Friday, June 6, 2008

Catholic Identity...

Did you see Hugh McNichol's article at the Catholic News Agency?

Catholic Identity...parochial school style!
By Hugh J. McNichol

"Growing up in a Roman Catholic, inner-city parish of Saint Gabriel really left little room to think of expressing one’s Catholic identity on a regular basis. For the most part, we didn’t even know there was anything other than Catholicism out there as a means of religious expressionism. Of course, once in a while we would try to get into the local John Chambers Presbyterian Church…to see what it looked like, or maybe even an excursion into the Greek Orthodox Church at 28th and Snyder, but that was about it. The ethnically insulated parish of Saint Gabriel was especially protective of our unique Catholic identity and we expressed that identity on a daily basis even if we did not realize it. Let me give you a few “Catholic-isms” that pervaded our neighborhood. Of course on Fridays, throughout the whole year the fragrances of flounder and other fish by-products, usually Mrs. Pauls could be orafactorilly noticed throughout all of Gray’s Ferry, the fast before the reception of Holy Communion was observed before Sunday Masses (hence the large participation in the 6:30 am Mass), Catholic uniforms dominated the scene every day in Saint Gabriel’s School, every night Catholic sporting events came to an instant conclusion at the ringing of the Angelus and visiting other local Catholic churches was just about as ecumenical as we would dare to go!... (Continued here)

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