Sunday, March 18, 2012

Get Thee To the Church: St. Stephen Martyr, Washington, DC

For Christmas Joe's parents gave us a gift certificate to Marcel's, a five-star French restaurant in Northwest Washington, near George Washington University and Georgetown. Right across the street is the Melrose Hotel, and why don't you just spend the night and we'll stay with the kids?
Sounded just fine to us.
Saturday night: A fantastic dinner. (The kids got to go to Dave and Buster's in Richmond. I think they felt like their evening was MUCH better than ours.) A lovely night's sleep in a nice hotel. And guess what was literally right next door to the Melrose? St. Stephen Martyr Church. We couldn't have planned it any better. And never mind the change to daylight savings time and losing an hour's sleep; so what if we woke up at 8 instead of 7? Plenty of time to make it to 9 am Mass when we only had to walk ten feet.

I love churches with great acoustics. I love the way the voices of the cantor and the lector and the priest resonate and echo through the room; it makes me want to pay closer attention to the words they are speaking. (They also probably have a great sound system--although the little boy in the back who spent the entire Mass crying and screaming and banging on the pews was not hooked up to any microphone, and everyone could hear him just fine. I tried my best to ignore him, and resisted the temptation to walk back and politely ask his parents to PLEASE take him into the vestibule.)

I'm ALWAYS losing things, and St. Anthony helps me every day. I loved this statue of him.

There is a beautiful little side chapel in honor of Our Lady of Lourdes.
It was a lovely Mass--no choir or piano or organ, but we sang all the hymns and chants a capella, which was fabulous. After church, we checked out of the hotel and drove a few blocks into Georgetown, where we enjoyed a great brunch at the Peacock Cafe, and then waited in line at this place for half an hour for dessert, which we brought home to share with everyone.

(The one in the middle with the flower on top? Gluten free chocolate lava. Delicious, and you couldn't even tell it was gluten free.)
Oh! And we found this: the only surviving pre-Revolutionary building in Washington.

Happy Sunday, everyone! Now get thee to church!


  1. Hi Sharon,

    What a beautiful church! I go to a St. Stephen Protomartyr Church in my home town but it's not as lovely as this one. You and your hubby must have enjoyed your alone time together as your children had a blast too! Happy Feast of St. Joseph!

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