Historic St. Anthony Catholic Church
258 Ohio, Wichita, Ks
2nd St. & Ohio
Two blocks east of Old Town
Sunday Mass at 1:oo
English/Latin missals provided. Join us for coffee and donuts after mass downstairs in the St. Clair/Sunshine room, south exterior basement entrance.
Pastor of St. Anthony Parish: Fr. Ben Nguyen
EFLR Celebrants: Fr. John Jirak, Fr Nicholas Voelker
Master of Ceremonies: Tony Strunk
Choir Director: Bernie Dette

Continuing News

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Did You Know

Mass Propers, the readings that change everyday, can be found in the red missalettes at the entrance of church?

Fr. Nicholas Voelker celebrates Low Mass Saturdays at 8:00 a.m., St. Mary's Catholic Church, 106 East 8th street, Newton. There is no mass this Saturday, January 30, 2016.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Post #40

Topics: Congregation for Divine Worship; Vernacular Masses But with Latin Consecration?....Learning About Mass, The Asperges....911 Dispatcher Earns Distinction....Random Thoughts Human Fragility and Light Bulbs in St. Anthony’s Attic.

Congregation for Divine Worship
Vernacular Masses But with Latin Consecration?
as reported by http://wdtprs.com/blog/
Slavishly accurate liturgical translations & frank commentary on Catholic issues - by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf)

The Rite of Mass could change. According to some leaks, Benedict XVI has give the Congregation for Divine Worship the task of studying some modifications in the liturgy. In particular, it is said the Pope intends to reinstate the Latin for the formula of the Eucharistic consecration in Mass in the vernacular, i.e., the one celebrated in different national languages. [This means that in Masses in English, Italian etc., when the priest would get to the two fold consecration, he would switch to LATIN.] The same thing could happen for the [sacramental] formulas of baptism, confirmation, confession and the other sacraments. In addition the sign of peace among the faithful during Mass, which today takes place before the distribution of the Eucharist, could be moved forward (as in the Ambrosian rite) to the offertory in order so as not to disturb the recollection before Communion.

These modifications would be joined to the changes to the liturgy and sacred vestments which the Pope, together with his Master of Ceremonies, Msgr. Guido Marini, has accomplished in these last few months, in order to recover ancient traditions: the restoration of the Crucifix at the center of the altar, the distribution of Communion to the faithful on the tongue while kneeling, [though non of these things are changes to the liturgy as such, they are changes in practice] the retrieval of the pastoral staff of Pius IX (the ferula), the alteration of the shape of pallium (the strip of white wool with red crosses worn by the Pope), the restoration of the papal throne used in a consistory and the celebration of Mass with the back to the assembly, as happened in January in the Sistine Chapel.

Learning About Mass
The Asperges

Thou shalt sprinkle me, O Lord, with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed…

Immediately before Sunday High Mass, the priest, wearing his cope (see Post # 38 Priests Vestments; Is That a Maniple or a Chasuble?) intones the Asperges. This is the sprinkling of the congregation with holy water as the priest walks amongst the people.

The name comes from Psalm 51 which is sung during the Traditional form of the Latin rite, except from Easter to Whitsunday (Paschaltide) in which the Vidi Aquam is intoned. We beg God's mercy (or, during Paschaltide, we praise His mercy) and ask Him to send our church's Guardian Angel to protect us (every church has its own guardian angel).

The priest, accompanied by two servers, one holding the bucket of holy water, both holding his cope sleeve, move down the isle as the priest sprinkles with the aspergium (see picture).
As the choir sings “Glory be to the Father, and to the Son….” You will see the trio stop in their tracks and bow reverently before continuing.

Holy water is a sacramental, the devout use of which is able to remit venial sins. Hyssop is a tufted plant which the Jews used for ritual sprinkling.

And here it is in its entirety:

Thou shalt sprinkle me, O Lord, with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed; Thou shalt wash me, and I shall become whiter than snow.
(…the rite continues)
Have mercy on me, O God, according to Thy great mercy.

Glory be to Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost.
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen

Thou shalt sprinkle me, O Lord, with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed; Thou shalt wash me, and I shall become whiter than snow.

Priest: Show us, O Lord, thy mercy.
Server: And grant us thy salvation
Priest: O Lord, hear my prayer.
Server: And let my cry come unto Thee.
Priest: The Lord be with you.

Server: And with thy spirit.
Priest: Let us pray.
Priest: Hear us, O holy Lord, Almighty Father ,ever-lasting God, and vouchsafe to send Thy holy Angel from
heaven, to gu
ard, cherish, protect, visit and defend all that are assembled in this place: Through
Christ our Lord.
Server: Amen

911 Dispatcher Earns Distinction
atin Mass Attendee Named Telecommunicator of the Year

You may not know Brody Flavin but perhaps you've noticed him sitting in the pews at Latin Mass (EFLR). Brody is a young man who hails from Newton and is slated for marriage next month at St. Anthony.
While hoping to become a fireman or policeman Brody has earned distinction as a 911 dispatcher in his assistance in a three county chase by Harvey County law enforcement. Flavin was recognized by the Association of Public Communications Officials as the 2007 Telecommunicator of the Year. Congratulations Brody on your award and your upcoming nuptials.

Random Thoughts
Human Fragility and Light Bulbs in St. Anthony’s Attic

Peppered throughout life are those times when one realizes just how fragile human existence is. For me it was in the attic of St. Anthony Catholic church as I observed the Thompson brothers change the light bulbs in the ceiling above the sanctuary (most will remember the Thompson brothers as servers at Latin Mass).

