Giáo Hội Hoàn Vũ / The Universal Church

Last Sunday I traveled from Tulsa to Oklahoma City to spend some time with my good friend Lisa Hendey.  Lisa had the day free after speaking at a conference the day before.

The most amazing part of the day was Sunday Mass at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cathedral.  The photos above don’t really do it justice.  A Romanesque-style church, it has a wonderful open and airy feeling to it, which only added to the atmosphere of this particular Mass.  The stained glass windows are fantastic too, each related to the life of Our Lady.  Here’s a link to the parish website that explains the windows.  Go look and come back, I’ll wait…..

The 11:45 am Mass each Sunday is for the Vietnamese community in OKC.  Even though neither Lisa or I know a single word of Vietnamese, we chose this Mass to experience their culture, and we were certainly rewarded.

I always enjoy attending Mass in other countries and in other languages.  It’s a great reminder of how universal the Church really is and how the work of Catholic missionaries has spread the faith all corners of the world.

The Mass is always a comfort in those situations because the lack of a common language doesn’t mean that I cannot pray along and participate fully in the Mass.  It takes a little more concentration, but in some ways it encourages a deeper participation.

The people we met there couldn’t have been nicer.  The choir and the music were unlike anything I’ve heard before, wonderfully spiritual but also somehow imbued with the longing of a lost homeland.

It was a wonderful experience.  I really hope to go again.  I should look up Tulsa’s Vietnamese Community too.

(I used Google Translate for the title of the post.  I hope it says “The Universal Church” in Vietnamese.  If it doesn’t, I wonder how you say “oops”.)