Pastor’s Corner – November 12, 2017
What a busy time, and an exciting time, it has been for our parish over the last month or so. From the Festival de la Grande Eglise to the Cemetery Tours to All Saints and All Souls Day and our Annual Memorial Mass. Of course, for me personally, my father’s death and burial has given me a new perspective on our prayers for the dead and appreciation for those who God has placed in my life to help me along the path of faith.
My thanks again to you all for the outpouring of prayers, cards, flowers, phone calls, texts and support at Dad’s funeral. Especially, thanks to our clergy and staff for holding down the fort while I was in Pennsylvania for his burial last weekend. It all went well, and he is now “home” not only in spirit, but in body. May he rest in peace!
We continue for the next few weeks with our prayers for those of our community who have passed before us. The poster with the names of those of our community and their family members who passed away over the last year will remain in front of the Marian altar until Thanksgiving week for those who would like to pray for them by name. We are reminded that praying for the dead is a good and pious act (2 Maccabees 12:46), and is one of the traditional Spiritual Works of Mercy. This pious devotion is good for our souls and helps us to grow in our knowledge and love of Jesus, so I encourage all of us to continue to pray for them during this time.
This time of year is also devoted to a reflection on the end of our life, meaning why we were created (to know, to love and to serve God and to be with Him in eternal life) and our specific purpose, meaning how we are called to concretely live a life of discipleship in our earthly life. Next week we will also celebrate Thanksgiving, and while it is a secular holiday, it certainly has religious themes and is an appropriate time to thank God for all the blessings he has given to us, particularly the gift of our Catholic Faith and His Church through which that faith is transmitted and given to us to live as disciples. All of our discipleship, our faith, hope and charity, flows from our Love of God, and enables us to be good disciples by Loving our Neighbor.
In the coming weeks, we will celebrate and acknowledge Christ as our King (our “New Year’s Eve Party”) and then begin preparation for Christmas with the beginning of Advent (our “New Year”). In our reflection on our purpose and vocation during these days of November, in the background should be our conversion and changing our life by receiving Jesus and His Grace at Christmas to be better disciples. As usual, we will have special opportunities for Confession during Advent with “The Light is on for You” on Wednesday evenings from 6:30pm until 8pm as well as additional Confession times on weekends. We hope you are able to take advantage of these opportunities in order to “prepare the way of the Lord” at Christmas!
Food Boxes During November
As usual we will focus on helping those who are in need during the holiday season. We will again place boxes at the doors of the church during the month of November for non-perishable food donations. The donations will be sent to ICONS, our local food pantry, for distribution to those in need in our community. Please be generous in helping during the holiday season, during which our food pantry is especially stressed in meeting the need of those in need of help with food.
Baby Bottle Campaign
Thanks to all of you who participated in the Baby Bottle Campaign over the last few weekends. There was a good response and we have sent the bottles to the women’s help center for accounting and of course use for support of those they serve. What a wonderful way to support and help women to make the choice for life and to help their children, some of the most vulnerable of those among us. Once we receive the total amount of the gifts, we will publish it here. Many thanks to Sarah Ortego and her family for their help in coordinating the campaign over the two weekends.