Sunday was Pentecost Sunday. Sunday I also celebrated my 40th Anniversary of Ordination with a special Mass in our parish church followed by a great dinner. It was "billed" as a celebration of Faith of the family of God, and so it was. There were friends from just about each parish in which I served joining with our own parishioners to sing the praise of God and celebrate the life of the Spirit. It was a great birthday celebration for the Church.
Our liturgy began at 2:30 pm but was preceded by a half hour of faith filled music by our music program comprised of the Young Voices and Adult Choirs, our Bell Ringers and all of our musicians (organ, keyboard, guitar, trumpet, flute, percussion, cello, among others). Our choirs take off for the summer months, and this was sort of their celebration of a great year of liturgical music. They pulled out all the stops, and the music was inspiring enough to have everyone belting out in praise. I was joined by a couple of my brother priests, one of whom shares the same ordination date and ceremony, Father Peter Peretti. Another two classmates joined us for the dinner - Msgr. Paul Fitzmaurice and Father David Schorr of the Pittsburgh Diocese.
Following the Mass 170 of us retired to the parish hall for a delicious buffet dinner and fellowship. All said that they had a great time, as did I. I am grateful to my staff and especially my sister, Janie, for all of their hard work and committed love. I am grateful to friends who travelled from my parish assignments and elsewhere to be with us. I am grateful to my relatives, some of whom travelled great distances to be with us. I am very grateful for the love and support of my parish family of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. For me, it was a wonderful way of celebrating Church with friends and fellow travellers on this journey of Faith. God is good!