>Monday of Holy Week: Earthquake in Central Italy

>Last evening after lectoring for the 5:30 pm mass and wearing my voice out with the reading of the Passion Narrative of St. Mark, I had dinner at the rectory with our pastor, celebrant, and two acolytes from the mass. It was a beautiful night for dining al fresco and talking about the upcoming events for Holy Week. The 5:30 is popular among the under-40’s in the parish, of whom we have a rather large number, since they get to sleep in on Sunday morning and still attend a reverently celebrated mass at least partially in Latin; last evening’s was particularly full for Palm Sunday. It is always good to have a priest’s perspective on the preparations for Easter and how they deal with the enormous influx of “Easter lilies” – otherwise absent members of the congregation who only bloom at Eastertide in order to fulfill their Easter duty.

Upon arriving home I read of the terrible earthquake which hit central Italy, and which reports now indicate left at least 40 people dead and 50,000 people homeless. The Italian people have always had the misfortune of living in an earthquake zone. The most recent major quake, as many will recall, was in 1997 when the roof of the Basilica in Assisi collapsed, killing four people inside the church; another nine people died and and 40,000 were left homeless.

Please keep these most recent victims in your prayers and thoughts. We never know when our time in this life will be taken from us, as no one knows the day or hour. The hope that is provided us in the Resurrection of Our Lord at Easter will, God willing, provide some comfort to these poor people.

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