ACTS 1, 1-11; MK. 16, 14-20.
THEN he said to them, "Go into the whole world, and proclaim the good news to the whole of creation . . . Then, after speaking to them, the Lord Jesus was taken up into heaven, and took h is seat at God's right hand. But they went forth and preached everywhere."
The Greek word commonly translated "gospel" means "good news." Is the gospel of Jesus Christ really that? It is nearly twenty years ago now that two French priests wrote a book called The Parish a Missionary Community. In it they said that you had to be an incurable optimist to hear "good news" in our parishes at the Sunday Masses. It is more realistic to call it stale news, they said, dated, "old stuff." You get the idea that every- thing about it is stereotyped, dull, has been trotted out hundreds and hundreds of times; has been endlessly repeated, endlessly listened to, endlessly ignored.
What record did they play in your parish? In Red Bank we always prayed for the sick, "at home or in the various hospitals," and our C.D.A. was named court Isabella, No. 999. I was never attracted to it, somehow.
There is something that ten thousand Catholic churches have in common, and that is that they all smell alike inside. They may