I’m here with about 250 others from around the US and beyond for the annual meeting of the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions. Today and tomorrow are study days with Msgr. Kevin Irwin and Rev. Paul Turner. I’ll be live-tweeting highlights from the presentations until my laptop battery lasts.
I’ll write more about what has been happening here as the delegates focus on the Roman Missal implementation. But just a brief note about where we are. Alexandria is in north-central Louisiana; very rural; built around an army base (Fort Polk). Driving around the city, it’s hard not to notice how much the recession has affected this area. Businesses are boarded up and shut down, and you see very few people walking about downtown. It’s certainly bare-bones in terms of material resources here at both the conference and the locale.
But this gathering and this place is absolutely rich in hospitality and care by the local hosts and community. Every participant and speaker was welcomed at the airport and chauffeured by volunteers to the hotel. The mayor of Louisiana (a Catholic) greeted us warmly at our opening session and gave a brief reflection on the city’s 100th anniversary and how this gathering is now part of that year-long celebration. Last night the local hosts cooked and served a home-made meal of Cajun, Creole, and Southern fare…and each of us was given a binder with all the recipes! The priest who led us in last night’s Evening Prayer exchanged his cope for an apron and got to work in the kitchen. We have certainly been cared for richly here, a testament to abundance in the midst of scarcity.
Msgr. Kevin is currently going over The Leeds Group DVD resource, Become One Body One Spirit in Christ. Very interesting. More to come…
Diana – look forward to more feedback on the proceedings. Had dinner Sunday nite with Paul Inwood who did a NPM workshop at the University of Dallas and also worked with my daughter’s catholic high school choir on some of his own compositions that the choir sang on Sunday. He is in attendance and will then be heading to OCP in Portland to do some recordings. My almost 18 year old daughter was captivated by him especially when he shared his composer’s insights, tone, mood in terms of singing one of his songs. She realized that it changed how you heard and experienced the hymn.
Diana — Thanks for the tweets.
Bill — Thanks for the kind words. It was good to meet you!