I have been directing the Liturgical Movement Ministry at St. Patrick’s Church in Seattle for the past 25 years. I am so grateful to have a home-base church community that is open to the gifts of movement as prayer woven graciously throughout our sacramental life. Our parish statement is this – “We, the people of God at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, are a welcoming Christ-centered community committed to keeping alive the vision and hope of Vatican II. Our Sunday liturgy, enhanced by the creative arts, strengthens us for the work of peace and justice in the world and challenges us to live in communion with one another and all of creation.” I am honored to assist the parish in engaging the creative arts to pray through the liturgy with our whole bodies and selves and to nourish ourselves for the work of justice in the world.
I began offering movement prayers as solo pieces at St. Patrick’s in the early 1990’s, as processionals or interpretive movement to the lectionary readings. Over the years, the ministry has expanded to include:
- American Sign Language psalms with young children
- Interpretive Movement and dramatics with the youth and teens
- Processions for Feast Days or Seasons
- Communion Meditations
- Intergenerational embodied readings and prayers
- Gestured Prayer for the Assembly
- Easter Vigil, Christmas Eve and Pentecost with festive and reflective movement prayer
At St. Patrick’s we have a large deaf community, and so the entire Mass is signed in American Sign Language each Sunday. Over the past 20 years, the interpreters and Deaf Community have taught our ministry much American Sign Language so that we can incorporate it into our movement offerings and also support our entire assembly in praying in the language of gesture to honor our deaf brothers and sisters.
Please see the Calendar page for a list of upcoming offerings at St. Patrick’s church. And below, find video examples of Movement Prayers throughout the seasons:
This clip captures the joy of integrating movement with the teens at the start of the Christmas Eve liturgy.
One of the Youth StoryDances that we have developed at St. Patrick’s has been published as a script by Church Publishing under their division Skiturgies. We are happy to share our artistry and prayer as a resource for the larger Christian community.
Script available for purchase here.
Communion Meditation: Prayer of St. Francis
Parable of the Talents
An offering by the youth at an Interfaith Thanksgiving gathering.
Many of our movement offerings at St. Patrick’s Church are available for viewing on the St. Patrick’s Youtube page