Bob Wells, life long parishioner and sacristan asked that I go up with the brothers to learn how to change the bulbs. You see, there is no fancy pole with a grabber thing on the end, no safe enclosed lift to take us up…the bulbs have to be accessed from above and this is a little more complicated then one might imagine.

The journey to near certain death began intriguingly enough through the left side of the sacristy (NE corner of the church). There in the small room off of the altar is a small narrow staircase of old wood that abruptly turns as it goes upward. Once above you enter into a second story room, perhaps 13 by 10 feet with planked floors and dusty storage. But what’s this? There in the corner is a foreboding figure of darkness and gloom. It is what I can only describe as, The Ladder of Death! (or extreme hurt anyway).

This ladder is as old as the church. Now, I am prone to sensationalism, but I believe this ladder extends at least 25 feet upward into a square opening in the ceiling. It‘s rungs are (very) thin wooden dowels, my thought being that men in 1904 were smaller in stature all around. Its only anchor to anything resembling solid is at the top. It proves to be one of those special, fun ladders that bounce and shake precariously as you climb it…which normally I might find amusing, but the thought of a broken leg kind of put a knot in my gut. As I mutter something to this affect Mr. Wells chuckled and said “well it’s better than the original…which is to your left.” At this point, with white knuckles clinging and my stomach pressing through the rungs on the other side (imagine that), I glance over to notice boards nailed to the studs on the wall. Indeed, thank God for THIS ladder.

Once through the hole in the ceiling I find myself on a bit of flooring that I suppose can be described as a third (or fourth) story. It holds the AC units and duct work and forms a squarish U shape around the ceiling above the altar. In the middle of the U shape are the rafters, bare exposed under two feet of sprayed insulation. This is what kind of freaks me out…knowing that one misstep and I fall forty feet down onto the sanctuary floor. Ok, I will admit, that is a bit over the top…most likely I would catch myself in the rafters by my broken neck and swiveling cranium…so that is a small measure of comfort. There is a board laid across this vast sea of certain death (yes, I said a board …the kind you fall off of and meet your Maker...see picture) that inclines towards the rafters of the church and the bell tower. This leads to a catwalk…or more accurately…more boards that extend all the way to the choir loft…I don’t imagine anyone of any sound mind or sense would attempt to use this as you would have to duck below other rafters as you walked. Again, below the insulation lie more rafters and plaster…so this is not a practical or safe walkway and was probably left by the original workman.

Going back to my original starting point are two big windows and a good view of the rear parking lot(look up from the rear parking lot and you can see into the attic). Without gratings on the windows this lends a certain vertigo to the atmosphere. Between these windows are a small series of steps that hug the east wall…these lead to another catwalk that runs parallel above the aforementioned catwalk except this one has railings (see picture) and leads directly into the bell tower. It is much wider and safer, though one of the boys does comment “Oh, by the way…hold on at all times and trust nothing….!”

To change the lights is a two (or three) man operation. One man is on firm ground below to actually switch out the bulbs…that’s the safe part. The other guy(s) walk out onto the rafters of the ceiling, hidden in insulation, to access the “buckets” that the bulbs sit inside of. The Thompson brothers were absolutely fearless as they stepped onto the rafters, lean over and go straight to work.


  1. Grab the “bucket” securely (connected by a chain to heavy beams). The buckets are fastened to a cross board by a long bolt and wing nut. This is the apparatus that keeps it from falling though the ceiling.
  2. Unscrew the wing nut and hold the bucket tightly
  3. Remove the cross board.
  4. Very gently, commences to lower the bucket downward to the man waiting below, being very careful to not let the chain swing as this acts just like a saw in the fragile plaster ceiling.
  5. Man below changes bulb.
  6. Unit is pulled back up and secured.
  7. Mutter prayer of thanks for another chance at life.

Once the work was done we explored a bit. Here and there is graffiti from workmen gone passed…a date scrawled in paint from 1932, scribblings, and markings. Once on the catwalk you can see just how solid the building is with huge timbers and iron “hangers” down the middle (see picture). Off to the sides are mini catwalks that extend to the small roundish windows in the roof. You can see these from street level, though I cannot imagine what purpose the little windows serve, save the small amount of light they let in. These old catwalks, extending laterally over the pews below, look unsteady and I don’t imagine anyone has ventured out onto them in years (you can see these in the foreground in the picture above right).

Once down the catwalk you step up into the bell tower which is flooded in light. This is probably the most vulnerable part of the church as the pigeons can attest . There are multiple levels of the tower with another wobbly ladder that leads higher to the actual bell. I am too chicken to climb since I am worried about the small patches of dry rot in the floor (old water damage) but over all, as a testament to old school construction, the tower looks pretty good especially considering the fact that there is not a steel beam in the whole thing.

The Thompson brothers, or as I think of them: the Fearless Thompsons, clamber up and take pictures of the bell (see…picture of the bell).

We make our way back across the catwalk and I clawed my way down the Ladder of Death to terra firma. The look on my face elicits a chuckle from Mr. Wells.

Hysterics aside I really was in no danger, though by cowering in the corner with my hands over my eyes I could have fooled most anyone. It was the idea that forty feet below me, hidden by a few inches of plaster and insulation, lay much pain should one fall through.

If you use common sense, as in any attic, there is no more danger than say, falling off a roof…wait a minute…I hate roofs!

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