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The Holy Family

Fr. Cekada announces the schedule of movable feasts, on Epiphany, 2017.

Our grounds, beautifully lit for Midnight Mass.

Bp. Dolan offers a quiet Low Mass, on the feast of St. John.


Daily Sermons
December 29 – Fr. McGuire – A Saint of Little Things
January 3 – Fr. Lehtoranta – The Start of the School and of Good Life
January 4 – Fr. Lehtoranta – Jesus and the Martyrs
January 5 – Fr. Lehtoranta – St. Joseph and Doing the Will of God
January 6 – Fr. Eldracher – The Example of the Three Kings

✠ The Bishop’s Corner ✠
Another topsy-turvy week, for those who follow weather or politics. My sterile Dogwood budded out the other day, and then “they” called for snow. The cats were confused, but soldiered on through the cold. I think they enjoyed it. The coyotes cry at night, but the cats are prudent, reposing under a porch or on the roof. In politics, Russia was the bad guy, said the Fatima Industry and POTUS. “Not so quick,” responded the populist president elect. In any case, it is always the way of empires. God help those who are crushed in the maws of either, America or Russia. Tens of thousands of people in the Middle East died or were driven out, and pretty near all of the Christians there. What are you going to do? Nothing but change and contradictions all about us! Well, you need an anchor, and as a Catholic, you have a good heavy one, with two prongs.

We have the never changing Catholic Faith and morals, and the always changing liturgical year, with its serene succession of feasts and seasons. This is enough to anchor every Catholic heart. In a changing world know the Church year and live it. As Fr. McGuire wisely wrote in a recent St. Hugh Bulletin:

The Heart of the Matter
If we let the liturgy mold us, forming our days and weeks and years, not dragging it into the turmoil of our superficial emotions, but letting it, gently and firmly, draw us into its own rhythm, then we will find in it a true school of Christian living, a source of wisdom and inspiration, and more and more we shall find that it is not just an interruption of the day, but its very heart.

In addition, the Liturgical Year not only honors the mysteries of Christ’s life but reproduces them in the Church, and souls. Each feast, each season has its own graces. This is how we Catholics are meant to tell time, and tame time. This frees us from the tyranny of “keeping up with the times,” which is the drearest slavery, whether it be fashions or Facebook or weather predictions or politics.

Fr. McKenna is with us for a few extra days, having exhaustively tramped through the frozen north. It is now Fr. McGuire’s turn for the missions. He has two visits to Illinois scheduled, and some extra work in Milwaukee on the docket. Down in southern Illinois, there’s a family which kept the old faith and away from the new, like the Japanese of old, without a priest, for many years. Pray for a fruitful visit.

We are happy to welcome our newest priest, Fr. Eldracher, who celebrated the Epiphany Solemn Mass and is preaching for us again this morning. Father is the happy fruit of a union occasioned by our YAG or St. Raphael’s Singles Group here at St. Gertrude long ago, so we are especially happy to have him visit. He was ordained by Bishop Sanborn in Florida on June 29, and is currently assigned to the seminary.

I wish to thank everyone who came and helped for the great Epiphany feast, the exquisite Mass, the excellent parish dinner, and the All Night Adoration as well. A fine Twelfth Night and an excellent Epiphany weekend. Our thanks in addition to all of you who come and pray, and contribute and give a hand and help us all year ’round. The Holy Child reward you!

I wish to thank Les Pomerville for all of his organ playing the past several years. It is a great love of his life, but old age and illness make him very reluctantly retire. We send him our gratitude and good wishes.

Angela Segrist seems to be lost, as we cannot get in touch with her for a visit. Ask St. Anthony to find her. Please remember all of our shut in, as we do not wish a single one of them to be forgotten. I did forget to have you pray for Barb Steinmetz last Sunday, but I know you will remember her, and all of our recently departed. Barb’s funeral was a beautiful one, so quiet, so silent in the Christmas sunshine, stately and solemn as a Requiem should be.

Today we honor the Holy Family. Be sure to take a blessed Epiphany pack home and put the blessing over your door, and upon your family. Pray for your children. Consecrate them, each one by name today, to the Holy Family. Pray for our fallen away, and for those parents who think they can do without God, pretty much or mostly. They can’t. Bring them back; Jesus, Mary, Joseph! Protect the children.

—Bishop Dolan