Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Birthday of Your parish in Rome

Just as you enter this church building, so God wishes to enter into your soul, for he promised: I shall live in them, and I shall walk the corridors of their hearts. (Office of Readings, feast of the dedication of St. John Lateran.)

Most parish churches, if they celebrate their dedications at all, usually celebrate them on the feast of the saint or event for which the Church is named. But the basilicas of Rome get their own feastdays, and that of St. John Lateran is not just a memorial, but a feast or Obligatory memorial. (use the propers for the feast with the common of the dedication of a church today.) The reason for this honor is that the Lateran basilica is the oldest Roman basilica, and is the Pope's parish church. (Surprise! you thought that was  St. Peter's.) And since the Pope is our universal pastor, that makes the Lateran the parish church  of all Catholics. 

Try this amazing virtual tour of St. John Lateran:
and as you walk its virtual corridors, think about the quote from today's liturgy. Does God delight to walk in the corridors of my heart? What a mind-boggling idea.