On the Inside

By Jenny Dendinger

When I was a child, there was a popular pet store in Covington called Mr. Fish. Inside you could find almost every pet imaginable! As soon as you opened the door, the aroma of puppies and bunnies and bird cages smacked you right in the face. (The excitement of that sensual experience faded as I got older.)

Despite its fun atmosphere, the famous northshore pet store eventually closed.

Interestingly, I enter that building even more now than I ever did as a child. As crazy as it might sound, my family walks through those same doors every Sunday seeking Jesus in the Eucharist. The lingering scent of incense has replaced the pet odor, and the wall that once displayed a sea of fish tanks is now where we share a quick, understanding nod as we join in line for confession.

On the inside, it has been transformed.

My family has attended the Traditional Latin Mass at Our Lady of Mount Carmel for the past two years. Our community is saving for a chapel of our own, but for now, Mass is offered in the Northshore Catholic Center.

Since we meet in an ordinary building, our church is somewhat camouflaged. When giving directions, we often say, “We’re in the old Mr. Fish,” since anyone looking for a typical Catholic church will pass us right up.

But, just as Mary and Joseph welcomed baby Jesus in a cave, our little chapel serves as a reminder to us that Jesus does not need marble walls, stained glass windows or cathedral ceilings to be present. Our savior didn’t require anything fancy to carry out the work that God had planned for him.

With this in mind, our little community devotes ourselves to doing God’s work without too much concern over where we meet.

So, if you ever find yourself driving on Highway 190 in front of the old Mr. Fish building, I’d like to invite you to make the sign of the cross. Although the outside doesn’t look much like a Catholic church, the truth is, on the inside resides our king.


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