Before I talk about St. Ann’s, I want to give special thanks to Father Rick from St. Benedict the Moor. I emailed him last week, letting him know that I wrote about the Mass he gave, and he responded by asking me for my address and sending me a book on the history of the Washington Archdiocese. It’s a beautiful book, with a lot of information about the growth of the archdiocese over the beginning with the arrival of Catholic settlers in Maryland in the seventeenth century. I’m going to try to incorporate some of the more relevant information into my posts. Thanks again, Father Rick. Also, thanks to RAnn for inviting me to the Sunday Snippets- Catholic Carnival Group.
For those of you who haven’t cracked open a newspaper, D.C. got pounded with about 20 inches of snow over the past two days, and it has been a blast. I’ve been enjoying the snow quite a bit. Yesterday, I went to the snowball fight in Dupont Circle, slid down the steps near the Lincoln Memorial on a garbage bag, and walked all the way to the Capitol. I’ve been, as one friend puts it, “D.C. Chillin.” However, because of the snow, the Metro is running at limited capacity. Most of the Red Line was still up, though, so I still had access to the northwestern area of the city. I decided to balance my map out a little bit and go with Loreto to St. Ann’s in the Tenleytown area.
According to Father Rick’s history book, St. Ann’s parish was one of three formed during the Civil War in order to accommodate the needs of the soldiers, freed slaves, and others who flocked to the city during the war years. It is a pretty imposing structure on first glance, with much of the same pseudo-Gothic structure that is featured in many D.C. churches. The interior features beautiful stained glass windows, high arched ceilings, and a massive amount of stone. This church, more than any other, made me feel like I was inside a medieval castle.
I really don’t have a lot to say about the Mass. It was probably because of the snow, but there just didn’t seem to be a lot of energy in the church today. There was no music whatsoever, and it seemed like everyone was just going through the motions. Today’s Gospel reading was one of my favorites, when Jesus calls on Peter to become a “fisher of men.” I was totally shocked when the priest didn’t even give a homily! I’ve seen long homilies and short homilies, but never have I seen a priest not give one! In total, the Mass was about twenty-five minutes long, and it kind of felt like “Mass Lite.”
I understand that the weather may have thrown everyone off a little, but Mass today felt a little unfulfilling. Maybe I’ll give St. Ann another chance some day, but this morning it left me feeling as cold as the icy streets.
St. Ann Website
Snowball Fight in Dupont Circle (Saturday Afternoon)
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