A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

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Location: Virginia, United States

Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The Joy of Pentecost: St. Benedict Parish

Happy Pentecost to everyone! It's certainly a happy one for me, as it's not every day that I get to attend an extraordinarily beautiful Holy Mass.

The parish that a friend and I attended this morning is called St. Benedict Catholic Church, and it is without a doubt the best thing about the town of Richmond, Virginia. This parish has the benefit of being both warm and welcoming and having a beautiful, reverent liturgy. In an age in which most Catholic parishes try to bring you as "down to earth" as possible with the style of liturgy, the liturgy at St. Benedict's made my thoughts transcend to a higher level. With the help of the lovely choir, the entire congregation chanted all of the Latin plainchants, including the Veni Creator Spiritus. Moreover, the wonderful pastor, Fr. James Kauffmann, gave a wonderful homily in which he explained how Catholicism forces us to celebrate Christ's presence in the here and now. He also noted how, despite the diverse backgrounds of the parishioners, they are all united by a common language- Latin.

At the end of mass, I was overjoyed to discover that the church has a beautiful side altar to one of my favorite Saints- Saint Scholastica!

Please look at the St. Benedict website here- I just pray that God will lead me to a wonderful parish like this in CT.


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