Sacred Heart Colorado Springs

Sacred Heart, Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA


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Mystery Worshipper:
Church: Sacred Heart
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
Date of visit: Sunday, 1 August 2010, 11:00am

The building

Moorish stucco with lovely rose window and a red tile roof. The inside has massive wooden beams, beautifully hand-carved altar chairs, and a huge glass altar screen with the Paraclete behind.

The church

Their ministries are well described on their website. Special mention goes to the BeFrienders, who "provide a listening presence to anyone experiencing grief, loss, transition, or...other stressful events", and the Lord's Dinner, a meal served each Sunday night "for those in our neighborhood in need of a hot meal and fellowship." There are three masses each Sunday, morning prayer plus mass on weekdays, holy hour/adoration on Saturday mornings, and a Saturday evening mass.

The neighborhood

Colorado Springs lies just east of the geographic center of the state of Colorado. In the mid 19th century, the city found itself in the midst of the Colorado gold rush. In the early 20th century, persons seeking health cures were attracted to the city's warm, dry climate, clean air, and mineral springs. The waters were rich in fluoride, and in 1909 a dentist named Frederick McKay established the link between "Colorado stain" on people's teeth and a reduction in tooth decay. His discovery, however, did not result in the widespread adoption of fluoridation until the 1950s. The city enjoys some spectacular views of the Rocky Mountains and is home to the United States Air Force Academy. The church is on a main street (Pikes Peak Avenue) in a residential section of town.

The cast

The Revd Patrick Hanna, CSC, was the celebrant. The Revd Noel Leslie, vicar general of the Diocese of Belize, was the homilist. Sue Gerlach was the leader of song, assisted by five choir members.

What was the name of the service?

Sunday Mass

How full was the building?

About three-quarters full.

Did anyone welcome you personally?

Yes, many people at the door.

Was your pew comfortable?


How would you describe the pre-service atmosphere?

Chatty and friendly.

What were the exact opening words of the service?

"Good morning, everyone."

What books did the congregation use during the service?

Breaking Bread 2010.

What musical instruments were played?

Organ and piano.

Did anything distract you?

There was nothing that distracted us.

Was the worship stiff-upper-lip, happy clappy, or what?

A pretty standard novus ordo mass.

Exactly how long was the sermon?

10 minutes.

On a scale of 1-10, how good was the preacher?

7 – Father Leslie's accent took a bit of getting used to.

In a nutshell, what was the sermon about?

"Where your treasure is." Father Leslie talked to us about Belize's problems and how we could help with our treasure, if we could.

Which part of the service was like being in heaven?

The singing was great.

And which part was like being in... er... the other place?

There was nothing that struck us as "other-placeish."

What happened when you hung around after the service looking lost?

An invitation to coffee and donuts in the adjoining building was forthcoming.

How would you describe the after-service coffee?

Great coffee, lemonade and fresh donuts.

How would you feel about making another visit (where 10 = ecstatic, 0 = terminal)?

7 – The parishioners are such a happy bunch and obviously are happy to be there, and so were we!

Did the service make you feel glad to be a Christian?


What one thing will you remember about all this in seven days' time ?

The joy of the parishioners.

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