Here we are, back in Ordinary Time. The color green once again graces our sanctuaries, and the rhythm of our ministerial calendars seems to slacken a bit (unless, of course, you include weddings). The very inclusion of the word “ordinary” is misleading. The season is anything BUT ordinary, filled with parables and miracles. And, let’s not forget, there is nothing ordinary about the Eucharist - every celebration is remarkable, every celebration is transformational.
On a practical level, it is us who put the “ordinary” in Ordinary Time. Following marathon celebrations of the Lenten, Triduum, and Easter seasons and First Communions, Confirmations, and Ordinations we often tone down our celebrations. Coinciding with the arrival of summer, we pare down our music and liturgical ministries to accommodate vacations and travel. Now, these are understandable adjustments. But, often, the change in our practices during Ordinary Time can result in missed opportunities or self-fulfilling prophecies. Sometimes, it seems, we forget that “ordinary” is not exclusive of “transformation”.
Today, we’ll hear from Msgr. Ray East. Recorded at the twenty-fifth NPM national convention in 2001, Fr. Ray speaks about the transformative nature of the liturgy. With his customary spirit-filled preaching, Fr. Ray reminds us how our ordinary, day-to-day work as pastoral ministers has the power to transform our communities, ourselves, and our world.
For more information about Msgr. Ray East and his work, read the following articles: on African American Catholic spirituality; on Race and Religion; on the call to remember the poor. You can also watch Fr. Ray's keynote address given at the 2017 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress.
Visit NPM's digital resource library, referenced at the end of the episode.
To join us this summer at the national convention in Baltimore, Maryland, visit the 2018 NPM convention website.
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