Last weekend we had our luncheon and devotional talk for lectors of the parish. For our discussion we focused on the first chapter of a section of Vatican II Council’s Constition on Divine Revelation, entitled “Sacred Scripture, Its Inspiration and Divine Interpretation”. In this paragraph is explained the manner by which God inspired sacred authors to write down without error those things God wanted in the sacred writings for the sake of our salvation. All the while God inspired these authors and protected them from error; they still acted as true human authors. When we interpret Scripture, we try our best to consider what the human author might have intended, and what his immediate hearers would have understood; but we also try to figure out the meaning of the passage in the divine scheme of salvation history, considering the entire Deposit of the Faith. Trying to grasp what God intended through a particular passage, we often resort to a fourfold interpretation: the literal meaning (what the words seem plainly to mean); and a threefold spiritual meaning: the typological (Old Testament persons, places, events foreshadowing New Testament ones), the tropological or moral (what the passage says about the moral life of the human person), the anagogical (how a passage points to the last things: judgment, purgatory, hell, heaven). Sometimes we will also look for allegorical meaning: how a passage symbolizes the life of Christ, the Church, the Saints, the sacraments.
Many thanks to our lectors who so faithfully carry out their ministry, I have been impressed with how thoroughly our lectors prepare for this function, and how well they execute it. Many thanks also to Mary Nieto and everybody else that prepared the luncheon and helped clean up afterwards.
On a practical note I want to mention a few plans for our Paulding campus. I have celebrated four baptisms now, and I am not really comfortable having the baptismal font down in the narthex. The narthex is not a sacred enough space; rather, it is meant for gathering. It is true, however, that traditionally the baptismal font has been located near the entrance of churches, in order to symbolize the way baptism is the spiritual entry into the Church. That is probably why our font used to be in the back of the nave, where now there are about eight movable chairs. I have already seen that we need those seats sometimes, so it does not make sense to move the font back there. Instead, I am planning on placing the font up to the left side of the sanctuary, under the statutes of Joseph and Mary. I have been told that the font was there at one point in our parish’s history. A new holy water stand is being created for us for the narthex entry.
We have considered how to construct a confessional off the nave of the church, where there used to be one–where now there is a little shrine to the Sacred Heart, and a picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Since I learned that the electric piano in this space would not fit up in the choir loft, I plan on leaving the piano there. We can still construct a two-booth confessional, one booth for the priest, and another for the penitent. The Church asks that confessionals be prominent, so people see the connection between confession and the Eucharist (and so they are encouraged to use it!!). A new confessional will help towards this end. A new confessional will also keep me from having to do what is quite imprudent in our post-scandal days: sitting in a small, dimly lit closet-type room into which anybody can walk, with no solid divider between priest and penitent, and after which anybody can claim anything. I believe we have all heard stories of priests whose reputations have been ruined by accusations. And false accusations are never sufficiently repaired. This new confessional should be constructed in November. Some parishioners have stepped forward to offer help. The Sacred Heart statue will be put at the back of the nave where it used to be. I am not sure yet where Our Lady of Guadalupe will go.
Have a blessed week!
In cordibus Iesu et Mariae,