Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity took a recent road trip to St. Katharine, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin for the noon Spanish Mass. Even before seeing the church, we knew we would feel at home here. Why? Because of our own appreciation for history and tradition, it is so meaningful to walk into a 120 year old building. This is holy ground. Our hearts felt at one with the people of the past, present and future in this space.
Before the liturgy began, we were able to visit the beautiful Eucharistic Chapel. The tabernacle is located in the wall between the sanctuary and the Eucharistic chapel itself. Jesus’s Eucharistic presence is truly present from either side. The steps leading to the tabernacle on the chapel side are a good reminder of God being found in mountain top experiences. Mount Laverna for St. Francis and Mount Tabor for Jesus jogged our memory in this special space as we knelt aware of the heights of God’s majesty taking in the scene.
The stained glass windows in the body of the church were exquisite. We commented that we had not seen the imagery of Adam and Eve walking out of Paradise anywhere else before. How thoughtful that the Nativity window was directly across from this depiction. Our Lady of Guadalupe is given primary placement near the sanctuary in fitting fashion for this gathering.
We felt very welcome. Father took time to talk to us before Mass and mentioned our Community name to the congregation. The congregation was prayerful and the choir sang with energy and devotion. It was moving to have the baptismal font front and center and to be gathered around it for the Eucharist. It was a beautiful reminder of our roots in the faith.
Another treat on the way home was a stop at The Little Farmer just outside of Fond du Lac. Many families were enjoying a Carmel Apple Festival on the Fall day. We did, too.