I thought it would be really weird to go a new Mass in Chinese after two years Latin Mass on Sunday, but mass is mass, no matter what language it is in, no matter which priest offers it. It is a mass where we meet Jesus.
In Shanghai, there is a priest who listened to my first confession, witnessed my baptism and I was a lector for his mass for very long time at Cathedral. We have known each other for over 10 years since I was 14. he told me ( again today…) that I have not changed at all ( really???)…er….
He definitely meets the expression that ” the stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.” He is always assigned to some funny places. It always took me more than half hour to find his little parish under cover of a lot of old houses in some small old rural neighborhood..This time is the same situation.
Driving in Shanghai is like playing video game. You never know how mang lines are there are the road. If there is a space, there are cars. Traffic rules are always optional. I am glad that I left an hour earlier ( though it is supposed only half hour driving), and I arrived just one time. He walked out of confession station and prepared for mass. I wore chapel veil, and nobody really asked questions or distracted by me. That’s great.
The music was really “unbearable” compared with the music at SFdS. I told myself again and again.. do not judge, do not judge.. but Lord, I cannot stop judging. The music is just too “protestan”..That’s fine. Although the music they pick for before Mass, communion and after mass were kind of “protestan”, but mass musics themselves never change. They are same melody for “Lord have mercy”, ” Gloria” .. forever. and I have admit , if there is something called “localization”.. these kinds of music for mass should be good examples for localization, compared with these new and protestan style songs..
I tried not to be distracted by the music…Mass itself was very beautiful. Father’s homily really surprised me in many ways. I was surprised/moved by how much grace God has given him. When I was little, I liked his homily very much. He was the few priests who wrote down what he needed to say. His homily is really authentic and orthodox. He told us today, that all our life will eventually go to an end, if without Jesus to stop us from death, we will just die without hope. Jesus is our life and hope.. ( a really beautiful homily…)
After mass, we had lunch at parish. The cook at parish really makes delicious food, since there are some other visitors, the cook cooked tons of food. Since it is in a kind of remote/ rural area, we had chances to have home-grow/made vegetables which were really fresh and tasty.. Vegetable, which I have not had for almost two years.
After lunch, I tried to stayed in the chapel for an hour…
Right before I left, Father chatted with me about prayers. It surprised me again that he said same things as what my spiritual director said….er.. Lord, what a great work you have done to us? This makes me believe that reason, knowledge and education could assist people understand God, However, the most importantly tool to get closer to God is not books or arguments, but PRAYER.. pure prayer, spending time with God.
Dear my friends, please keep him in your prayer.. Fr. Francis Lee..