Meet the Louisiana priest behind a 100-gallon crop duster blessing

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It is a beautiful thing when the sacred and the quirky come together in such a way that only Catholicism can arrange. Filling a crop duster plane with holy water and blessing an entire small town definitely qualifies as sacred and quirky in the best way. This week we chat with Father Matthew Barzare, the pastor of St. Anne Church in Cow Island, La., who gave the blessing.

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We get the full story from Father Matt: Where did the idea come from? Were there logistical issues? Canonical issues? What buildings got blessed? (Sneak peak: The town bar is among them.)

In Signs of the Times, we unpack Pope Francis’ Lenten message and get a special Lenten penance from our friends Stephanie Butnick and Liel Leibovitz from Unorthodox, the world’s leading Jewish podcast. We also discuss the devastating revelations of the sexual misconduct by the late founder of L’Arche, Jean Vanier.

Tell us what you think about the episode on our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and help other listeners find Jesuitical by leaving us a review on Apple Podcasts. Please consider supporting the show by becoming a member of our Patreon community. Patrons get access to an exclusive newsletter written by one of your hosts each week!

Links from the show

Internal report finds that L’Arche founder Jean Vanier engaged in decades of sexual misconduct
Pope Francis delivers annual message for Lent
Pope Francis recognizes the martyrdom of Jesuit Rutilio Grande and two lay companions in El Salvador
Why does it take so long for the Catholic Church to recognize martyrs of justice?
Louisiana parish uses plane to bless town with 100 gallons of holy water

What’s on tap?

Everything but the liquor cabinet (before we start our dry Lent)

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