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Lent IV – Laetare Sunday

Trying days these, to be sure. But it’s Lent, and the penances God gives rather than of our own choosing are always more fruitful. Still, so many are left confused, frightened, not knowing what to do except panic… Let us gently remember them, especially the brethren, in our prayers.

In a way, prayers define us at St. Gertrude the Great. To keep us the perfect prayer of the Mass, in all of its solemnity, when so many no longer are able to, is a great grace. An unmerited blessing is this work which has devolved to us. It is surrounded each day by so many of our beloved devotions, especially in Lent, and completed these days of prayer by our daily Vespers. “My soul doth magnify the Lord.” If we are anchored in prayer and spiritual reading, we may still suffer, but we are at peace. Try it. The peace of St. Joseph…

Three so happy days have so far marked our sober Lent. On March 11 we welcomed about fifty children between our own students and our homeschooled children, for the Children’s Day of Recollection. It was a great day, with the participation of the Fathers, and passed quickly. It was nice to see as well “the next crop of children” now nearing First Communion age. The only sadness each year is the absence of the children who need it most, those attending public and Novus Ordo schools. They are also the ones absent more Sundays than not from Catechism and Mass. Whatever are their parents thinking? Pray to the great plague saint Charles Borromeo these days. He also is the patron saint of Sunday Schools and Catechism.

Last week we had Solemn Mass for both St. Patrick and St. Joseph. The beautiful Masses were enhanced with touching, stirring music and drew both of them a nice little group. But others came throughout the morning for Mass. Both days Mark Lotarski provided an elegant reception. We are grateful! Come to weekday Mass. Pray for those who can no longer have Sunday Mass. Show your grateful appreciation by praying for others.

In addition to the plague prayers, the St. Joseph and Lenten devotions, the Mass and Vespers, I am also requesting prayers to St. Charles Borromeo, whom I mentioned above. He is the “go to saint” for plague (and we have a threefold one), for Catechism classes, as well as the patron of seminarians. This is always a worthwhile intention to be sure.

Stay calm this week. Cut out the news. Barely glance at headlines. Read some sensible articles on the internet, which may open your eyes, but most of all read your bulletin, your Lenten devotional, and your Lenten book. Life will look different, I assure you.

Oh, and do come Wednesday for Mass or Adoration. If enough of us would pray before the Blessed Sacrament Exposed, surely God would hear and spare. We have so much to pray for!

Oremus!
– Bishop Dolan