Father Bob Interviews Michael Polsinelli
Although frequently overshadowed by Good Friday and Easter, Palm Sunday is an important part of Jesus’ ministry on its own. Palm Sunday commemorates the triumphal entrance of Christ into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-9), when palm branches were placed in His path, and yet, despite the significance of Palm Sunday, we know what is to come in just a short time, that that same crowd would cry for Jesus’ crucifixion, and for a criminal to be released in His place.
This coming Easter Vigil, our RCIA candidates will receive their sacraments and enter the Church. One such candidate, Michael Polsinelli, has a slightly different perspective on the process. Read and see how he’s preparing himself for Easter, and then do the same for yourself.DOWNLOAD THE BULLETIN HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE
Father Bob: Michael, tell us about yourself.
Michael Polsinelli: Well, I’m 10 years old and I go to Sunshine Elementary. I’m in 4th grade and I play baseball for The Buckeyes in a league at Buckingham Park. I play first base.
FB: That’s great! So tell me – most children are baptized right after birth, but you weren’t. And now, at 10 years old, you’ve chosen to enter the church and receive your sacraments through the RCIA program. This is a major thing. How did you come to that decision?
MP: We’d stopped going to church for a while, but when we found this Church, it felt right. I really like coming here. My family and I started talking more and more about joining and part of that conversation had to do with my sacraments – you know, how I didn’t have them.
FB: So what does this all mean to you? How are you processing this experience as a 10-year old?
MP: When I learned about the sacrament in the adapted RCIA program, Baptism being the washing away of original sin, I realized how important that is… And then Eucharist being an act of thanksgiving. That’s also a very important concept for me.
FB: So we know there’s always a story behind people’s Confirmation name. What name did you choose and tell me a little bit about how that choice came about?
MP: I chose St. Paul because my father chose St. Michael for my name, his name is Paul, and I like his writings.
FB: He was a great writer. He wrote more letters than probably anyone else in the Bible – the Phillipians; the Galatians; the Corinthians. I mean he wrote to a lot of people all over the world and many consider him to be the greatest missionary in the Church. But, you know, he died for his work, and his belief in Christ – which has me thinking. You probably see a lot of disturbing things on the news, or maybe even in school, that challenges your faith in a deep way. How do you give witness to the Gospel and your faith as a young 10-year old boy?
MP: I think the answer to everything is in the Gospel. It’s really “The Truth” and we should refer to it when we’re forced to make hard decisions.
FB: Are you ever challenged by other kids with regard to your faith? Do you find it hard to play a competitive sport, like baseball, and still stay true to your faith?
MP: It can be.
FB: So what does your life look like in 20 years? Is God leading you in any particular direction?
MP: Well I’d love to play a professional sport, but if that doesn’t work out… I think I could see myself as a teacher, or maybe become a mechanic like my father.
FB: That’s fantastic. And so the time is coming soon when you’ll be received into the Church. How do you feel about that? You excited?
MP: Oh yeah. I’ve being coming up for a blessing all this time, and now I’ll be able to receive the Eucharist – I will really feel a part of the Church.
FB: And you will be – that’s really wonderful. Tell me about that medal you’re wearing around your neck.
MP: Oh, my Aunt Nancy got this for me in Washington DC. It’s a St. Michael medal.
FB: Do you know that he’s the great protector saint? He will always protect you. So we’re sitting here at the baptismal font, and this is where we’re going to baptize you on Holy Saturday night. We’re going to dip you in here and put this Chrism oil on your head. It’s got a beautiful scent. It signifies that wherever you go in life, you bring the fragrance of Christ with you. So you are going to be an apostle of the Lord. It’s going to be a great evening… it’s a little long, about two and a half hours. But we’re going to have great music, and great company. I hear you like some liturgical music too, is that right?
MP: I really like that song Sing to the Mountains. It’s very uplifting. So much of Church music is slow, and I remember once I requested it to the music director after the final blessing one week, and they actually played it.
FB: Yes, that song is as old as I’ve been a priest. I remember singing it in seminary… It’s been around a while. And you know, on that note, if the pro sports, and the teaching or being a mechanic doesn’t work out, I’d love for you to think about becoming a priest. We could use more guys like you. You’d be great…. And priests are teachers too! We try to exemplify the life of St. Paul. So good luck in all you do, good luck in your baseball game tonight, and many blessings on your journey of faith.