Fr. Joe's Letter

Fr. Joe’s Letter

Oct 26, 2022

This weekend we celebrate our annual Solemn Eucharistic Devotions which began on Friday with a special school Mass at 9:30 AM. Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament continues on the main altar throughout the weekend, and we will have our Solemn Closing with Mass, Evening Prayer, and a procession with the Blessed Sacrament today at 5 PM.  Our homilist will be Fr. Joe Menkhaus, recently ordained Parochial Vicar at St. Bernadette Parish in Westlake. Those preparing to receive their First Holy Communion and Confirmation will also join in our procession to honor the Eucharistic presence of our Lord. Please make every effort to be a part of this special weekend of praise and prayer as we give thanks to God for the gift of Himself in the Holy Eucharist. 

Tuesday, November 1 is the Feast of All Saints, a holy day of obligation.  This means that we are to participate in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass under the pain of mortal sin.  So, to deliberately miss Mass on a holy day of obligation is a matter for confession.  One may not receive the Eucharist until one has received the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  This has always been a teaching of the Church that has never been changed except in the minds of some people including some priests as well.  There will be a vigil Mass on Monday, October 31 at 5 PM.  Masses on Tuesday are at 9:30 AM and 7 PM.

The Feast of All Saints provides the opportunity to honor all those who have gone before us in faith and now are enjoying eternal life and happiness in God’s heavenly kingdom.  We realize there are more saints in heaven than we may know or have been officially canonized by the Church.  All the saints give us a wonderful example of what it means to be a follower of Jesus Christ. The saints are those who hear the word of God and put it into practice.  In Matthew 24, Jesus tells us that we will be judged at the end of life based on His command to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, and visit the sick and imprisoned because when we do these things for anyone, we do them for Jesus Himself.  For this He will welcome us into the Father’s House where He has prepared a place for us.

On Wednesday, November 2, we celebrate the Feast of All Souls or Poor Souls.  On this day we especially pray for those who have died and have not yet reached the heavenly kingdom.  We pray for the poor souls in purgatory.  Purgatory is that state of being in which we make up for our sins on earth and thereby complete the journey to God our Creator.  Our prayers are very important to the poor souls because they cannot help themselves.  The best prayer that we can offer for the poor souls is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.  That is why it is so important to have Masses said for the dead. On Wednesday evening, November 2 at 7:00 PM we will have our annual memorial Mass for those who have died this past year.  All are invited to attend this Mass especially those who have lost loved ones this past year.

Last weekend you received in the bulletin a summary of our financial report for this past fiscal year.  As you can see from the report, we are doing okay.  Due to the pandemic, we received around $145,000 from the Payroll Tension Fund.  We have also been receiving funds from The Heart of the Shepherd Campaign.  Just recently we received a check for $59,380 from the Heart of the Shepherd Campaign.  These funds are the result of your generosity to this campaign which is to raise funds for the seminary and the priest’s retirement fund.  We are very grateful for your continued generosity and your faithfulness to the pledges made to this campaign.

Just as in your own finances, we never know what can happen in the future so we try to stay ahead of the things that could go wrong.  I am very grateful to our business manager, Jeff Flaherty, who does a very fine job, as well as to our Finance Council: Kevin Haas, Janelle Niese, Chris Serger, Joe Turk, and Chong Won.  I truly appreciate all of their help in caring for our financial dealings and needs.  I know I could never do those things myself.  We are so blessed to have such talented and generous people in our parish family.  Again, God bless everyone who donates their time, talent, and treasure for the good of our parish and the building up of God’s kingdom here on earth.

RECEPTION OF HOLY COMMUNION.  It seems that there are a number of people who would like to kneel to receive Holy Communion.  To accommodate this desire more easily, we will be placing two kneelers in the main nave of the church so that people could more easily do this.  We have been doing this for the weekday Masses and it seems to work pretty well.  This would not work in the east or west nave because there is not enough room.  So, if you would like to receive Holy Communion kneeling, please sit in the main nave.  This is simply a way that we can encourage those who wish to show this particular gesture of reverence while receiving Holy Communion.

Fr. Joe Labak