Sunday, June 14, 2009


So privileged I was to attend the Golden Jubilee Mass for Fr. James Moore, SJ this afternoon at the cathedral-like St. Matthias Church in Bala Cynwyd. I'm happy to report I had plenty of company as well.

Fr. Moore has been a Jesuit longer than I've been alive... serving God faithfully at St. Joseph's Preparatory School and St. Joseph's College/University for half a century!

My words won't accurately express how moving the Mass was, concelebrated by 15 priests and sung so angelically by cantor Pamela Haney and the St. Matthias Parish Choir - so I'll let the pictures do the talking. It was fun to attend a Mass when everyone knew when to sit, stand, and kneel ;-), and to hear 250 voices sing the St. Louis Jesuits' "Here I am Lord", as it was a faith renewing moment for me.

Congratulations as well for Fr. Moore's nieces and nephews; Barbara Morrison, Jane Papszycki, Mary Lou Schneider, Donald Moore, James Moore, and Joseph Moore. You put in a great deal of work to honor your uncle.

Fr. Moore - enjoy the summer without us, et ad multos annos!

Lift High the Cross... altar servers Joseph Leonard,
Theresa Castellucci, and Elizabeth Martin

Bruce Bidinger, SJ, deftly swings the thurible, as Tom
Prior and Dennis Sheehan sing their hearts out ;-)

As the man of honor Fr. Moore was last in the long procession.

Fr. Moore and Deacon Zurbach use incense to bless the altar.

"I will take the cup of life, and call God's name all my days."

Concelebrating with Monsignor Rodgers and Vincent Genovesi, SJ
How I wish every Sunday Mass was just like this one!

Mass has ended, go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.

AD Don DiJulia with 44 / SJU professors Thomas Brennan, SJ and Dennis McNally, SJ

The Moore nephews hanging out back.

Fran and Russ Strollo / The Prendergasts

Understandable that Fr. Moore was emotional when it came time at Mass to remember those who have gone before us, particularly his mom, dad and brothers. At the reception he told the story about when his parents dropped him off at the Jesuit Novitiate at Wernersville: As he said good-bye he told them that if "I ever became unhappy with my vocation I would leave and come home - I never went home."

I was hesitant to include this picture...
Possible 'Men of the Spiritual Exercises' Calendar?
The line was long to talk to Fr. Moore -- but my SE brothers butted ahead to get our picture taken with our spiritual director and the man of the day (people were so nice, commenting that we must have been family). Hesitant, as I said, because these 8 good looking fellows are visual snacks, and no doubt this eye candy picture will be the desktop background on many of the ladies' computers come tomorrow;-) Pictured from top: Steve Klarich, John Sigmund, Joe Ruggieri, Rich Brennan, Tom Prior, Phil Press, Jim Moore, SJ and Thomas 'Quietas', aka 44.

Six Degrees of Joe Ruggieri?

Even when you've never met someone on Hawk Hill, they might know you none the less.
I was standing in line with Joe Ruggieri when a Mrs. Conti came up to him and asked if he went to St. Joe's, as she had worked there for 54 years and was now in her 90th year. He said no, but he went to the Prep. Then she smiled and said he must be related to George Ruggieri, SJ, who taught there many years ago. Ouch... while there may be some family resemblance... nothing gets past that lady ;-)

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