Archives: May 2019

Brother David Steindl-Rast is a 90+ year old Benedictine monk from Austria. In a 2015 interview with Krista Tippet of On Being he posited that every religion starts with some sort of miracle. Soon though, the miracle is cloaked in structures and institutions, developed to protect the miracle. Before long these structures and institutions not only protect but also obscure the miracle. Inevitably, the pains to safeguard the structures become more important than the efforts to reveal and celebrate the miracle.

Our miracle, or better, our Mystery is the empty tomb. It is the fact that God became one of us, lived among us, died for us, and rose from the dead so that we might live. That was the simple but profound experience and message of the earliest followers of Jesus. As the number of followers grew, structures had to be established. And as more questions were asked about our Mystery, theologies needed to be discussed and developed.

To date, we have some 2000 years worth of theological elucidation and ecclesiastical manifestation. And while these developed to portray, to protect and to promote our Mystery they have also done much harm to that very Mystery. When protecting the structures and institutions became more important than celebrating the Mystery, many scandals started to befall Christianity. Just think about the many divisions the Body of Christ has endured over the centuries. Had Christians paid more attention to our shared Mystery rather than the separating trappings around it we might be better off today. More recently, had the Church paid more attention to the Mystery of our Church rather than to the institution of the Church the evil of child abuse in our Church could have been addressed much earlier and with greater honesty.

Brother Steindl-Rast compares the beginnings of all religions with a Volcano. “There was fire, there was heat, there was light: the light of mystical insight, the glow of ethical commitment, and the fire of ritual celebration... But, as that stream of lava flowed down the sides of the mountain, it began to cool off and turn into rock. Dogmatism, moralism, ritualism: all are layers of ash deposits and volcanic rock that separate us from the fiery magma deep down below. But there are fissures and clefts in the rock. These represent the great men and women who reformed and renewed religious tradition from within. In one way or another, this is our task, too.”

During the Sacred Triduum we celebrated our Mystery: the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. We did that without great theological debate or ecclesiastical posturing. It was a simple and pure celebration of our Mystery. Let us hold on to that. Let us not be blinded by all the trappings and extravagance of our church, rather let us always behold and embrace our Mystery: the source of “mystical insight, the glow of ethical commitment, and the fire of ritual celebration.”

 

BASILICA Magazine 

As we continue our parish’s year-long sesquicentennial celebration, this issue looks at some people at The Basilica who said “yes” to God’s invitations to service, using varied gifts to form one body in order to do Christ’s work abundantly.

One person provided beautiful bells to our parish, named after “everyday” saints who also answered God’s call. Some assist and guide our parish’s strategic planning and campus space initiatives. Others lend their voices to our Cathedral choir, performing in an interfaith Together in Hope concert. Many more help at Basilica events, including the 25th annual Basilica Block Party, the recent wedding reunion, or the upcoming all school reunion.

Melissa Streit, Editor
 

Thank you to the dedicated volunteer team who created the issue.

BASILICA magazine spring 2019
 

BASILICA magazine spring 2019_lowrez

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inside this issue:

Our Parish, Our Future
Focusing on the next five years 
by Bob Kleiber 

The Future of The Basilica
Planning for our space needs 
by Kathy Andrus 

Our Teresa of Calcutta Hall
A place of service, fellowship, and community 
by Melissa Streit 

The Arizona Borderlands
Where humanitarian aid is being criminalized 
by Chris Serres 

Mary, Untier of Knots
New icon commissioned 
by Elyse Rethlake 

Walker Art Center’s New Executive Director
An interview with Mary Ceruti 
by Johan M.J. vanParys, Ph.D. 

The Basilica Wedding Reunion
by Mae Desaire 

The Journey of Our Bells
Our invitation to the city 
by Toni McNaron 

The Basilica’s Caring Ministries
How can we help? 
by Rachel Newman

Together In Hope
The transformative power of music 
by Nick Hansen 

The Basilica Block Party
Twenty-five years of rock on the block 
by Melissa Streit

 

The award-winning BASILICA magazine is sponsored by The Basilica Landmark, a 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to preserve, restore, and advance the historic Basilica of Saint Mary for all generations. 

BASILICA is published twice a year (spring and fall) with a circulation of 20,000. 
For advertising information please contact Liz Legatt.
 

