Spring Social 2019
Pope Francis encourages us to try to live one of the principal insights of the Second Vatican Council. He calls it “synodality.” We more often hear it called “collaboration.” It is the opposite of clericalism.
When Pope Francis established synods, e.g. of the family or on youth, he asked the bishops to have listening sessions in their dioceses and to report on their findings, so that when the synod members met in Rome, they had mountains of information that came from the people themselves. This is what he means by synodality: the institutional Church allowing itself to be informed by the people it serves.
Clericalism is a problem that concerns the pope. He even suggests that clericalism is the root cause of the sexual abuse crisis: a priest or bishop who seeks to be served rather than to serve soon decides he has the right to claim money, sex, and other goods for himself and uses his power to hide his misconduct. This can turn into a web of corruption in which the institution puts itself and its reputation at the center of its focus, turning away from Christ in the victim of abuse, whose voice is silenced. The Church becomes haughty and defensive.
The resolution of this problem, Pope Francis suggests, is not simply to reform institutional structures and build in safeguards. Yes, those are important as well, but the real solution is conversion. Conversion happens when, in a time of tribulation, we let down our defenses and accuse ourselves in humility and repentance. We thus open ourselves to the grace that God is offering us to deepen our relationship to Christ in his people. To be converted to Christ the Head is to be converted also to his body.
As a priest who has been involved for many years in the institutional structures of the local Church, I feel I must heed the call of our pope, who is humble enough and prayerful enough to discern this deeper invitation to a life in the service of God’s people.
One means toward this end is to follow Pope Francis’ lead by having more listening sessions, more dialogue with the people of the parish. I am working with the parish staff to plan some opportunities for group dialogue—our own little synod, you might say—beginning this summer. More information will be forthcoming.
~ Fr. Frank Coady
2nd Grade Parent Meeting
February 27, 2019
during all sessions (4:10; 5:30; 7:00 p.m.)
Daily Mass Chapel
Information on First Communion will be presented.
Childcare is available.
In 1970, Stevie Wonder released his hit song “Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I’m Yours!” In a fun and interesting way, this song title embodies the spirit of our 3 sacraments of initiation into the Roman Catholic Faith Tradition: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist.
Signed = Baptism. We are signed with water to wash away sin. We state (or infants’ parents state) our baptismal promises, which we renew each time we sign ourselves in the baptismal font as we enter the church. (Did you know that?)
Sealed = Confirmation. We are anointed with Chrism oil to seal us with the Holy Spirit. This flows directly from our baptism and leads directly to…
Delivered = Eucharist. We are fed by the Eucharist to become a living member of the body of Christ. The sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation are completed in the Eucharist.
I’m Yours! = Jesus, my heart belongs to you, make me a vessel of your peace!
Next Sunday, February 17, Bishop Vincke will confirm 37 of our young adults at the 5:30 Mass. Let us unite our voices in praise: Signed, Sealed, Delivered, WE’RE YOURS!
~ Rick Smith, Youth Minister
If you need childcare, please provide names and ages of the children.
When I took this job, I knew that it was going to be challenging, but not impossible. It has been slightly overwhelming for me, as I’m still in the process of learning more about my job. With that being said, last week I had my first task as a Religious Education Coordinator. We celebrated our 2nd graders’ Sacrament of Reconciliation. That was a pretty hectic week, considering the fact that we had to cancel Wednesday night Religious Education due to weather! And I still had many things to do to get ready for this special event. But I knew for a fact that I wasn’t going to do it alone. I work with an amazing team that helped me all the way. At the end, it was so great and exciting to see the children and their parents’ faces.
What I am trying to say here is that no matter how hard or difficult things are for you, you’re never alone. If God has a plan for you and challenges you, it is because He knows that you are very capable to get it done.
~ Josefina Gantt, K-6 Coordinator
We are now into the full swing of Ordinary Time during winter. It will be quite lengthy, seven Sundays, because of the late date of Easter. Our focus is on the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry and mission and our call to follow his teachings and live our Christian lives by his example.
In the Second Readings on these Sundays, we hear from St. Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians. He preaches about Christ dying for our sins and the grace we receive from God. This weekend, on Saturday morning, 40 or so of our 2nd graders and young people will have experienced their First Reconciliation. They will confess their sins and receive the healing grace of the sacrament. They will be assured of the Lord’s compassion for them and his mercy. This sacrament is so beautiful! May we all be inspired by these children to experience this sacrament for ourselves and allow God’s grace to wash over and cleanse our own lives.
This Sunday is also the first day of Catholic Schools Week. We are pleased to have the 5th graders from Manhattan Catholic Schools lead the music at 10:30 Mass. We are also pleased to welcome all the students, teachers, staff, and parents to celebrate Mass with Bishop Vincke here this Tuesday! We are grateful that our kind and compassionate shepherd is coming. What a blessing it is to have such a wonderful, Christ-centered, Catholic school in our Manhattan community! Let us continue to offer them our financial support, time, talent, and prayers.
~ Kelley Smith, Music Liturgist