Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Extraordinary Jaunts {Sundays in Seattle}

Ryan, Joseph, Peter and Peter enjoy baked goodies.
In this Year of Faith, our family set a goal of participating in and growing more familiar with the 'Extraordinary Form' (Latin) Mass.  This form of the Mass is not offered in our city, or county, or neighboring counties, but it is offered at North American Martyrs in Seattle, about a 90 mile drive from home.  FSSP priests pastor this technically 'homeless' parish, which worships at St. Alphonsus Church and at Holyrood Cemetery Chapel in Shoreline.  This ancient ~extraordinary~ form of our Holy Mass almost disappeared in my lifetime after rapid changes implemented following the Second Vatican Council in the 1960's.  I don't remember the 'old' Mass, nor was I taught about it in my Catholic upbringing; but I always fostered a special attraction to the enlarged, framed black and white photograph of my parents' Nuptial Mass, said in the 'old' form at Holy Rosary in West Seattle.

The 'Ordinary Form' (Novus Ordo) Mass which we know, love and attend daily at Sacred Heart follows basically the same 'order of events' but with significant differences, not the least of which is the language in which the Mass is said and the manner in which we receive our Lord in Holy Communion. Following along in the little red booklets offered at the entrance, or fumbling along with the 1962 (heirloom) Missals we have inherited, we can mostly keep up with the Mass and prayerfully worship. The solemnity with which the Latin Mass is celebrated, the profound reverence and the decorum of the congregation are awe inspiring to say the least.  The preaching is certainly not for the faint of heart!

Our special Sunday journeys to Seattle punctuate our ordinary calendar and offer us extraordinary ways to keep holy the Lord's Day. 
Peter holds his God-brother Samuel
Meeting in the middle, each family driving about an hour, we celebrated a recent Sunday in Seattle with our dear friends from Tacoma.  Aileen's family honored her wish to attend Latin Mass and we combined the main event with a tasty side-trip to a bakery a few blocks from the hospital in Ballard where Joseph was born almost 15 years ago.  'Ballard Blue,' the first house Tim and I owned happens to be just a few blocks from the Church, so we are familiar with the surrounds, though the area has certainly been further developed and more densely populated since we moved to Bellingham in 1998.
Bridget, Samuel and Aileen, together on Sunday morn
King Tut's exhibit at the Pacific Science Center, another Sunday side-trip during Zachary's Christmas break, offered a glimpse of history for about the price of a sarcophagus.  Being linguistically inclined, Zachary especially enjoyed the inscriptions on the various artifacts.  King Tut's name (or one of his names) included a sign meaning 'manifestation', which when being viewed by those of us celebrating the Epiphany (which means Manifestation) held special significance.  King Tut, you may have been a king, but you were not God. 


Brothers in Seattle
Spending time at Great Grandma's house on a Sunday afternoon included being catered to and well loved.  Grandma and I feigned interest in the Seahawks game, while the guys intently cheered for the home team, which on that day reigned victorious.  The views from her windows overlooking the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains beyond are phenomenal, but sitting in the company of my 95 year old Grandma would be a pleasure in any environment.
Guests of Great Grandma for the Seahawks playoff game; watching her double-decker TV
Peter cheering for the Seahawks in his Sunday best

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