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Mass in Olds, Alberta, Canda at St. Stephen’s

St. Stephen's, Olds, Alberta, CanadaI recently returned from a 9 day trip to back to back conferences in Calgary and Olds, Alberta, Canada. The first one was primarily in Olds at the university there. So, I have added to my collection of churches I have been blessed to visit for Mass. This one is St. Stephen’s. I got a cab ride to Mass and found one of the attendees at the conference there at the end of Mass. We shared a ride back to the conference venue. I wish we could have had more attending but I am so glad for that opportunity. I couldn’t go to daily Mass but was able to do so for Sunday vigil Mass.

Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral

Buenos Aires Metropolitan CathedralThe Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral is where Pope Francis served before becoming our new pope. Cindy and I got to visit and attend Mass during a business trip last week for a conference that was held nearby.

We learned that the patroness of Argentina is Our Lady of Luján and found a small statute that we brought back. The Cathedral also houses the remains of General José de San Martín, a famous revolutionary leader.

I am constantly amazed at the opportunities we’ve had to attend Mass all over the world. This is definitely a highlight because of the connection to Pope Francis.

Churches In Utrecht, Netherlands

As I have often found to be the case, my guardian angel led me to Mass today. Usually when I’m in a place I don’t know and I’m about to give up finding a church, it’s then that I suddenly come across it.

Today that’s in Utrecht, Netherlands where I’m attending a dairy conference that starts tomorrow. I had some free time before my first dinner this evening so I got some very approximate directions to a church. It turned out to be St. Augustine’s and I arrived while Mass was in progress which started at 12:30pm.

As I was leaving I met one of the priests who celebrated Mass. He pointed me toward the St. Catherine’s Cathedral which proved to be a really nice walk along the riverwalk that goes through town. I first stopped at St. Martin’s Cathedral (or Dom Church) thinking I was there but it turned out to be the original Catholic cathedral which was taken over by protestants.

I like to find a statue or image of our Blessed Mother in each country I visit so I was looking for a gift shop. At St. Catherine’s I was directed back to St. Martin’s where they have a nice little shop. Interestingly, since it is now protestant they had quite a few images and statues of Mary and I purchased one. They also sell rosaries and holy water founts. I guess they get a lot of Catholic visitors.

So, it has been another interesting day and another opportunity to visit our Lord in His Blessed Sacrament!

Cindy adds: Reminds me of a Dan Fogelberg song “Netherlands”

Off in the Netherlands
I heard a sound
Like the beating of heavenly wings
And deep in my brain
I can hear a refrain
Of my soul as she rises and sings
Anthems to glory and
Anthems to love and
Hymns filled with early delight
Like the songs that the darkness
Composes to worship the light.

Audio Bible Ambassadors

Audio Bibles is a very interesting concept and something being produced by Faith Comes By Hearing. They’re recording the New Testament in many languages and versions since they are an interdenominational organization. A big area for distribution has been Catholic Bibles in Latin America where groups are being formed to listen to the Bible.

The parishes listening through the New Testament are representative of a movement among the Catholic church in Latin America. During 2009, Audio Bibles in seven different languages proclaimed God’s Word in 10 Latin American countries. Demand is so great that plans are underway to send another 3,600 Audio Bibles this year.

“Right now, I am having to hold my hand on the faucet,” said Phil Kenney, the ministry’s manager for the Americas region. “We need a new supply of resources to meet the increasing demand.” He expects the number of Audio Bible listening groups to double by 2012.

The Audio Bibles have been well received. A Guatemalan priest said, “I’ve used Audio Bibles both at the parish and diocese level. People show interest, paying close attention. Above all, the children in the biblical catechism classes concentrate much more on the message. The congregation is motivated and shares what they have heard with their brothers.”