Notes from Our Pastor

February 23, 2020 

                                         “We adore you, O Lord Jesus Christ,
                                   in this church and all the churches in the world,
                           because by your Holy Cross you have redeemed the world”!


Dear parishioners:
One of the most moving experiences I had when I was privileged to make a pilgrimage to the Holy
Land, was to walk the Via Dolorosa, the Way of Sorrows!
Since the 4th century Christians have walked the streets of Jerusalem following the path that Jesus
took to Calvary. Along the way they paused to reflect on the fourteen stations. Each station a biblical
scene or one passed down by tradition that were part of journey Jesus took on Good Friday. Each
pilgrim pausing to reflect on Jesus’ sacrificial love.
On the day I followed that path in old Jerusalem, it was business usual. People talking and yelling
over the crowd, buying and selling goods, walking through our procession to their own destinations.
I couldn’t help but think, it was like that on that First Good Friday! Business as usual! Just another
common criminal going to his death! Nothing unusual! We know differently! Our salvation was at
hand.
Jesus, suffered and died, laying down His life that we might have eternal Life. What gift to have faith
that “God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son” to suffer and die so that we could be
saved!
It was in the 12th century that St. Francis of Assisi and his followers, helped us realize that we do not
have to make a journey to Jerusalem to reflect on Christ’s sacrificial suffering. The practice of the
stations being depicted in churches and Christians “making” the Stations began! The prayer, “we
adore you O Lord Jesus Christ, in this church and all . . . “ which St. Francis often prayed, has
become the simple prayer which lead us to reflection on each Station. “We adore you O Christ and
we praise you, because by your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world!”
I invite you to join your fellow parishioners on the Friday evenings of Lent to reflect on the great
love that Jesus has for us! Each Friday of Lent we have benediction and Stations at 7pm. Come one
Friday or each Friday of Lent. Come and be part of devotion that has been part of our tradition since
the 4th century!
St. Francis of Assisi,
Pray for us!
Fr. John

 

Febuary 16, 2020

Dear parishioners:
This Tuesday evening many of you will gather to take part in Christ Life: Discovering Christ!
I have been praying that the seven nights of this Lenten journey will be a great blessing to all
who attend and to our parish. We are overwhelmed that so many wished to come. I am sorry that
we had to place some parishioners on a waiting list.

Over two hundred and seventy parishioners registered, which is over the maximum number we
can accommodate, but we are still working to fit everyone in. I ask your prayers that all of us
draw closer to knowing and loving Christ in this upcoming Lenten Season.

February 26th is Ash Wednesday. We will have Masses with the distribution of ashes at
8am, 12:15pm and 6:30pm.

Since many ask, here is a reminder of the regulations for fasting and abstinence in the Season of
Lent.

Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are obligatory days of fasting and abstinence. In addition,
Fridays during Lent are obligatory days of abstinence.

The norms on fasting call on anyone from age 18 to age 59. When fasting, a person is permitted
one full meal as well as two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal. The norms
for abstaining from meat are binding for all those from age 14 onwards. The Church also
suggests that if possible, we fast on Holy Saturday in preparation for the celebration of Easter.

Just a reminder, plan to attend our Ash Wednesday and Friday Fish Frys. And it is not to late too
volunteer to pitch in and help the cause. So many parishioners help, that it is a great way to meet
some of the people you pray with each week.

In Christ,
Fr. John

 

February 9, 2020

Dear parishioners:
This week I share with you a letter that Archbishop Carlson wrote to the priests and deacons of the
archdiocese. It is an important endorsement from all the bishops of the state of Missouri on expanding Medicaid benefits in our state.

Dear Priests and Deacons,
In October of 2019, I joined my brother Catholic bishops of Missouri in issuing a statement of
support for the expansion of MO HealthNet, the Medicaid program in our state. The initiative, which
will appear on the ballot this fall for placement in the Missouri Constitution, will expand affordable
healthcare coverage for the most vulnerable among us.
Recently, questions, concerns and speculation have surfaced regarding an argument that the federal
pro-life protections in Medicaid—secured through the Hyde Amendment more than 40 years ago—
would be terminated, putting government funds at risk for allocation to abortions.
We acknowledge this concern, however, with abiding trust in our Lord Jesus Christ, we cannot
operate out of fear and speculation of the unknown. Our commitment to life is unwavering and lives
are at stake. We must make decisions based on what we currently know to be true:

• With greater access to health insurance through Medicaid, we are saving lives and ensuring
better health outcomes for our families in need.
• The risk for elimination of the Hyde Amendment is unlikely, based on its 40-plus-year
history and polls showing that the majority of Americans oppose public funding of abortion.
• In the unlikely event that the Hyde Amendment is repealed, pro-life states like Missouri
would pursue every legal avenue to prevent public funding for abortion through the state
Medicaid programs.
• Medicaid reimbursements are vital to the healthcare delivery system, ensuring continued care
to the most needy, including care provided by our Catholic hospitals.
• Many of our Catholic hospitals provide services that are left unpaid, putting the future of
those institutions at risk.
The Missouri bishops’ support for this initiative is consistent with our commitment to life. I
encourage you all to read more on the Missouri Catholic Conference website and in the St. Louis
Review.
Please consider our responsibility as Catholics to advocate for decisions that will uphold the dignity
of every human person. Our families depend on decent housing and health care to flourish.
Let us pray to God the Father to continue to guide us in our careful advocacy around legislative
issues that affect the lives of so many of our brothers and sisters. Lord, amid the fear, speculation and
uncertainty that surround us, help us to trust in your perfect plan for what tomorrow will bring.
God bless you all.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson
Archbishop of St. Louis

 

 

 

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