By DIANE TURNER-HURNS
Journal & Topics Reporter
In an effort to get to know the community better, Rosemont’s Our Lady of Hope Church, 9711 Devon Ave., started the Neighborhood Home Mass program.
The first outdoor Mass was held Sunday, July 12 in John and Laurie Hansen’s backyard in the Scott Street subdivision. Lt. Hansen works in the Rosemont Public Safety Department.
“It was wonderful,” Our Lady of Hope Rev. John Clemens told the Journal & Topics. “The Hansens were the first to volunteer to be host to a Mass.
“For this new program we have asked our parishioners to volunteer their homes and invite their neighbors to attend.”
Fr. Clemens said church staff brings all materials to the home needed for a Mass celebration including an altar, chairs and guitarist. The service runs about 45 minutes and sacraments are given.
“We had about 40 people attend the outdoor mass July 12 and I stayed a bit afterwards just talking to people,” Clemens said. “It’s a great way to get to know your neighbors. Having it outside was also particularly nice.
“The purpose of this program is to do smaller, neighborhood masses in a more intimate setting to get to know our community. We enjoy having the outdoor Mass and meeting with folks afterward.”
It takes about four staffers to setup the home Mass. Clemens urged anyone who would like to be host to call him directly at 847-825-4673.
Just a week after the first neighborhood service, Clemens said another Rosemont volunteer has offered to have Mass at his home.
“It’s not confirmed yet, but that person is also involved in our youth activities, so perhaps we will be able to interest more young folks in attending as well,” Clemens said.
Clemens on Monday was with the church’s youth group that had traveled to northern Wisconsin to help at a camp for handicapped youth.
There is no fee for the neighborhood Mass and music is included.