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December 2018 Weekly Bulletin Messages


December 30, 2018 – The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary & Joseph

Dear Friends,

As 2018 comes to a close and we begin 2019, I want to wish everyone a very happy and blessed New Year! We entrust everything of this last year – all of its joys and sorrows – to God’s divine providence, and look forward to the often mysterious ways in which God will work in this next year.

On New Year’s Eve, there will be Eucharistic Adoration at Holy Rosary Church, from 6:00 PM until Midnight (with Benediction at Midnight). All are warmly invited to stop by to offer a prayer as we ring in the New Year!

This Tuesday, January 1st, is a Holy Day of Obligation, in which we celebrate the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God. In his homily last year, Pope Francis said: “In his Mother, the God of heaven, the infinite God, made himself small, he became matter, not only to be with us but also to be like us. This is the miracle, the great novelty!” Mass times for this beautiful Solemnity are as follows:

  Dec 31: 4:30 PM Mass at Three Holy Women – Holy Rosary
  Dec 31: 4:30 PM Mass at Old Saint Mary
  Jan 01: 9:30 AM Mass at Saints Peter and Paul

Know of my love and prayers always!

In Christ,
Fr John

December 23, 2018 – Fourth Sunday of Advent


It seems we need Christmas more than ever.

In a world of worry, Christ brings relief.

In a world of fear, Christ brings courage.

In a world of violence, Christ brings peace.

In a world of poverty, Christ brings richness.

In a world of grief, Christ brings healing.

In a world of grudges, Christ brings forgiveness.

In a world of despair, Christ brings hope.

In a world of hate, Christ brings love.

In our parish, may we always bear Christ in our hearts,
for by inviting Christ into our hearts, we receive relief, courage, peace, richness, healing, forgiveness, hope, love.

In the gift of Christ, we receive


Know of our prayers and blessings, and gratitude for being your parish priests!

Fr. Tim and Fr. John

Many thanks and blessings to our awesome staff, Councils, trustees, committees, commissions, societies,
and all our wonderful volunteers and generous benefactors!

December 16, 2018 – Third Sunday of Advent

Dear Friends in Christ,

Rejoice, y’all! In the closing lines of his Letter to the Philippians, Saint Paul writes:
“Rejoice (Gaudete) in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! Your kindness should be known to all. The Lord is near” (Phil 4:5-6). The Third Sunday of Advent that we celebrate this weekend is sometimes known as “Gaudete Sunday”, which takes its name from the Scripture verse above. Rejoice! Paul is writing to the whole Christian community in Philippi, not just an individual, and so his command to rejoice is written in the 2nd person plural: “rejoice, y’all!”. In reflecting on this, I couldn’t help but be grateful for this Christian community that is the Family of Four Parishes. Thanks for being the wonderful people that you are and know that so many of my daily joys these past few months have come from my being a part of this community.

In these last days of Advent, in which many of us will put up manger scenes and make final preparations for Christmas, I share with you these words from Pope Benedict XVI: “This, dear friends, is what true joy consists in: it is feeling that our personal and community existence has been visited and filled by a great mystery, the mystery of God’s love. In order to rejoice we do not need things alone, but love and truth: we need a close God who warms our hearts and responds to our deepest expectations. This God is manifested in Jesus, born of the Virgin Mary. Therefore that ‘Baby Jesus’ which we place in a stable or a grotto is the center of all things, the heart of the world” (Angelus, Dec 13, 2009).

Rejoice, y’all! And thanks, y’all!

With love and prayers,
Fr. John

December 9, 2018 – Second Sunday of Advent

“My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope that I have that desire in all that I am doing.”
(Thomas Merton, Thoughts in Solitude. December 10 is the 50th Anniversary of the death of this great spiritual master.)

Dear Friends,

As we continue the Advent journey, we are given help this Sunday by three figures in Scripture, Baruch the prophet, Paul the apostle, and John the Baptist, in addition to Thomas Merton, to help us to navigate a way of being that leads to God and deeper personal happiness and holiness.

It is the beckon call to move past our egos, to “get over ourselves.” It is the beckon call to absolutely trust in God alone! Despite our persistent desire to be in control, God knows what is best, and like Christ, we are to surrender to a plan which is rooted in the heart of a God who creates, redeems, sustains, in ways we could not possibly imagine or work out.

So this Advent we trust, get over ourselves, and pray to not get too much in the way of the Love whose name is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!

Sincerely with love,
Fr. Tim

December 2, 2018 – First Sunday of Advent

Dear Friends,

Happy First Sunday of Advent! The word “Advent” itself speaks beautifully to what we celebrate in this season. “Advent” is formed by two Latin words: the preposition “ad”, meaning to/towards, and the verb “venire”, meaning to come. In other words, in this season we prepare our hearts “to/towards” the “coming” (of Jesus at Christmas, but also the second coming).

I invite you to consider the following opportunities in our parishes to prepare your hearts for the coming of our Lord at Christmas:
– Make a Confession: a Communal Reconciliation Service with opportunities for individual confessions will be held on Saturday December 15th at 10 AM at Saints Peter and Paul.
– Advent Giving Tree: tags are available on the trees in Church to purchase items for families in need. Please kindly return all items the weekend of December 15/16, and thanks very much in advance for your generosity!
– Serve the poor and homeless: particularly with the cold weather, a gift of time or money means so much at this time of the year.

Finally, enclosed in today’s bulletin is a summary of the common themes from our listening sessions addressing the clergy sexual abuse crisis. A copy of this summary was mailed to Archbishop Listecki this week. Many thanks to all who shared! The parish staff, Fr Tim, and I will be discussing next steps that we as a parish will be offering, as we search for healing and work to ensure that these crimes never happen again.

Love, prayers, and thanks for all that you are and do!

In Christ,
Fr John