Saturday, December 08, 2007

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

I took in this morning's Mass at St. Mary of the Angels parish near the neighborhood where we are staying here in Chicago. It's a very beautiful church.
From Chicago Trip ...

The church was almost completely full for Mass this morning.

The liturgy was about as close as you can get to a Tridentine Mass without it actually being in Latin. Opus Dei staffs the church. There were about a half-dozen altar boys -- no altar girls. The altar boys wore red cassocks with white surplices and all the priests wore cassocks too. The book of the Gospel was incensed before the reading. All responses were sung. The altar and all the priests' hands were incensed before communion. Only the presider took the Blood of Christ at communion and the Body of Christ was distributed exclusively on the tongue. No kneeling at a communion rail, though and the priests faced the congregation rather than have their backs to us. It was about a 90 minute Mass.

Being a feast day in honor of the conception of their parish's namesake, the folks attending SMA for Mass today were very well dressed. There were many beautiful little girls in their pretty velvet holiday dresses and little boys in tiny jackets and ties.

The music was performed/arranged well and reminded me of a chamber orchestra with accompanying chorus -- violins, french horn, organ, and perhaps some other instruments. Can't say for certain since the musicians and singers were in a choir loft.

The church also had some beautiful statuary. This one, which appears to me to be the Agony in the Garden, was really touching.
From Chicago Trip ...

Here's St. Michael:
From Chicago Trip ...

After Mass, we went to a neighborhood art/craft fair. Very beautiful handcrafted jewelry was available there, among many other handicrafts. Hubby bought a couple of candles he liked. After that, we did some shopping at various stores nearby. Eventually we headed towards downtown and had a very late lunch at Portillo's. Santa was there, so I decided to ask him for my Christmas present.
From Chicago Trip ...

Funny thing was, I asked Santa (because surely he would know!) which way to Michigan Avenue, and he sent me to ask one of the Portillo's staff. Hubby concluded it must be because the reindeer magically know the way, so Santa doesn't have to. Santa did say he would see me in a couple of weeks, however. I am feeling pretty good I won't get a lump of coal this year. ;)

After Portillo's it was off to buy some gourmet chocolate, then we went to Holy Name Cathedral to take in a Vigil Mass.

Holy Name Cathedral is beautiful in its own way. Its interior is a lot more rustic style than most cathedrals I have seen. Instead of a lot of gilding and mosaics, the interior has lots and lots of woodwork in the ceiling, especially. The stations of the cross appeared to be sculpted bronze, beautiful with a rough-hewn appearance. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to grab any pics of the inside, but there are some photos of it on their web site.

After the Cathedral, we went to dinner. Going back home to STL tomorrow.

1 comment:

James said...

Nice story about Chicago, Beth!Hope you had a great time up there.