The Saints Are Cheering Us On

The Men's Club Golf Outing is next Saturday, August 24th. 

Golf is followed by an after-party in the parish courtyard. 

Thanks to all who organized the event!  

 

Letters from a Pastor to His People- August 18, 2019

Dear Parishioners,

Christ set the world on fire 2,000 years ago and it has been burning ever since.  The fire has been kept alive by the holy women and women who have lived the faith, in particular the saints.  And so it is the communion of saints that I want to focus on in this letter.

"Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses," says the Letter to the Hebrews, "let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus" (Hebrews 12:10). 

The "cloud of witnesses" is another way of saying "communion of saints." We are surrounded by the saints, and the saints are cheering us on, hoping that we will persevere in running the race and become saints ourselves. 

We think sometimes our holiness is contingent only upon our own abilities, and that whether or not we become holy affects only us.  If I sin, well, then, it's because I'm weak and I'll be the one to suffer and go to hell.  That's what we think.  But it's not accurate.  This is a "team sport." If we sin, it hurts the whole team—the cloud of witnesses.  That, by the way, is why we go to confession in front of a priest.  We do not live in isolation.

Being part of a team, I would argue, makes you try harder.  You know if you fail, you won't just be letting yourself down, but others as well.  We should strive to be holy because it will help our "team": the people in our lives, our society, and the Church. 

The beauty of being part of a team is that our teammates help us.  The saints are helping us become holy.  In fact, they're doing most of the work for us in heaven—praying for us. 

August is a great month of saints.  Pope Saint Pius X is August 21st.  He loved the priesthood, and St. John Vianney, the patron saint of priests, we celebrate on August 4th.  Vianney's hero was St. Philomena, and her feast is August 11th.  St. Clare is also August 11th.  Clare was inspired by St. Augustine, whose feast is August 28th.  Augustine's mother, St. Monica, celebrates her feast August 29th. We have St. John the Baptist, who was beheaded (August 29th), St. Lawrence, who was grilled alive (August 10) and St. Bartholomew, who was skinned alive (August 24th). St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, or Edith Stein, who was martyred by the Nazis at Auschwitz (August 9), as was St. Maximilian Kolbe (August 14). Saint Bernard of Clairvaux's feast is August 20th.  He had a great devotion to the Blessed Mother, and we celebrate her Assumption on August 15th.

These saints are cheering us on, hoping that we'll finish our leg of the race and join them.

Stop by the Edison Park Fest this weekend (August 17-18) from 10am-2pm to check out the St. Juliana table! 

School starts this Tuesday, August 20th.  My prayers for our teachers, students and families.  Thank you, Mrs. Marshall and her team, for all your hard work planning.  We are particularly excited for our new STEAM curriculum to go along with the amazing lab.

We are still looking for auction items for this year's Gala (September 14).  If you have anything we could use (sports tickets, gift cards, gift baskets, new items, etc.), please let me know.  We're hoping this year's gala will be as successful as last's!  Thank you so much.

 

Yours in Christ,

Fr. James

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