All worship, no matter what church or ‘faith group,’ is termed Divine Services. And on the ship, when there is worship, the church pennant is flown.
In addition to the Christian pennant, there is another one.
What is unique about the Navy’s church pennant is that it actually flies above the National Ensign – the United States flag.
The Feast of the Immaculate Conception here in Djibouti was transferred to the 9th – in a Muslim nation Friday night is like our Saturday night, and thus people are free to get out to a special event.
Seven people from the base parish joined me at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Good Shepherd. We had a rosary procession followed by Mass in the grotto. My predecessor here told me of the event and emphasized that the Indian community was the organizers behind the event. The Indians are among the many foreign nationals working here and many of the sisters from the various religious communities are also Indian.
Thus I was lead to believe that this was an English language Mass.
So this past Friday I concelebrated my first Mass in French.
Boy, I am glad I have been studying these past two months!
Anyway, I have a drop-dead date of 22FEB11 to be fluent enough in French to offer the Mass on my own. Come Lent I will be needed to fill in some gaps in the local Church.
This is NOT like my tours in Iraq, but that’s okay, it’s working out.
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