4th Sunday of Advent

12-20-2020Letter from the PastorFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Family,

Peace and Joy in Our Lord Jesus!

Today is the 4th Sunday of Advent. Because so many of us will be traveling over Christmas, I want to take this opportunity, on behalf of our parish staff, to wish all of you a Blessed and Merry Christmas!

Over the next few days, we will be wrapping up our Christmas preparations—decorating, buying and wrapping presents, sending cards, and baking. Of course, we must remember the most important preparations of all… spiritual ones.

One thing we could all pray for are the visitors coming to our parish. Each Christmas, our churches are filled with visitors who come to pray before the manger, go to confession, and experience the beauty of the Catholic liturgy. Some of these men and women are not Catholic; others do not practice the faith regularly. Some are estranged from the Church, angry at her  teachings, hurt by her representatives; a larger number simply live their lives as if the Church had no place in their lives, no bearing on their lifestyles, careers, and choices--except at Christmas.

I am also keenly aware that some of these people are in our own families—our parents, our children, our siblings. I think it’s important for us to have some simple messages this Christmas to encourage our loved ones to make this Christmas a  spiritual milestone—a turning point in the ways of faith. Messages like:

  • You are welcome!
  • The Catholic church is here for you.
  • Whatever your circumstances, however much time has passed since your last visit to a church, there is a place for you.
  • If you are feeling afraid or apprehensive, there is no need to be.
  • Our Lord wants you to experience God’s love and His peace. God is extending an invitation to you. You are part of His and our family.
  • The message of Jesus is about the unconditional love of God and His mercy, forgiveness and healing.
  • The Church acknowledges that Catholics may have hurt some people in the past. We are ready to listen to you and your story, and we are very sorry for when and where the harm has been done.
  • God is the most excellent Judge who is merciful and ready to receive all who come to Him with a humble and contrite heart.
  • Our Lord is near to the broken-hearted.

The Christmas Mass schedule for December 24th/25th is as follows: The Masses for December 24th are: 6:30am and 8:30am with Confessions at 8:00am. Later that same day, December 24th, we will celebrate Christmas Eve Masses at 3:00pm, 5:00pm and 11:00pm. Christmas Day, December 25th Masses are at 8:00am, 10:00am and 12:00pm.

Let us pray that this Christmas season will be a time for spiritual renewal for the human family.