Blog

The last few weeks have been tough. The news cycle has been heartbreaking. We continue to struggle with the ongoing pandemic. People are tired - physically, emotionally and spiritually. I hope you’ll take time to take care of yourself and to take advantage of The Basilica’s services and programs to nourish your spirit.  Visit the events calendar at mary.org/news.

Now, for some good news:

Parish Council Elections:  This spring we have a great roster of candidates seeking election on behalf of a variety of ministry areas of the parish. Voting will be active on the parish website through Friday, June 13 at 5:00pm. Please take a moment to read the candidates’ biographies and cast your vote for your parish representatives at mary.org/vote.

Parish Council Chair:  I am delighted to announce that Dr. Jill Reilly will be succeeding me as chair of the Parish Council.

Jill has belonged to The Basilica since 2007. She served in various ways including six years on Finance Committee, work on the Strategic Plan, and the Assessment Team. Dr. Reilly was President of the Academy of Holy Angels (AHA) and Superintendent of Schools within the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. She received the 2008 Leading with Faith Award from The Catholic Spirit.  Jill is a wife, mother of three adult children, and grandmother of six. You can get in touch with Jill at mary.org/parishcouncil.

Celebrating Fr. Baur and Welcoming Fr. Griffith: We’ll have an opportunity to say farewell and thank you to Fr. John Bauer as he departs to become pastor of Our Lady of Lourdes parish in Minneapolis. Mark your calendars for ice cream socials after Mass on June 19, 25 and 26. We also look forward to welcoming Fr. Dan Griffith as pastor and rector of The Basilica in July and at his Installation Mass on August 13 at 5:00pm.

The Basilica Fund Update: Thanks to parishioner support, we are so close to our philanthropic goals for this year! We have just $48,000 left to raise by June 30 to continue powering our mission, ministries and programs. If you have already given this year, thank you! If you have not yet made a gift, please consider a gift of any size by June 30 to help meet our goals. The Basilica Fund powers everything we do, and every gift matters. Visit mary.org/give to give.

As this is my final newsletter as Parish Council chair, I want to express my deep gratitude for the opportunity to serve. It has been an honor, and I look forward to seeing you around The Basilica!

Katelin Richter Davis
Chair, Parish Council
The Basilica of Saint Mary

 

“We are Parthians, Medes, and Elamites, inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya near Cyrene, as well as travelers from Rome, both Jews and converts to Judaism, Cretans and Arabs, yet we hear them speaking in our own tongues of the mighty acts of God.” Acts 2: 9-11

I was about 12 years old when I was asked to proclaim the first reading on the Solemnity of Pentecost. As our lectors know, this is not an easy reading to proclaim. Mother Hildegard, my dear great-aunt, worked with me on the pronunciation of the many names in this reading. And she seized the opportunity to elaborate on what happened that first Pentecost.

My great-aunt’s introduction to the early church opened my imagination to the world in which the Gospel was first proclaimed some 2000 years ago. This lively Pentecost scene somehow reminded me of the Sunday Market in Brussels, the capital of Belgium and Europe. When I went there for the first time, I could not believe my eyes. Coming from a small and traditional town in Flanders, the sight of people from all around the world made me dizzy with excitement. I could not believe the exuberant and colorful clothes. Competing music in unknown languages blared from the different booths. I tasted dishes previously unknown to me. And to this day, I remember being olfactorily overcome by the scent of the many different spices. It was an absolute delight and it felt like I was traveling from country to country in a matter of moments. This is how I imagined Jerusalem on a holiday in the time of the apostles. A rich cacophony of humanity in all its diversity: just like the cradle of the church.

Visualizing my great aunt’s description of that first Pentecost, I knew exactly where the apostles were. I saw them hiding in the upper room. In stark contrast to the festive atmosphere outside, the apostles were laden with angst and burdened by uncertainty. And then, in an instant, everything changed. Aflame with the Holy Spirit, they threw open the doors and windows, burst into the streets and started speaking of the marvelous deeds of God.

This happened with so much energy that it drew the attention of passers-by and quieted them down. And to everyone’s amazement, they all heard the apostles speak in their native tongue. The Gospel of Jesus Christ was proclaimed in multiple languages and received by people from different countries, cultures, races, and ethnicities. This is a powerful testimony to the fact that though we all believe in the one, true God, we are as diverse as our world.

In contrast to this great Pentecost scene, where the diversity of the people was honored and lifted up, a dangerous fog of cultural fear and anger clouds our world today. These days diversity is met with suspicion and often leads to division.

The political world is particularly affected by this. Yet, our church is not immune to this either. Rather than welcoming the richness that comes from respectful dialogue between diverse races and opinions we clammer for uniformity. And rather than listening to one another we resort to speaking louder and louder in a desperate attempt to win whichever battle we are waging. Sadly, we lack the inner peace and the mutual respect needed to listen intently to one another and learn from one another. Tragically, we seem to have lost the way of the apostles who were able, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit to rejoice in the richly diverse tapestry of humanity.

