On Friday I was privileged to attend the Albert Cardinal Meyer Lecture series featuring NT Wright on “Sacramental Theology” given at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois. This was a one of a kind experience, and I would be surprised if I ever chanced to visit this seminary for Roman Catholic priests again in my lifetime. It was a fair bit of culture shock to my revivalist protestant sensibilities, and yet I cannot speak ill of the great hospitality we experienced. At one point my friends and I were looking for the library and a friendly man offered to take us right to it. As we got to talking, he introduced himself and it turned out he was an alumnus of the seminary, a priest for years in my neighborhood. He answered questions about the Catholic Worker house history there, and then proceeded to give me a guided walking tour of the library and chapel with all the details only an alumnus and caring student could provide! Wow. If that wasn’t a God moment!
The two part lecture was excellent. I took four and a half pages of hand-written notes. I will post pics of them here if you promise not to laugh at my handwriting and mispellings! One of the most memorable things about the lectures was the organ recitals which proceeded each. The first was straight out of the “Man of Lemonche” soundtrack. We couldn’t place the second one. But they created a rowdy ambience which Wright himself acknowledged as unequalled in his lecturing experience. These two lectures will be turned into a book on sacramental theology to be published by the University. So I feel like it was one of those historic moments I’ll treasure.