Our annual Catholic Charities Appeal has begun. A time to heal. A time to help. Many parishioners received letters in January inviting their support of the Appeal. Please pray for the good work of Catholic Charities and make a pledge today. Your donation makes a difference! Your support of the 2023 Catholic Charities Appeal will help us serve those individuals who are most in need and most vulnerable. From Matthew’s Gospel: Whatever you did for the least of these, you did it for me. When we feed the hungry, take care of the sick, and welcome the stranger, we are also serving Jesus himself. We appreciate your donation and will take special care to use it wisely in providing essential programs and services to people in need throughout all eight counties of the Diocese of Cleveland. We invite you to view stories of inspiration and more information at CatholicCommunity.org/2023Appeal. Our in pew solicitation will be conducted the weekend of February 18 and 19. Our parish family has always been so very generous to our Catholic Charities Appeal. It is a wonderful way to help those who are in need in our local Church. I pray your generosity will continue and grow stronger with this year’s appeal. May God bless you for your great generosity to our brothers and sisters in need.
DON’T FORGET: Saturday, February 11, 2023, will be our annual World Marriage Day celebration in McMahon Hall. The dinner will follow the 5 PM Mass and the blessing for married couples. This is a time for all of us to pray for those couples living within the Sacrament of Marriage and to thank God for the gift of this sacrament on which we build our families and the Church itself. We are planning a very entertaining evening with a lot of laughs.
In a few weeks you will notice something new in your pews in church. We have purchased a new hymnal for the church. The hymnal still has the same format with the readings for each Sunday and a great selection of hymns. The hymns may seem a little more traditional, but I believe that is good as it will lend more reverence and prayerfulness to our worship of God. Taste in music can vary a great deal among people. This is not about what a person likes in church hymns, it is really about what the hymns say to God in our worship. Many of the older and more familiar hymns speak words of praise and thanks to God; they speak of His glory and the glory of our Blessed Mother and the Saints. Many of the more modern hymns seem to be telling God what we are doing for Him and others. I do not believe that this is what hymns are meant to do. Look at the hymn, “Holy God, We Praise Thy Name,” we speak these words to God and praise Him for all he does for us. A hymn like, “Seek Ye First The Kingdom of God,” is more like us talking to God and one another about what we are doing or should be doing. It is just not the same thing. I hope we will find this new hymnal very helpful in directing our hymns to God as they should be. I hope we will all be able to participate in the Mass in a deeper and more prayerful way. If anyone is so inclined to donate toward the new hymnal, please let me know. Your generosity is always welcome and appreciated.
Also, please keep in mind that we will be planning to redo the lower level of the church. It has been over twenty years since we last did anything downstairs. We would like to remodel the rooms and update the sound system both downstairs and in the church. We have a good start from our We Give Catholic Tuesday this past November, when we raised a little over $35,000, but we are most likely going to need more funds. This is a good start! Again, I appeal to your great spirit of generosity and love for God and our parish family. Thanks again for your goodness and generosity.
Our Sacred Heart School Open House last Sunday was very well attended. It seemed like there were many new families checking things out for next year. Our principal, Mr. Czaplicki did a great job with the wonderful assistance of the teachers and staff as well as many of the students. There was a great turnout of projects for the Science Fair with a wide variety of topics. The Science Fair encourages students to think and explore topics that they observe in the world. This is the essence of education: teaching students to think and explore the world around them. Thank you to all who made our open house possible and thanks to all you who took the time to stop in and look around. Thanks be to God for such a wonderful place to help our children learn and grow in their love for God and others.