Roundtable Ministry Welcomes Father Andrew Connolly's "Interactive Homilies"
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Less than 20 minutes after the end of the 10:45 Sunday mass, more than 3 dozen were seated or standing in Room 4 of the Parish Hall. When the talk got started, there were over 40, ready to engage in a thoughtful dialogue about the nature of the Holy Spirit, as presented in John's Gospel.
To start his homily in church, Fr. Connolly had inquired: "How many of you (parishioners) were baptized?" Virtually all raised hands. Then he asked: "How many of you are usually aware of the Holy Spirit that always lives within you--as Jesus spoke of it in this Gospel?" Very, very few raised hands were seen.
But if the Holy Trinity is composed of three parts, and if the Holy Spirit permeates the being of each and every person, and is actually God--why is it so often neglected and so little understood? This became the jumping off point of the post-mass dialogue at the Parish Hall.
Dick Koubec, one of the original founders of the Roundtable Ministry at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal in the 1990s said, after the lively encounter and group discussion:
" I thought the discussion was brilliant. It is TOO rare that we Catholics actually pause after Mass to process what we experienced during Mass, especially the all- too-brief homily.
I was deeply moved hearing you and our fellow parishioners discuss one of the most challenging concepts of our Catholic faith - the role of the Holy Spirit in the Trinity.
I was awed by how you drew us into this complex topic in such a human and touching way. This was an extraordinary moment in the life of the parish.
We (Roundtable Committee members who helped organize and promote the session) anticipated a half hour conversation; we anticipated 20 people. We doubled both."
THE POST-MASS HOMILY DISCUSSION SESSIONS WITH FATHER ANDY, and hosted by the Roundtable, will be an occasional but ongoing thing, as long as parishioner interest remains at a high level. What's not to like? Future post-mass gatherings will be announced in advance, including Church Bulletin notices.
14th Century painting by Lorenzo Monaco was typical of its time depicting the Holy Spirit as a dove. CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE & VIEW.
The Core of What Jesus Said about the Holy Spirit in John / Chapter 14
15 “If you love me, you will obey my commandments. 16 I will ask the Father, and he will give you another helper who will be with you forever. 17 That helper is the Spirit of Truth. The world cannot accept him, because it doesn’t see or know him. You know him, because he lives with you and will be in you.
18 “I will not leave you all alone. I will come back to you. 19 In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. You will live because I live. 20 On that day you will know that I am in my Father and that you are in me and that I am in you. 21 Whoever knows and obeys my commandments is the person who loves me. Those who love me will have my Father’s love, and I, too, will love them and show myself to them.”
25 “I have told you this while I’m still with you. 26 However, the helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything. He will remind you of everything that I have ever told you.