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Easter V

It’s almost time for the St. Gertrude the Great Girls’ Camp! Girls ages 5-16+ are welcome to join us on July 6, 7, and 8th for three days of fun and spiritual activities. We will be joined by three sisters of St. Thomas Aquinas for days filled with camp favorites such as archery, scrap-booking and of course, the popular Ice Cream Social.

This year we’ll also be adding new activities such as candy making, a canoe trip (age appropriate), overnight camping (age appropriate too!) and bonfire, as well as an elegant Little Girls’ Tea Party. Come join the fun!

Please call the office for further details and to register. The cost of this camp is funded by the donations of our generous sponsors.

Bishop’s Corner
Our world names this weekend as Memorial Day, the secular start of Summer. Schools are closed, or almost, and picnics are planned, should the rains hold off. In church we call today Rogation Sunday, the first day in a solid week of prayer (and thus of penance) which carries us from Mary’s month to June. The month of the Sacred Heart opens this year with His Triumph, as the Man God with His Human Heart, sacred and divine, ascends into Heaven and is enthroned at the Father’s right hand. There He is “ever living to make intercession for us.” Can we Christians, whose life is Christ, do any less? Here we have our plan for this supreme week of prayer.

Monday’s Memorial Day began as a remembrance of Civil War soldiers, and then of all our military dead in all of our wars, and then grew graciously into a kind of Spring All Souls Day, a day to remember our dead, decorate their graves, and pray for their souls.

This year Memorial Day falls on the first Rogation Day. It is not a parade but a procession which interests us, a penitential procession to pray for all of our needs in the Holy Ghost’s spirit of Piety, a great virtue and one of His seven gifts. Thus it is that we process and pray for all of our needs these three Rogation Days. We pray for good weather, for peace, for the safe return of our troops, for the Church and for our country, for our sick and our faithful departed.

I say it is Piety which promotes such prayer. Rogation Sunday prepares us for it, but cannot entirely take its place. By Piety we reverently acknowledge our indebtedness to God, to Church and to our country. By Piety we remember and honor the deaths of so many soldiers in so many wars. By Piety we pray for an end to the endless wars which sap our strength and are a scourge from God, “a punishment for sins,” Our Lady says. By Piety we show our concern for all of our fellow men, especially in this land, now suffering from flood, earthquake, and especially tornado, as well as drought or excessive rain. By Piety we pray to avert the anger of God, justly merited for the many sins of our Godless age.

Who would think that a procession and a Mass would mean so much? May I ask you to give of your holiday morning, your Monday (or Tuesday or Wednesday) morning for this great purpose, for Piety? In any case, remember that Justice joins Piety in calling you to Mass for Ascension Thursday, the Holy Day.

Next comes First Friday of the Sacred Heart’s own month of June, and our all night watch before His Eucharistic Heart. We begin as well our Pentecost Novena on Friday, to prepare our hearts for the Holy Ghost. Finally we end this week of prayer with Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart, with reparation and thanksgiving. I thank God for giving us, in His goodness, weeks such as these, and for giving us good souls to keep this week as another Holy Week, for so it is. God bless you for your Piety!

Piety as well as all seven gifts of the Paraclete were bestowed upon seven confirmands last Sunday at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Spokane, Washington. I thank Fr. Kevin Vaillancourt and his flock for their hospitable welcome, and Fr. Kascik for his kind assistance at the altar. Last Monday’s storms delayed my return until Tuesday, making it quite a long trip, although a very worthwhile one.

May Our Lady these days renew in us, her children and servants, the Holy Spirit’s Sevenfold gift, and make us excel in that Piety which will change us into strong Catholics and perfect patriots.
–Bishop Dolan