This weekend the Church celebrates the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. This solemnity marks the end of the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy as Pope Francis closes the holy door of Saint Peter’s Basilica. This past week, the holy doors in the other basilicas in Rome, cathedral churches, and other churches throughout the world have been closed until the next Jubilee Year. Hopefully, all of us have gained a greater appreciation of God’s mercy in our lives and have resolved to be the face of God’s mercy throughout the rest of our lives. This week, let us ask ourselves: How can I best continue to proclaim and live out this positive and joyful message of God’s mercy in the days, months, and years ahead? This Sunday and the weekdays ahead mark the end of the Liturgical Year. In today’s Gospel passage, we hear the words of the repentant thief, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” In his great mercy, Jesus says, “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” How many times do we say to Jesus, “Remember me when…”or “Be with me when…” in whatever situation we may find ourselves (illness, times of testing or misfortune, times of doubt and struggle, etc.)? Have we heard him say, “I will be with you?” If we remain true to him daily, when we meet him at the end of our lives, he will say, “Today you will be with me in Paradise.” When he comes at the end of time, he will say the same thing to all who have kept his word, and lived lives of faithful discipleship.
This weekend, our annual Catholic Campaign for Human Development takes place. The funds received benefit communities living in poverty, those living on the margins of society, and those healing from the wounds of crime and violence across the United States. Please see the special insert in today’s bulletin. If you forgot your envelope, there are extras at the Church entrances. Please try to have your donation in by next Sunday.
Our Thanksgiving Liturgy will take place at 6:30 PM on the eve of Thanksgiving, Wednesday, November 23. I do hope you are planning on being present. Just a reminder: please remember to bring items for our Food Pantry to Church that evening. There will be no morning Mass on Wednesday this week.
Advent begins next Sunday so please remember to be at church 15 minutes before Mass begins when we will have a special time of reflection each Sunday of Advent. The parish Worship Commission requested this extra time to for us to enter the Season of Advent. Members are preparing some short reflections with some reflection questions that follow. Liturgical Ministers are asked to be present and signed in 20 minutes before Mass begins so that the time of reflection and silence won’t be interrupted by sacristans trying to make sure that all is in place for Mass.
Blessings on your week!
Sister Chris Gretka, CSJ