I was the Godparent to the child of a friend of mine this last Saturday. He’s basically non-practicing, and his wife is a little better. But I am hoping to “exert some influence” and I already told them that we all made promises at the baptism, and that I was going to keep an eye on them and “bust some heads” if I needed to! (Don’t worry, we still get along…)
Anyway, I have two unrelated questions.
The baptism was at Mass. I thought we were not supposed to have public baptisms during Lent (and I thought that, unless unusual circumstances warranted it, it’s preferable to not have baptisms at all during Lent). Am I misinformed? I was honored to be the Godparent of this new child of God, but I couldn’t help but shake the thought that “we shouldn’t be doing this now.”
Totally unrelated, my friend, before Mass started, leaned over to me and said, “OK, I understand Jesus, the Virgin Mary, and St. Joseph. But what’s up with Martin Luther King?” Confused, I asked what he meant. He pointed out that in the altar area, there was Jesus on the cross. Then on the base of the altar, there are carvings on the base of people. I saw from where I was that these carvings went all the way around, and I couldn’t see who was on the sides. But on the front was a carving of the Virgin Mary, St. Joseph, and Martin Luther King, Jr. I admitted to him that I had no idea how that fit. He was a great man, but not only is he not a canonized Saint, he wasn’t even Catholic.
I have to believe that there are dos and don’ts regarding images that may appear on an altar. This strikes me as a “don’t.” Does anyone know?