Every Tuesday night at 9:00pm, students from Notre Dame, Holy Cross College, and St. Mary's gather together for Mass in the Log Chapel. The "Log Chapel Mass", as it is often referred to, is always well-attended. It is not unusual to see all the seats taken, people sitting on the floor of the center aisle, and people standing in the back.
The men of Old College have the unique responsibility of hosting the Mass and serve as greeters, lectors, cantors, and altar servers. Meanwhile Fr. Steve Lacroix, C.S.C., Rector of Old College, typically celebrates the Mass.
According to the Constitutions of the Congregation of Holy Cross: "We pray with the church, we pray in community and we pray in solitude. Prayer is our faith attending to the Lord, and in that faith we meet Him individually, yet we also stand in the company of others who know God as their Father" (3:23).
As men in formation, Old Collegians certainly spend time praying in community and in solitude. But the Log Chapel Mass serves as a great opportunity for us to pray with the Church – with our friends and peers outside of the community. It is here that we are truly able to "stand in the company of others who know God as their Father."
The Constitutions also emphasize the importance of prayer and worship within a Christian community. In particular, it is through partaking in the Lord's Supper that we are strengthened to carry out God's will for our lives. The Log Chapel Mass serves as a weekly reminder that Christ alone can fortify us on our journey to holiness. Accompanied by our fellow brothers and sisters, we partake in the Eucharist trusting that the Lord will provide us with the strength necessary to continue on our pursuit for holiness.
Following the Mass, everyone is invited to the "Luther Lounge" (the basement of Old College, named for Brother Ed Luther, the long-serving procurator at Old College) for a light social. Hosted and planned by the men of Old College, these socials take on a new theme every week. Most recently, we had a "Fat Tuesday" themed soiree where our guests enjoyed Paczki, or Polish donuts.
Although the theme and refreshments vary weekly, these gatherings are always a great opportunity for Old Collegians and their guests to enjoy one another's company. Although I am only a freshman at Old College, I have quickly come to appreciate the Log Chapel Mass and the graces that it bestows upon our community and those who attend.
Mr. Charlie Skinner is in his first year at Old College Undergraduate Seminary on the campus of Notre Dame. He and his fellow Old Collegians write a post each month for the Spes Unica Blog, sharing on their life and formation in Old College. Learn more about seminary life in Holy Cross, and specifically Old College Undergraduate Seminary. And meet the current Old Collegians who are in formation for priesthood and religious life in Holy Cross.