Parishioners, please be aware of a current email scam. Fraud emails are being sent out from a gmail account impersonating Fr. Bauer. Do not open these emails or respond to them. 

More information about this scam can be found in a recent article from the Catholic Spirit.
https://thecatholicspirit.com/featured/online-scam-targets-priests-parishioners/ 

For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser.  
http://usccb.org/bible/readings/052619.cfm  

This Sunday we celebrate the Sixth Sunday of the season of Easter, and once again our Gospel is taken from the Gospel of John.   There are three distinct sections to this Gospel.  In the first section, Jesus reminds his disciples that:  “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our dwelling with them.”   In the second section, Jesus speaks of the Holy Spirit, “the Advocate whom the Father will send in my name………”   In the third section, Jesus reminds his disciples that “Peace” is his farewell gift to them.  Therefore they are not to let their “hearts be troubled or afraid.”   

Each of these sections is rich in meaning.  In the first section, while the idea of God dwelling with his people would not have been new, the intimacy and immediacy of this indwelling would have been original.   In the second section Jesus introduces his disciples to the Holy Spirit.  Again, the people of this time would have a sense of God’s Spirit.  And yet, here and later in John’s Gospel, Jesus speaks of the Spirit as one with, yet distinct from the Father.  Finally, in the third section Jesus talks about giving his disciples peace.  We often think of peace as the absence of strife or tension.  For the people of Jesus’ time, however, peace or shalom had a much deeper and richer meaning.  It was an abiding sense of God’s presence.   

Our first reading this Sunday is from the Acts of the Apostles.  It is the story of one of the first conflicts in the early church.  Specifically, it deals with the question of whether gentile converts to Christianity needed to be circumcised in order to be saved.  (Circumcision was a sign of the Jewish convent with God.)  This Sunday’s reading skips Paul and Barnabas’ trip to Jerusalem to speak to the “apostles and elders about this question” and jumps to the decision itself:  “It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us not to place on you any burden beyond these necessities, namely, to abstain from meat sacrificed to animals, and from unlawful marriage.”     

Our second reading this Sunday is from the Book of Revelation continues John’s vision of the “holy city Jerusalem.”  

Questions for Reflection/Discussion:
1.  Have you ever experienced God dwelling with you?  
2.  On occasion I have felt the peace that Jesus spoke of in our Gospel today.   When you have experienced this peace in your life?  
3. In our first reading the apostles and elders were bold in their declaration that:  It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us………”    When have you felt the Spirit guiding you in your life? 

 

Snack Pack

Basilica Serves

As we celebrate 150 years as a faith community, we recognize and honor the role of St. Vincent de Paul Ministries in our parish. In 1868, one of the first ministries organized by our parish community was St. Vincent de Paul. Since then, the virtues inherent in this work have been fundamental to the fabric of our community.
 
The spirituality of St. Vincent de Paul has five core characteristics. We are all invited to embrace and reflect these in our life and work. 
 
 
 
Simplicity
St. Vincent de Paul teaches, “Jesus…expects us to have the simplicity of a dove. This means giving a straightforward opinion about things in the way we honestly see them…It also means doing things without any double-dealing or manipulation, our intention being focused solely on God.” 
 
Humility 
With an attitude of a servant, St. Vincent de Paul says, “The poor have much to teach you. You have much to learn from them.” Humility can be described as a predisposition to respect and learn from everyone—especially those out of our comfort zone.
 
Solidarity
St. Vincent de Paul states, “We must love our neighbor as being made in the image of God and as an object of His love.” We’re called to recognize the gifts of diversity and listen to the voices of those in need. We find fulfillment as we heal broken relationships and find unity. 
 
Balance between prayer and action
The more St. Vincent de Paul embraced the discipline of prayer the greater his ability to act in love. Through prayer, we receive what we need to be bold in service. Through action rooted in relationship, we find God. St. Vincent de Paul says, “Service without reflection is just work – just another task.”
 
Creating lasting systemic change 
St. Vincent de Paul continually asked the hard questions: Why is there such inequity? Why are so many in need? We are challenged to meet immediate needs. Yet we are also challenged to go beyond service and accompany another to understand their story, and uncover systems that oppress or destroy peace and dignity. 
 
