SOMEONE HAS GIVEN me a beautiful gift. It’s a big, thick book with color images of a Catholic parish I used to belong to as a child. This book traces the history of the parish going back more than 120 years.
The image on the right hand side was taken in the sacristy where I used to put on my cassock and surplice to serve Mass. Once, when I was acting as M.C. for Fr. Joseph Bisig, FSSP, I asked him if we could pray the Angelus (since it was noon). He replied, “That’s fine, but I know it in Latin only.” Boy, was I glad I had it memorized in Latin! (This may seem insignificant, but these things meant a lot to a small boy!)
ONE THING STRIKES ME again and again as I look through this book. In the days before the Second Vatican Council, the priestly vestments used to be so beautiful. Even in the days when the parish had absolutely no money — not a cent! — the priests always wore edifying vestments. Then, following the Council, it seems like folks made a conscious decision to wear only ugly vestments (the ones that look like cheap bed sheets). Has anyone else noticed this?