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Epiphany II

Bishop’s Corner
Epiphany, the day of the Kings and feast of gifts, fell this year on a mild and bright First Friday. Fr. Lehtoranta’s First Solemn High Mass in the evening, offered for our church workers and helpers and benefactors, drew an unusually large congregation. What a beautiful gift to the Sacred Heart! The music, the lights, the solemn ceremonies, all contributed to a memorable Epiphany, truly the high point of our Christmas. The new priest’s sermon favorably impressed everyone.

After Mass, many of you came to the candlelight dinner buffet, prepared and served by Mark Lotarski. Helfta Hall was full for the celebration. Meanwhile, Our Lord in the Monstrance was adored by visitors and the faithful men of the Guard of Honor, whose vigilance continued throughout the night. Christmas has gone to its quiet setting now, still observed in church and in prayers, its lessons soaking into the soul. Soon Candlemas will come to close the forty days, and point to the other forty which wait to launch us on our career of penance. Soon enough.

Our seminarians have returned to their studies. This Sunday I am with them, beginning their annual five-day retreat. The theme of the retreat is the Holy Ghost, Whom I ask you to invoke on our behalf.

Caravaggio had been acting so strangely over Christmas that I wondered if he would have to go to a cat counselor, until I discovered he had worms, so he went to the vet instead. They come of eating rodents, I am told, but I am afraid the cats are not to be dissuaded from one of the chief perks of feline life. Still, they are generous. On Epiphany, Caravaggio arrived, Magi-like, with his gift: a large dead brown mouse in his mouth, which he deposited outside my office door. Unusually talkative, the cat seemed to be saying that this gift was not nothing, and should be properly acknowledged!

So, thank you, Caravaggio, and thank you, all of our non-feline faithful as well, for all you did for Christmas, your gifts and cards, your donations and labors. They are, indeed, “not nothing,” but show great generosity and devotion. God reward you all through this New Year, and all of eternity.

May our Lady of Prompt Succor speedily answer all of your prayers.

–Bishop Dolan