Basilica Serves: Rooted in the spirituality of St. Vincent de Paul, we are all invited to consider three service options this spring and summer. 
 
1. Join a service opportunity at The Basilica: We have organized service events for all ages. Come and learn about community needs and take direct action to respond. For example, join the Snack Pack event in the Lower Level today, providing food for summer programs at Ascension Schools or volunteer for Families Moving Forward in June. 
 
2. Participate in a service opportunity at a partner organization: Look for organized ways to serve at partner sites. For example, in June, gather to support the work of Bridging MN as we provide needed essentials for those moving out of homelessness, or participate in Habitat for Humanity in August
 
3. Serve in your own way that fits your life: Find ways to help in your neighborhood, family or work. Live the values of our faith in your everyday life. Share your stories at The Basilica. Let’s celebrate the ripples of love in our community. 
 
Go to www.mary.org/Basilicaserves for more information.
 

 

For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser.
http://usccb.org/bible/readings/051919.cfm 

This Sunday we celebrate the Fifth Sunday of Easter.   Once again our Gospel for this weekend is taken from the Gospel of John.  It comes to us in two distinct sections.  

At first blush, the opening words of the first section of this Gospel are a bit puzzling:  “When Judas had left them, Jesus said, ‘Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.’”  The question naturally arises as to why are we reading about Judas during the Easter season?   The answer is that the setting of this Gospel is the last supper.  For John, Jesus’ glorification is rooted in and grows out of his suffering.  Judas’ departure set in motion the course of events that ultimately led to Jesus’ glorification.   And since Jesus’ resurrection is his glorification, there is a certain appropriateness to the mention of Judas on this Fifth Sunday of our Easter season.  

The second section of this Gospel begins:  “My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.   I give you a new commandment:  love one another.”   Now while this is not a new commandment, what is new is the next sentence:   “As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.”   In these words Jesus really “raises the bar” in regard to what is expected of his disciples.   

Our first reading this Sunday is again taken from the Acts of the Apostles.   It tells of the missionary efforts of Paul and Barnabas to various cities.  The last sentence tells of their arrival at Antioch.   We are told:  “And when they arrived, they called the church together and reported what God had done with them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles.”   

Our second reading this Sunday is from the Book of Revelation.   It presents us with a “vision” of John of a “new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God,”   with a loud voice saying: “Behold God’s dwelling is with the human race.   He will dwell with them and they will be his people……….”  

Questions for Reflection/Discussion:    

  1. The challenge for us to love one another as we have been loved by Jesus can be daunting.  When have you been successful at it?   When have you failed? 
  2. While most of us are not called to be missionaries in foreign countries, we are all called to share the message of Jesus Christ in our own ways.   Can you recall a time when you have given witness to Christ by what you have said or done?
  3. When have you been aware of God’s dwelling with you?
     

Twenty-five years ago, had anyone told me that I would become a member of a Church that didn’t ordain women, I would have laughed. I was Lutheran and interested in becoming a pastor. During my senior year in college, I shared these hopes with our college pastor who laid out the long path toward ordination. Realizing that starting a family was more important at that time of my life I postponed the pursuit of ordained ministry.

In 1995 I was invited to interview for the choral director position at The Basilica. The invitation didn’t come as a complete surprise. I had just conducted choirs of The Basilica, Temple Israel, and the College of Saint Benedict in an oratorio commissioned by The Basilica: Uvacharta Bachayim: Choose Life by Mona Lyn Reese. I was surprised though when this important Catholic church offered me, a Lutheran, the job.

Four years later I became Catholic. This wasn’t a big leap. The Lutheran Church in which I grew up taught me the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. So, with Johan as my sponsor and the choir watching through the grates of the sanctuary I was confirmed on April 11, 1998. I truly felt I had come home despite the unsettling fact that the old hope of becoming a pastor was still very much alive.

These past 20 years have not always been easy. I have been called a “turncoat.” I have wondered if I am a hypocrite? Why am I in a Church that doesn’t ordain women? I have indeed wrestled with the decision to remain. 
Though tremendously important to me, I can’t claim that the Cathedral Choir and Choristers or the opportunity to make music in our glorious space are the primary reasons I stay. I also don’t stay because of humans, ordained or not. Human endeavors will fail. Humans themselves fail and sin as we have seen in the heart-breaking abuse cases. If I had put my faith in humans I would have left long ago. 

