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Lent III

Save these dates for the St. Gertrude the Great Girls’ Camp!
Girls ages 5 – 16+ are welcome to join us on July 11th, 12th and 13th 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, scrapbooking and of course, the popular Ice Cream Social. We’ll also have our second “annual” canoe trip (age appropriate), overnight camping and bonfire again. New activities for this summer include origami, cake decorating, making a personalized Rosary and some surprises! Come join the fun! The cost of this camp is funded by the generous donations of our sponsors.

Bishop’s Corner
I hope you have been enjoying these glorious days of early Spring. I pray, too, that the soul’s Spring has sprung by now for your Lent, and that there is a spring in your step as you go about your days. If so, take your Sunday afternoon drive over to Mt. Adams, and “make the steps” with us. We’ll be praying the Rosary together as we go up, and some of the “Steps of the Passion” by St. Alphonsus. There’s a magnificent view at the top, and we conclude with a visit to Our Lady of Lourdes.

Last weekend was certainly an excellent one for us, despite the severe weather. I was out sick for the Friday evening service, and new Fr. McKenna had gone to Milwaukee, where he was duly impressed with the kind welcome he received from the little flock of St. Hugh. St. Hugh’s pastor, therefore, Fr. McGuire, was “guest preacher” here, and gave the faithful two fine sermons for First Friday, speaking after Stations about the hands. Despite the tornadoes, we had a good and faithful attendance for First Friday “all the way through” First Saturday.

Meanwhile, I was over at my house, praying the angels to come and protect us from tornadoes. I wasn’t the only one. Fr. David Baryj of Santa Clarita, California, is a friend of ours, a semi-invalid (ĭn’və-lĭd) priest who lives his Mass with much suffering from bad health and other crosses. Still, he had heard of our weather, and was inspired to offer his Mass that day for us, with this intention: “For His Excellency’s intentions (as they may be applicable today in this day of storms) and for the safety of the True Blessed Sacrament now and always.” I must say how touched I was to be so remembered. I hope you will remember him in your prayers. We are not alone! Angels and priests and anonymous “pray-ers” keep us protected night and day, as well as our faithful!

We had an excellent attendance last Sunday, and I must tell you of my joy at more answered prayers in seeing dear friends and faithful return to us again for Holy Mass. May we always be the kind of church which edifies by sincere charity, and gives a warm welcome to all, “tout court.”

Last Sunday afternoon a good-sized group enjoyed part one of our first March Movie, “The Tree of the Wooden Clogs.” Thank you to Phyllis Otis for the chili, Gloria and Bithy for the popcorn and pop, and Mark Lotarski for the setup and technical assist. Even though my Lenten Vesper plot fizzled (the dear families were on their third straight day of heavy church) still a few stayed for evening Divine Service and Our Lord’s own blessing to send them on their way.

Fr. McGuire is out in the hinterlands as well as at St. Hugh, generously giving many small groups very much spiritual solace. Fr. McKenna flew back to Boston last week for a quick visit in order to conduct his first funeral, the burial of the faithful man to whom he had given his first Last Rites on the day of his First Mass. If our firsts and lasts are with Jesus and Mary, all will be well. Fr. Larrabee is down in the toe of Texas today, ministering to Laura Rios and her family in Harlingen. He travels through Kentucky on Wednesday with a similar purpose.

I’m sure the children will enjoy Fr. McKenna at Wednesday’s Lenten Retreat. Don’t forgot this annual grace “for the children.” For the Irish (and Irish in spirit), there’s St. Patrick’s special Mass on Saturday morning, and some lovely music with a wee bit of breakfast afterwards.

“God bless ye,” and good St. Joseph guide your ways this week.
–Bishop Dolan