I look forward to the day when it will be said:

“We are republicans, democrats and independents; rich and poor; liberals, conservatives and moderates; women and men and children; gay and straight; Africans, Asians and Americans; Australians and Europeans, yet we hear them speaking in our own tongue of the mighty acts of God.”

What an exciting and holy time that will be. May that day come soon!

 

All Mass recordings can be found at Mass Recordings

Monday, May 30

Tuesday, May 31
Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Wednesday, June 1

Thursday, June 2

Friday, June 3

I have never had much luck retrieving my luggage when I have to take two different flights to reach my destination. In fact for several years, it was pretty much inevitable that my luggage would not appear on the baggage carousel when I got to my final destination. Even now, when I approach baggage claim after landing, I can anticipate my luggage will be one of the last ones to come down the chute. I have learned to accept I am not one of those fortunate individuals who, when they get to baggage claim, within minutes can be walking out the door pulling their suitcase behind them. I have also learned that when I travel with people, I need to tell them not to get their hopes up for an early exit from the airport after the flight.

On a flight several months ago, after walking from one of the furthest possible terminals to baggage claim, I got my hopes up that because of the long walk, just maybe my baggage would be on the carrousel when I arrived. Unfortunately, this was not the case. In fact, the baggage carousel had not even started moving. I did notice, though, the carousel next to me was moving and on it were several forlorn pieces of luggage going round and round. It immediately occurred to me that they were probably left over from an earlier flight, and no one had yet arrived to claim them. Perhaps their owners had stopped to get a bite to eat or have drink before proceeding to baggage claim. Whatever the reason, they just kept going round and round on the baggage carousel. I had time to notice this because, while my luggage carrousel had finally begun to move and baggage began to emerge, my luggage was once again one of the last pieces to appear.    

This memory came back to me a few weeks ago when the responsory after the scripture reading for evening prayer was: “Claim me once more as your own Lord and have mercy on me.”  As I reflected on these words, it occurred to me that with God, we never have to worry about being “unclaimed” and ending up in the lost and found. God loves us, and even if we don’t acknowledge that love or turn away from it, God never stops loving us. God patiently waits for us to recognize and respond to God’s love. The thing is God never forces God’s love on us. Rather God waits for us to allow ourselves to be “claimed” by God.

On more than one occasion in my life I have felt like the unclaimed luggage on a baggage carousel—going round and round, but in reality, going nowhere. Fortunate indeed is the person who has not experienced those times in their life—times when they have felt lost and alone. At these times if we can come humbly to God in prayer, we will discover God has been there all along, just waiting to claim us once more as God’s own.  

 

 

From Archbishop Bernard A. Hebda

In the aftermath of Tuesday’s horrific shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, the Catholic bishops of Minnesota have asked Governor Walz and legislative leaders from both parties to call for a special session to pass Safe Schools legislation that stalled during the recently-ended 2022 Session. When we Catholic bishops met with lawmakers and the governor earlier this year, we were told there was bipartisan support for a legislative proposal on this topic: H.F. 4005/S.F. 3380. Although no legislation can stop the manifestation of evil, this Safe Schools legislation is an important, common-sense first step to establishing an ongoing funding source for schools to increase security staff, enhance building security, and strengthen violence prevention programs and mental health initiatives.   

Passing this legislation now will allow public and non-public schools to take time this summer break to evaluate security measures and services to keep our kids safe and then begin the implementation process. If anything, the $44 per student funding allocation in the bill is too modest, and should be a starting point to ensure school security measures are adequately funded. Please contact Governor Walz and House and Senate leadership to call for special session for this Safe Schools legislation.  

At the same time, please join me in seeking the intercession of Mary, who is both Our Lady of Sorrows and Queen of Peace, as we pray not only for the innocent children and school staff who were murdered Tuesday but also for peace for their families and their community. 

 

Wherever you are on this Memorial Day weekend, we welcome you!

The Basilica's weekend liturgies celebrating the Ascension of the Lord are on Saturday at 5pm and Sunday at 7:30am, 9:30am (livestreamed at https://mary.online.church/ or on Facebook @BasilicaMpls), 11:30am and 5pm.
 
On Monday we have one Mass at 10am, both in-person and livestreamed at https://mary.online.church/ or on Facebook @BasilicaMpls.
 
Our offices are closed on Monday, May 30, in observance of Memorial Day.
 
 

In the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the Ascension of the Lord is perpetually transferred to the following Sunday. Therefore, Thursday, May 26, is not a Holy Day of Obligation. The Ascension of the Lord is celebrated on Sunday, May 29, with a Mass of Anticipation on Saturday, May 28.

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