Tuesday, 11 December 2012

To Trinate?

Fr Rowe crushing someone's head
There is lot's of talk about the number of Masses that a Priest can or should say. Usually by armchair theologians (in which I include Priests and Bishops!)

I remember when I was a parish Priest being quite bullish about this. I had a vigil, eight, ten, eleven thirty, six in the evening and once a month a signed Mass for the deaf. I have to say that they were all needed more or less. I could have crammed them into a fewer number, but I could never really get out of mind the thought that if one of my parishioners had managed to get to Mass, having perhaps just finished a shift at the fish packing factory, then it was a pretty rum deal if I said that I was too tired to 'do' another Mass. Even less with the bizarre pseudo-theological 'fracturing the community' nonsense.

So, being a little run down, with the beginnings of "Priest Flu" (much, much more dangerous and worrying than simple "man flu") and waiting for my bed - last evening I was presented ofter supper with one of my newly returned charges coming to me and saying "Father I have not been to Mass today - can you say one for me?"

Well, I'd already said two, so I could have said "it's not really right for a Priest to say more than two Masses on a day". Or I could have said "well, I could not really just say Mass for you now could I?"

But if I have a 13 year old boy who comes to me because he has not been able to go to Mass on a Sunday with a request that I say Mass and he can attend it, then surely the question answers itself.

Of course I trinated.
Or course I said Mass for one boy.
Of course I waited the hour until the fast was over.

And of course it was the right thing to do. Sometimes these armchair theologians should try being a chaplain abroad.
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