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home : features : community round-up August 20, 2017

Parish offers unique blend of spirituality and Springsteen

By Christina Leslie | Correspondent

Are you a shore-area “Jersey Girl” or boy bored with television because there’s “57 Channels (and Nothin’ On)”? Could you use a dose of both Bruce and Catholic Social Teaching at a church just 23 miles away from The Stone Pony? Then drive your “Pink Cadillac” down the “Backstreets” of Ocean County to St. Barnabas Parish, Bayville, where Father Kevin J. Keelen will present “The Spirituality of Bruce Springsteen – An Evening of Rock & Roll Reflection” on Oct. 18 from 7 to 9 p.m.

Father Keelen will focus upon the Paschal Mystery and theology behind two of Springsteen’s albums, “The Ghost of Tom Joad” (1995) and “The Rising” (2002). “Bruce is a Catholic and deeply spiritual; his music reflects a lot of Catholic social teaching,” Father Keelen declared.

“In [The Ghost of Tom] Joad, he crawls under the skin of the poor and reveals their story in a profound way, and ‘The Rising’ touches on bereavement ministry and consolation,” he added.

Many biblical and sacramental references are sprinkled throughout Springsteen’s lyrics, Father Keelen noted; the priest will also discuss the Father Andrew M. Greeley article “The Catholic Imagination of Bruce Springsteen” in which the troubadour is dubbed a “Catholic Meistersinger.”

The presentation will be held at the parish’s Brennan Hall located at 33 Woodland Road in Bayville. For further information or to register, call St. Barnabas at 732-269-2208, ext. 100. Walk-ins are welcome.

So whether you’ve got a “Hungry Heart” or simply want to relive your “Glory Days,” do “The E Street Shuffle” down to St. Barnabas for a music-filled look at Springsteen and spirituality.

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