- Professor of Liturgical and Sacramental Theology, 1995-present
- Ph.D., The Catholic University of American, 1990
- M.Div., Yale Divinity School/Institute of Sacred Music, 1983
- B.A., Marymount Manhattan College/The Mannes College of Music, 1973
"I come to the task of Liturgical Theology as a practicing liturgical musician and with the conviction that the academic study of liturgy needs to be grounded in the actual practice of the Christian community in worship. I am particularly interested in an interdisciplinary approach (cultural anthropology and the arts) to liturgical studies and am currently focusing on the impact of the New Cosmology on worship."
I was born and raised in the New York City area and joined the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary in 1973 after receiving a B.A. degree in piano performance through a joint program with the Mannes College of Music. After Novitiate I worked in a parochial school teaching math and religion and in the parish as a musician. I also began to study the organ and transferred my keyboard skills to a new instrument. Not content with parish ministry alone and anxious to study theology as well as music, I attended Yale Divinity School through the Instituted of Sacred Music. As interested as I was in music, I found myself gravitating toward liturgical theology as a primary field, and music as a way of keeping my hand in ministry. Consequently I went to Catholic University for doctoral studies in liturgical theology while working as a parish organist.
After teaching in a variety of theological schools for a period of five years after receiving my Ph.D., I came to The Aquinas Institute of Theology where I have found a theological home in this Dominican Institution. Publishing articles on the Vatican II liturgical reform has been a priority for me, and I have recently published a series of articles in two major commentaries on the Missal edited by Edward Foley and others. The first was co-authored with David Power, “Theological and Pastoral Reflections” on the General Instruction of the Roman Missal. In a forthcoming volume on the new translation of the 3rd edition of the Roman Missal I have three articles on the Mystagogical Implications of the “Opening Rite,” “Liturgy of the Word,” and the “Preparation of the Gifts.”
Committed to the full humanity and dignity of women and their participation in the church, I have an ongoing interest in feminist studies within the Roman Catholic tradition. As one of the liberation theologies, this focus has kept me alert to the needs of the marginalized in church and society. Not only committed to the academic study of women in church and society, for the past fifteen years I have been a founding member of and participant in Womenbuild, an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity St. Louis, which builds for the working poor living in substandard housing, most of whom are single women with children. I am also very committed to the support and development of the emergence of lay ministries within the church, and have recently published a chapter on the role of ritual in Zeni Fox’s book on Lay Ecclesial Ministry.
- North American Academy of Liturgy (vice president 2010, president 2011)
- Catholic Theological Society of America
- Catholic Academy of Liturgy
- Theology of Worship
- Pastoral Care of the Sick
- Christian Initiation
- Liturgy and Preaching
- “Praying With the New Cosmology.” Proceeding of the NAAL Annual Meeting (Jan. 6 – 9, 2011), 3-16.
- Trinity Sunday: Understanding and Preaching It.” Liturgical Ministry 19 (Fall 2010): 182-87.
- “Mystagogical Implications for the Opening Rites, the Liturgy of the Word and the Preparation of Gifts.” Ordo Missae Project. (Collegeville: Liturgical Press, 2011) In print
- “Have You Received a Master’s Degree Yet.” NPM Magazine (May, 2010):
- “Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Ritual.” In Lay Ecclesial Ministry: Pathways Toward the Future, ed. Zeni Fox. Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc. pp. 85-100.
- “The Challenge of the New Science to Liturgy.” Worship 83/1 (2009): 19-30.
- Celebrating Divine Mystery: A Primer in Liturgical Theology. Collegeville, MN: Michael Glazier/Liturgical Press, 2009.
“Praying With the New Cosmology.” Proceeding of the NAAL Annual Meeting (Jan. 6 – 9, 2011), 3-16.