Why We Genuflect

10-22-2017Pastor's LetterRev. Gregory B. Wilson, VF

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am happy to give you a couple of updates to some projects. First, the South Wing building – the "left arm" of the church courtyard: Contractor mobilization will begin any day now. We are blessed to have such caring participants and support from our diocese to bring this final phase of construction to completion with a projected date of completion of June 2018. As a reminder, this building – all handicapped-accessible – will house a gathering space about the size of upstairs Smith Hall, a conference room, and a small gift shop.

Also, the new Saint Teresa of Calcutta Hall – affectionately called "Mother Teresa Hall" – (which is also handicapped-accessible meeting space) should be completed by the end of this month. This building is located next to the church facing Union Street, with a rear entrance through the garden. Several parish groups are already reserving this marvelous space. We have worked hard to have the latest technology that can be utilize for various presentations. Special thanks to ouranonymous donor, whose gift helped make this possible.

Finally, regarding Calvary Cemetery: Road modifications begin after All Souls Day (Nov. 2), with a target completion before Christmas. We plan to keep access available as much as possible during repairs. More information is available from Patrick Wray at the parish office, or by email pwray@stmarysaiken.org.

Please note the upcoming Holy Day – All Saints Day – on November 1. Two Vigil Masses will be on Halloween, Oct. 31 at 5:30pm in the Church and at 7pm in Spanish in Old St. Mary's. Masses on the Day: 7am (Old St. Mary's), and 8:30am,12:00pm, and 5:30pm (church).

A brief reminder to all of our Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion: We are having our annual Day of Reflection on Nov. 4 beginning with Holy Mass at 8:00am and ending before lunch. The day is mandatory for all those who volunteer todistribute Holy Communion as part of their ongoing formation.

Finally, another insight from Fr. Kurt Belsole, OSB, on the liturgy: "Sometimes people will ask: 'Why do we genuflect before we enter a pew in church?' A genuflection is seen by the Church as a sign of reverence that signifies adoration. It is for that reason that Catholics genuflect to the Blessed Sacrament when they come into a church. A genuflection is made by bending only the right knee to the ground. This is done whether the Blessed Sacrament is reserved in the tabernacle or exposed for adoration. This sign of reverence is the same as that of the priest who genuflects on one knee at Mass after the consecration of the Sacred Host or the Precious Blood, and also before he shows the Host to the people before Communion. The genuflection is also made to the cross from the time of solemn adoration of the cross in the Good Friday liturgy until the beginning of the liturgy of the Easter Vigil."