The Messina Family

The Messina Family
Barcelona 2010

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Christ the King Sunday Blows in

Today is Christ the King Sunday, the last Sunday of the Church calendar. Next Sunday is the beginning of Advent and the new church year. Every year on Christ the King Sunday, our entire parish gathers for a service together in the Stavanger Domkirke (Stavanger Cathedral). This is a gray stone cathedral that is hundreds of years old. It is at the center of Stavanger Sentrum and is a very well-known Norwegian landmark. The service was at 2 p.m., which is quite late for us. However, it was a chance to see the other members of our St. Svithun's community. Norway is a socialist country and they have the state religion as Evangelical Lutheran (which is just fine by me as I was raised in the Lutheran Church). I became a Catholic 5 years ago and well, there are more Muslims in Norway than there are Catholics. There is one church in all of this area and I think there is only one diocese in the country. St. Svithun's Catholic Church has a large congregation of mostly foreign people. Yes, there are some Norwegian services each Sunday. There are also services in 8 other languages at any given time. Luckily, there is a big enough English-speaking community that we are allowed to worship in English every Sunday. Other language communities are not as fortunate as we are as they only get to meet once or twice a month in their native languages. Today's service was primarily in Norwegian. The homily was printed out in English for us to follow. Most of the singing parts of the Mass were done in Latin (hello....a foreign language to ALL of us). The prayers of the faithful were very moving. Each petition was read from a member of each language community: Norwegian, Tamil, French, Polish, Tagalog, Vietnamese, English, Spanish and German. Our hymns were in all the different languages as well...different verses were printed in different languages. It was really neat. Tim is back and up for action and so far none of the rest of us have caught his nasty bug yet. We attempted to take some family pictures for Christmas cards today on the edge of Hafsfjord, near our house. It had snowed and blowed all day long. It was frigid. We were being blown over and my hair and long dress were blowing everywhere. I thought I was going to end up with a Marilyn Monroe-esque type picture or one of us would get blown into the drink so we called it quits. We warmed up and then sat by the tree inside out of the wind and took some more shots. We'll have to see which ones come out best. We really wanted a true Norwegian background, but we may have to make due with the time crunch of getting photos sent to us here. After dinner tonight we played with the Van de Graff generator. The electric current travels really well through the wooden floor! Here are some pictures of our escapes today. You'll notice she has a "Santa bell" in her hand in the pictures next to the tree. (She loves Polar Express.) She wanted to hear it picture...she had it in her ear! Luckily her ear canals are tiny. Crazy girl! Quip of the day from Lily: Discussion this morning as I was getting her dressed...Joe was in there talking with us both. I was encouraging her to go to the bathroom on the potty so she didn't have to wear diapers anymore. Mom: Do you think Joe wears diapers? Lily: No, Silly!!! Joe-Joe wears big girl panties! At this point Joe almost wet his pants, he was laughing so hard. It actually made him blush. :o)

No comments: