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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Hiatus over; H1N1 update

MY BAD. I took Monday off to recuperate from performing a wedding at the Korean church, then hearing confessions, giving a talk and saying Mass at a junior high retreat at St. Josaphat's Byzantine Catholic retreat house in Glen Cove, N.Y. over the weekend. I have to hand it to the teachers. It was certainly a baptism by fire for us all. A special shout-out to Father Jim Gilligan, our canon lawyer in residence, for taking my two Masses at the church in Queens so I could stay at the retreat center and lose sleep. Thanks a lot, Jim. Really.

This week does promise to give me several topics to address, most notably the Monthly House Meeting (Third Wednesday of every month) which will take up, among other things, suggested H1N1 precautions. My report from the all-important Food Committee will go over like a lead balloon because guys don't want to be told they can't go into the food line when the doors are closed, no matter what the lawyers and insurers say. Nor do they want to be discouraged from squirreling food away for later consumption.

But back to the H1N1: all the dioceses of Pennsylvania and now the diocese of Brooklyn strongly recommend no sharing of the cup and a bow in place of the handshake during the exchange of peace. I suspect these will be implemented easily at the Knoll although some may suggest substituting the liturgically suspect practice of dipping the Host in the Precious Blood. (Apparently nowhere in the Aramaic does it say, "Take and dunk...") I for my part have long shied away from sharing the cup (unless I am celebrant and therefore first) because of the unavoidable backwash. Thirty guys drinking from one cup and you are Number 31. You do the math.

Fathers Fern Goselin and John Hudert are on tap with Food For Thought this Thursday and will speak about, what else? The Pachamama Farm.

Thursday evening several of us will go to the Peekskill Theater to see Lily Tomlin's live performance.

Check back in a few hours and I'll tell you what else is new around the salad bar.

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