WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - St. Therese Little Flower Parish is an amazing parish in the Blue Hills area of urban Kansas City, MO. Founded in 1925, the same year their patron saint was canonized, its stone edifice symbolized a sense of permanence in the neighborhood that has endured a great deal of change.
When I lived in the KC area, I remember driving by this building many times, impressed by the strength and simplicity of the architecture. On one particular occasion, I was even more impacted by the smiling faces of the people I saw leaving after Mass. It was a lasting image. The congregation is culturally diverse and I remembered thinking about the old lyric - "red and yellow, black and white; they are precious in His sight."
St. Therese parish describes themselves as a small Roman Catholic Church with a big heart. "We are a very faith-filled, diverse, spirit-led community that is small enough to be a very intimate and close knit family, yet large enough to accomplish the task of serving our brothers and sisters in the community who are less fortunate than we are."
The parish does more than just talk about diversity; they live it. Their 9:15am service, for example, has its roots in an African-American spirituality, filled with exuberance, excitement and some gospel music. Then, at 11:15am, they offer an Anglican Use Mass using the Book of Divine Worship, an approved Roman Rite adapted from the Anglican Book of Common Prayer.
The current pastoral administrator of the parish is Father Ernie Davis, a former Episcopal priest who converted and entered the Catholic priesthood through the Pastoral Provision in 2002. His background in Anglicanism forms the basis for the rest of the story...
Read the rest of Randy Sly's article at Catholic Online.
And be sure to see the first article in his series, on Our Lady of the Atonement in San Antonio.
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