eastern Europe beginning in Poland.

Nothing is coincidence with God.

How applicable are St. John Paul’s words to us.  How we can learn from his example and prayer.

It is no coincidence that we find ourselves nine days from Pentecost.  Let us learn from Pope John Paul to ask – implore – God, the Holy Spirit, to come upon our families, our parish, our diocese, our nation, our world during these times of crisis.  We can pray as he did:

Let your Spirit descend.
Let your Spirit descend.
and renew the face of the earth,
the face of this land. Amen.

Please consider praying the Novena to the Holy Spirit over the next nine days (Friday, May 22 – Saturday, May 30) for a greater fervor for Mass and the Sacraments; for many to return to Our Lord and His Church; and for religious liberty of the Church wherever She is being persecuted.

The Novena to the Holy Spirit can be found at:

https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/devotions/novena-to-the-holy-spirit-for-the-seven-gifts-309

God bless

FRVW

(Please know that I hope to write a second post on Friday re: Holy Communion Outside of Mass and related topics.)

An Angel’s Jealousy?

Dear Holy Trinity Parishioners!

Please forgive my tardiness in getting out information to all of you regarding our status at Holy Trinity.

Bishop Burbidge has asked us, along with all the parishes in Prince William, Loudoun, Fairfax, Arlington and Alexandria to wait two more weeks before we consider having public Masses.

The Bishop is very aware of our desire for public Masses and reception of Jesus in Holy Communion.  Therefore, he has extended the option to administer Holy Communion outside of Mass.  Yes, Mass is the Holy Sacrifice of Christ re-presented in time.  Yes, It is the greatest Action in history.  We pray that we will soon be able to participate at Mass in person.

St. Maximilian Kolbe once remarked: If angels could be jealous of man, they would be for one reason: Holy Communion.

Beginning tomorrow, Saturday, May 16th we will offer Holy Communion within the Rite of Holy Communion Outside of Mass.  Immediately following our 9:00am live streamed Mass each day, the priest will conduct a brief Holy Communion Service at the outside Adoration Chapel doors under the archway.  Parishioners in the state of grace will be able to walk up to Father to receive Jesus in Holy Communion.  You can then return to your car to make your thanksgiving after Holy Communion until Father gives the closing blessing.  Examples of Thanksgiving Prayers after Holy Communion would be:

Soul of Christ: https://jesuitprayer.org/custom/cards/anima-christi.pdf

Litany of Humility: https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/devotions/litany-for-humility-391

Prayers of the Angel of Fatima to the shepherd children: http://www.fatimacentennial.com/fatima-prayers

As we have further access to Our Lord in the Holy Eucharist we are asked to consider the following reminders – for complete details please see the diocesan website www.arlingtondiocese.org and Bishop Burbidge’s announcement at http://www.arlingtondiocese.org/coronavirus/:

Dispensation from obligation to Sunday Mass remains for everyone

Those vulnerable are encouraged to avoid public gatherings

Those sick and/or coughing are asked to avoid liturgical celebrations

We are asked to maintain 6 foot distance between persons

10 person group limit (inside the church)

Face coverings are expected

Disinfecting one’s hands before receiving Holy Communion is expected

Each communicant has the right to receive Holy Communion in the manner he chooses – on the tongue or on the hand

The faithful are asked to prayerfully consider reception of Holy Communion in the hand

No one may receive Holy Communion while wearing gloves

Please know that it will be a joy to offer you Our Lord, really, truly and substantially present in the Holy Eucharist!

May our reception of Jesus increase our love for Him and His Church; increase our love for each other; and increase our peace and joy in these times.

God bless

FRVW

Re-integration 2020

Dear Holy Trinity Parishioners!

Let us thank Our Lord through Our Lady for His many graces!

