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Pentecost XII

Also the week: Listen to Fr. Cekada’s short, but interesting sermon about “The Vigil of Assumption of the Blessed Mother”

From Fr. Cekada
Since Bishop Dolan will be in France until Tuesday, I’ve been asked to fill in for him in this space.

There were sudden deaths to mourn this past week. Shirle Downing died unexpectedly last Sunday. Fortunately I was able to give her the Last Rites several weeks before, and the Fathers were able to bring her Holy Communion a number of times since then. Alas, she had not made arrangements to be buried from St. Gertrude’s, so the lawyer who managed to have himself appointed her “guardian” (for a fat price, no doubt!) arranged a short wake for her, topped off with a blessing from a Novus Ordo priest. Those of us who knew Shirle well can easily imagine the memorable welcome she would have given such a clergyman! And as for the lawyer, I’m dedicating a special poem to him, (click “Download the Bulletin”), he has shown himself to be worthy of his patron!

The story is another reminder of the need to make detailed and explicit arrangements for one’s funeral, and entrust the task to someone whom you can trust completely. When Bishop Dolan returns, we will schedule a proper Requiem for Shirle. She has been a long time and faithful parishioner of St. Gertrude’s. Please keep her in your prayers.

We also offer our condolences to our faithful maintenance worker Dale Moore and his family on the occasion of the death of Dale’s father, Dale Eugene Moore. Please be assured of our prayers!

Attendance at our Fatima Rosary Procession this past Monday was excellent – 53 souls! And as a special bonus, it appears that, since last month’s procession, the geese have overcome their digestive problems.

The congregational singing at the summer High Masses has been inspiring. Keep up the excellent work.

Work on the cloister has been proceeding apace. We’ve also settled the matter of the lettering for our new sign out front; one of our talented woodworkers, Jim Soli, will be carving them.

Seminarian Robert von Berg and his brother joined us for a few days this week. Robert served as Subdeacon at Solemn Mass on the Assumption, and he and his brother helped Katie do some major reorganizing in our sacristy storage areas. We also had some help along those lines the previous week from some members of the Kamphaus family.

Our celebration of the Feast of the Assumption here was magnificent, thanks to the help and enthusiasm of our volunteers. The shrine and tomb of Our Lady were splendid, as were the floral arrangements. Our children’s choir was angelic for the Ordinary, Propers and motets, and our student organist offered two nicely-crafted short improvisations. (I always notice the details of the music!) The serving was perfectly Gertrudian – which is to say, perfect. The Rosary Confraternity was out in full force for the Rosary and the Blessing of First Fruits at the grotto, and the excellent attendance made for an impressive Procession. God bless all of you for your zeal in honoring our Queen Assumed into Heaven.

I myself am in Milwaukee this Sunday at St. Hugh of Lincoln, our church on the South Side. The attendance at St. Hugh’s has been particularly good of late, and our priests serve several missions in Wisconsin, Illinois and North Dakota from there.

Next Sunday Bishop Dolan will probably give you a report of his visit to France. In the meantime, pray that his journey back is a safe one.

— Father Cekada

Mass Location Update
If you are traveling in Connecticut or Rhode Island this summer, visit the new St. Vincent Ferrer chapel, where new Fr. Stephen McKenna offers Mass every Sunday at 5 PM.

Also, consult our extensive list of recommended Mass centers when you are traveling this summer.