17 January 2011

Holy Name Church

Today, I went to church with my good friends, John and Loreto. In honor of our friend Kate, who moved back to Illinois from D.C. last month, I decided we should visit Holy Name, a church she told me about a while back. Holy Name is in Northeast Washington, near Gallaudet University, where Kate was attending school.

The church building wasn’t overwhelming. The red, rectangular-shaped building looked more like a barn than a Catholic Church. Outside is a beautiful statue of the Virgin Mary welcoming people into the building. The worship space is actually on the second floor of the building, with a parish hall on the first floor. This arrangement looks a little bit funny from the outside: the second story has stained glass windows, while the first floor has no windows at all. The actual worship space was pleasant, with plain white walls and patterned stained glass. It felt a lot like some of the other African-American parishes that I’ve visited, which have sort of a Southern Protestant feel.

The singing duties were performed by a small choir accompanied by the piano. Though certainly not as energetic as the choir at St. Teresa of Avila, this group got me swaying and clapping my hands a few times during Mass. Father Villanueva talked about the phrase “Lamb of God” during his homily today. He said it conjured three familiar images: that of the sacrificial lamb of the Old Covenant, that of the sacrifice of the Passover and the blood of the lamb that was to be smeared on the door of the chosen people, and that of a lamb going peacefully to be slaughtered. Father called on us, like Jesus, to become sacrificial lambs by loving and forgiving without condition.



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  1. Thanks for the article on your blogspot Michael and you're welcome back anytime.

  2. Wow, Michael, what a great project! Where did you get this idea, so creative! Please please please extend your project to all the churches in the Archdiocese of Washington, not just DC. We would love to have you visit some of the churches in our area: St. Jude (my parish), Holy Redeemer in Kensington (where I teach), St. Patrick, St. Francis, St. Mary, St. Elizabeth, St. Catherine, St. Jane de Chantal, etc. I will bookmark your blog and follow your progress! Good luck!

  3. Fr. - You're very welcome, I enjoyed the Mass very much.

    Michard - I would LOVE to visit all the churches in the archdiocese someday! I hear you have some very beautiful churches in the Southern Maryland area. I'm going to finish off DC first, but I'll be sure to make my way up there eventually.

  4. Michael-

    Thank you so much for a blog in memory of me! haha. I miss you guys so much. Wish I could have been there too. I hope you said hello to Gallaudet for me!