by Ethan Mack
The first time I heard of the Saint Thomas More Society (STM) was when I was invited by the group’s president on Student Activities Day. He informed me of how it was the largest Catholic group on campus and how a regular meeting would consist of an hour of adoration followed by a discussion of faith with pizza called “Theology by the Slice.” He continued to explain the group’s mission on campus, but in my mind all I could dwell on was the question: “What on earth is ‘adoration’?” Desiring not to look foolish, however, I kept my question to myself.
The next Monday, despite not being completely sure of what it was, I attended the 5:30 adoration in Saint Mary’s Chapel. I took a seat in the pews among 20 or 30 other people. Eventually, the priest and two altar servers came out and those in attendance began to chant the “O Salutaris Hostia,” a Latin hymn written by Saint Thomas Aquinas that is generally sung at the start of adoration. While I took two semesters of Latin in high school, I was not proficient enough to speak let alone sing in it. I noticed how most every other person there had the whole hymn memorized. It was at this point that I decided I had made a mistake coming. However, as I was getting up, one of the STM members brought me a pamphlet which laid out the hymns and explained the whole ritual of adoration.
That is exactly kind of thing you will find happens all the time within the STM community. At its core, STM is a group of imperfect people helping each other live out their shared Catholic faith. It is not a competition of holiness like one might expect from a religious group.
A little more than a year later, I can safely say that going to that first meeting was one of the best decisions I ever made at BC. Within the Saint Thomas More community I have formed many of the closest friendships I have ever had. I have learned that friendship, which shares a devotion to the Lord, carries with it a depth that I had never before experienced. Through STM, I have also grown to appreciate aspects of Catholic life that I previously had not explored. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, something that was once strange to me, is now something I look forward to at the beginning of every week.
STM truly is a community of very faithful people who are very strongly devoted to Christ. If that is the kind of community you are looking for, then I hope to see you this Monday at 6pm in the chapel.