Rather, the Eucharist, sharing in the mystery of the Body and Blood of Christ is the primary reason I stay. I love being part of a Church that has a mystery we struggle to comprehend at its center: the presence of Christ in the Eucharist. It is something that is so much greater than ourselves and yet one with ourselves. 

Blessedly, I have also been afforded the opportunity to be a pastor of sorts in this Catholic parish. My beloved choir members recognize this. And I am truly blessed to serve them. I also help to form the faith of many children. I have presided at Stations of the Cross, Morning, Midday, and Evening prayer. This has certainly fed my pastoral sense. I cherish these opportunities and am grateful for them.

I may not agree with everything the Catholic Church stands for and I will continue to question and struggle. But I will do so coming to the table with all of you to remember who we are—beloved children of God, the Body of Christ. 

 

The Basilica Landmark has announced a funding initiative to refurbish the essential community space in the lower level of the church, the Teresa of Calcutta Hall. This primary gathering space in the lower level of the church serves the daily physical, mental, and emotional needs of thousands in the community. From homelessness, employment, and immigration support to interfaith collaborations, training seminars, artist exhibits and beyond—the funds raised will be designated to refurbish the essential community space.

The Basilica Landmark will kick-off this fundraising initiative, know as the Fund-A-Need, at the Landmark Spark—a special evening dedicated to keeping the flame alive for the beloved Basilica. The Landmark Spark event is reimagined this year to amp up the classic event to a night that ignites. 

The Landmark Spark event chair, Karen Capiz, is especially passionate about improving the community space used to support our neighbors in need. Karen volunteers with one of the many outreach programs and believes, “Having a welcoming, clean, comfortable space is important to best serve everyone who comes through The Basilica’s doors.”

The Basilica Landmark Board of Directors invites the community to support our effort to refurbish the essential community space. It is important that the physical building reflect our message of welcome and hospitality to all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Landmark Spark
Saturday, May 18, 2019
The Machine Shop
300 2nd St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

The signature fundraising event features creative cuisine, specialty cocktails, and fantastic giving opportunities to support The Basilica Landmark.

To purchase tickets or make a gift to support the Fund-A-Need initiative visit www.thebasilicalandmark.org.

 

 

 

 

For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser.
http://usccb.org/bible/readings/051219.cfm    

In our three year cycle of readings on the Fourth Sunday of Easter, we always read from the tenth chapter of John’s Gospel.  In this chapter Jesus identifies himself as the Good Shepherd and his disciples as the sheep.   The section from chapter ten we read this Sunday is very brief.   It is only three verses:  “Jesus said: My sheep hear my voice; I know them and they follow me.   I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.  No one can take them out of my hand.  My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one can take them out of my Father’s hand.  The Father and I are one.” 

We should not presume that the brevity of this Gospel suggests it is unimportant. In fact quite the opposite is true.  This Gospel tells us three very important things.  1.  Jesus is continually calling us to follow him.  We need to listen, though, in order to hear that call.  2.  We cannot accidentally fall away from God or be snatched out of God’s hand.  Rather, we are meant for eternal life with God.  3.  Jesus is able to promise these things because he is one with the Father, not subordinate to the Father. 

In our first reading this Sunday we continue to read from the Acts of the Apostles.   In the section we read this weekend, Paul and Barnabas continue to preach about Jesus Christ.   However, since the Jews of that area had rejected their preaching, they preached instead to the Gentiles, telling the Jews: “It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first, but since you reject it and condemn yourselves as unworthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles.”   When they continue to encounter resistance they “shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium.”  

Our second reading this Sunday is once again taken from the book of Revelation.  It presents a “vision” that told of a future time when “They will not hunger or thirst anymore, nor will the sun or any heat strike them.”  

Questions for Reflection/Discussion:

  1.  Jesus said that my sheep hear my voice.  How do you “listen” for the voice of Jesus?
  2. What helps you to listen for the voice of Jesus?   
  3.  We are reminded in our first reading that God intends salvation to be for all people.  Why do think some people want to restrict/limit the number who can be saved?