A Lesson in Suffering
Words were not enough for the Rev. Arthur Michalka to impress upon his parishioners the pain Jesus suffered during crucifixion.So on Wednesday, during evening Mass at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Corn Hill, he called about 15 children to come forward so he could prick their palms with an unsterilized pin.
"What I was trying to teach them is that suffering is a part of life," said Michalka, 78, on Friday.
But the Catholic Diocese of Austin and the parents of one child who was pricked did not think it a prudent lesson. The diocese is conducting an investigation into the incident, though doctors say the risk of exposure to disease is probably low.
"What were you thinking?" said Debbie Sybert, a Jarrell resident whose 11-year-old daughter, Amanda, was pricked during Mass. "Apparently our father has lost his mind."
I'd have to agree. This is just weird. There are so many ways to bring kids in to the liturgical experience and impart some significance of it, the readings, whatever, to them on their level. Pricking their palms is not one of them.