Here is what happens when we have fewer and fewer priests doing what was, at one time, done by many more hands. Around this time of year, St. Paul, St. Francis and St. Sebastian have their feast days. The priests from these parishes generally get to gather for dinner at this time. This is becoming more difficult every year. This year was ridiculous to the point of humor. It was obvious that we all wanted to be together (considering the great lengths through which we went to do so) but still . . .
We knew one of the priests had an evening Mass so we were going to eat as close to 5:00 as possible. The only problem was, St. Sebastian had confessions until 5PM.
So everybody was notified. "If confessions run long," which of course they did - for which I am always grateful, "please let yourself in and make yourself at home. We will eat as soon as we are finished." (Marcy: Do you like the way I worded that?) The secretary was to turn on the stove at a certain time so everything would be done exactly when we needed it . . .
No fear! We can just eat quickly. Time was running out so we started without Father. Half way through the soup he came running in and sat down to a warm bowl.
Then one of the priests announced:
At one point, between courses, it was just me and Fr. Simone.
So we did! We used the old, fine settings from the 1930's and so, of course, everything had to be hand washed. I was not looking forward to staying up late or facing the tower of dishes and silver the next day and now we didn't have to! Eventually, almost everyone returned and as we waited for the last person to show for dessert . . .
All for the glory of God . . .