The occasional, often ill-considered thoughts of a Roman Catholic permanent deacon who is ever grateful to God for his existence. Despite the strangeness we encounter in this life, all the suffering we witness and endure, being is good, so good I am sometimes unable to contain my joy. Deo gratias!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Liturgy, homiletics, etc.

This morning, in my capacity as my parish's director of liturgy, I attended a diocesan workshop focused on liturgical issues surrounding the Lent and Easter seasons. It was, I am sorry to admit, the first time I ever attended one of these periodic workshops. (I'm really not a big "workshop" guy.) I was, however, pleasantly surprised. Fr. Bob Webster, our diocesan director of liturgy, gave an excellent introductory talk on the Lenten and Easter liturgies of cycle B, and then conducted an equally informative workshop during which he provided us with some valuable suggestions. I was anticipating one of those touchy-feely sessions filled with questionable liturgical "adaptations." But what we received was just the opposite: a sound discussion on these two very important seasons of the liturgical year.

The workshop actually tied in nicely with a seminar I attended a week or so ago. (I'm just becoming a seminar-workshop fool.) It was conducted by Fr. Donald Senior, C.P., New Testament scholar and President of the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. The seminar, attended by priests and deacons of the diocese, addressed Preaching in Cycle B, with particular emphasis on the Gospel of Mark. It, too, was a valuable experience for me and Fr. Senior offered many unique insights into Mark that I will certainly revisit when I sit down to prepare my homilies during the coming liturgical year.

I have attended far too many sessions in the past that did nothing but waste my time, so many, in fact, that in recent years I have tried to avoid attending them whenever possible. How nice that my time was so well spent by attending these two programs.

God's peace...

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