By Jessica Able, Record Staff Writer
This week marks the final appearance of Dr. Judy Bullock’s Liturgy Matters column in The Record.
Bullock, director of the Archdiocese of Louisville’s Office of Worship and author of the bi-monthly column, will retire at the end of the year.
Liturgy Matters began three years ago as a way to provide ongoing education about the liturgy, she said in an interview last week.
“I always felt like when you know more about what you are doing at Mass, you get more out of it,” she said. That knowledge “has changed my life and enthusiasm and love of liturgy.”
Through writing the column, Bullock said, she saw her own faith deepen and grow.
“I hoped to convey my love of the liturgy to others. It’s always been my joy. I never tire of teaching the liturgy; it’s the most important thing we do,” she said.
Bullock has worked for the Archdiocese of Louisville since 1974 and served as the director of the Office of Worship for 20 years. She is the first woman to lead the worship office.
She holds a music degree from Bellarmine University, a master’s in theology with specialization in liturgical studies from the University of Notre Dame and a doctorate in education from Spalding University.
She began her career in liturgy as an organist at St. Baranabas Church. Through the urging of the late Father John Gephart, who was pastor of St. Barnabas at the time, she began to attend local and national workshops in the area of liturgy.
“The enthusiasm was there. I liked to do the reading and research — it was like a fire in my belly,” she said.
She went on to become the director of music and liturgy at St. Lawrence Church and later at St. Agnes Church.
She completed her undergraduate and master’s degrees while working and caring for her three children. With the support of her husband, Pat, she traveled to Notre Dame to complete her liturgical studies degree during the course of seven summers.
She took the reins of the worship office at a time when few women held liturgical degrees and even fewer led liturgy formation offices. Through her years as director, she said she has witnessed significant changes.
When she first came to the worship office, she said she and others were still trying to implement changes and recommendations of the Second Vatican Council.
“Now all the formation is much more refined and developed,” she said.
Bullock said she always considered her work in the church as a vocation.
“I always thought that’s what it was — a vocation. I also had a family, but a large portion of my life has been working in the church,” she said.
Read Bullock’s final column — “The face of mercy” — here.