How is life going in the family? I am wondering about certain opportunities of grace between husbands and wives. For example, how many husbands, who are spending more hours at home than they previously did, are more appreciative of their wives’abilities around the house – especially when left home with the children?! Or, when asked, ‘Where are you going?’, wives aren’t so quick to complain that their husbands work outside the home?! Ah yes, the two shall become as one.

In light of our Governor’s announcement today, our Bishop has written an open letter to all Catholics of the Diocese of Arlington and a video on re-opening our parishes for public Masses to begin on May 15th. His letter and video can be found on the diocesan website: arlingtondiocese.org.

The Bishop mentions the following:

Churches can operate at a maximum of 50% capacity – unless a local jurisdiction determines otherwise.

There will still be a need to provide for proper social distancing and regular cleaning at each parish.

The Bishop is working with a team to help plan for reintegration. He will have guidelines for us this coming week.

The Bishop also reminds the faithful that the dispensation for anyone who has any concern about attending Mass is still in effect.

Please continue to ask Our Lord through His Mother – in this month of Our Lady – for a further opening of the sacraments to our people; prudence for our Bishop and Governor; as well as mercy and healing for those suffering from COVID-19.

God bless

FRVW

Mother’s Day: May Crowning and (Drive Thru) Adoration

Happy Mother’s Day to all of our mothers – spiritual and physical! We hope Our Lord blesses all of you through His Mother for your countless sacrifices.

As is our custom at Holy Trinity on Mother’s Day to crown Our Lady publicly, we will do so again. We will also have Her Son Exposed for Adoration.

Sunday, May 10th at 1:55pm we will crown an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary outside the church. We will then place Our Lord on the altar under the front door arch for Adoration until 3:00pm. During Adoration, we again invite all our parishioners to drive in front of the church for Adoration of Our Lord. At 2:30pm we will pray to Jesus through His Mother, Mary, in reciting the Rosary.

All will be live streamed on Holy Trinity’s Youtube channel: HT Videos.

We again ask everyone to remain in your cars during May Crowning, Adoration and Benediction. On Divine Mercy Sunday things worked very well.

God bless

FRVW

Consecration vs. Covid

Dear Holy Trinity Parishioners!

How are you? I hope your week has been one of close quarters, peace, joy, creativity, conversation and holiness!

You may be wondering at the title of this ‘note’. Yes, well, Our Lady always wins.

Friday, May 1st Archbishop Gomez, the President of our conference of Catholic Bishops will lead all Catholics, in union with our bishops, in a re-consecration of our country to Our Blessed Mother. (The Canadians will also be doing the same.) As the month of May is dedicated to Our Lady, this re-consecration is very appropriate in the midst of the coronavirus. Documents and livestream info are at lacatholics.org/consecration/. Please join Catholics of America in making this consecration for Our Lady’s Protection from the coronavirus.

Our Lord desires that we ask, seek and knock. He also is pleased when we go to Him through His Mother. Let us not forget that Jesus performed His first miracle at the Wedding Feast of Cana because His Mother asked Him! Let us implore Our Lady together in her month for a conversion of hearts and minds to Jesus and an end to this coronavirus!

Thank you very much for your prayers over the last two weeks. Fr. Carr has been given the ‘thumbs up’ from his doctor to resume his duties at the parish. You may recall last week’s blog post when I said Father Carr would have a two week quarantine. Actually, the rest of us in the rectory needed the two week quarantine – which ended today. For those who have COVID, the Center for Disease Control, gives the following guidance before public interaction:

  1. Free from fever for 72 hours – without medication
  2. Other symptoms have improved.
  3. 7 days have passed since beginning of symptoms.

Fr. Carr has hit all the above. I have consulted with the diocese as well throughout the last two weeks.

That said, we will begin our regular schedule of confessions this Saturday.

We do not have any word yet on when we will begin to have public Masses. Bishop Burbidge has assembled a team to help him identify when and how we can begin public Masses. Please continue your prayers for our bishop and those helping him in this process that Our Lord grant them wisdom and courage.

God bless

FRVW