Parish Stories

St. Patrick's

Denison, TX Diocese of Dallas


“The priest’s voice sounded like God to me”

Mike McDonald

While sharing Thanksgiving with our family, my niece wanted to attend Mass, and I went with her. Although there are two Catholic churches in the town we were visiting, she found this little monastery of Dominican Sisters — Monastery of the Infant Jesus in Lufkin, TX.

I first noticed the tabernacle and the sanctuary light. There were about 30 people in attendance, so the pews were almost full. To the right and out of our sight, the sisters sat. I would not have known they were there but for their angelic voices during the service.

I cried from the beginning to the end of the Mass – really from before the beginning and after the end. I wasn’t sobbing but tears were flowing, and I wasn’t even sure why except that I felt the Presence of Christ. I stood when everyone stood, I sat when everyone sat, I kneeled when everyone kneeled. And I cried.

I said to myself, ‘Touch me,’ over and over. I felt His Presence like never before. He repeated, ‘Touch ME.’

And I cried.

The sisters sang like angels. The priest’s voice sounded like God to me. I tried to hang on to every single word and action.

And I cried.

I did not want to leave that room.

When we returned to the car, I looked at my niece and that is when the sobs came. I wasn’t embarrassed, and she wasn’t embarrassed for me. When I somewhat gained control of myself, she said:

‘That is the Presence of Jesus.’

Then I sobbed some more.

To finish this story, I have been seeking holiness. I have only rarely felt holiness in any church, but I have been searching.

I told my niece that I think I was errantly looking for holiness in the physical beauty of a church, but I found it in this little, nondescript sanctuary hidden away amidst tall pine trees in a small town.

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