Pentecost III

Note from the Bishop
As I write these lines to you on a sunny Thursday afternoon, I find myself contemplating the boundless goodness of the Sacred Heart to us, His followers. We call ourselves His followers, but still quite often find that we wander a bit. But isn’t that what is so beautifully encouraging about His goodness—as soon as we begin to wander He comes chasing after us, bestowing His choicest gifts upon us. I can’t help but think of the words of the Psalms: “Cast thy care upon the Lord and He will sustain thee.” How often we wander, and then are brought back by our Good Shepherd; then, lest we wander again, we place our confidence in the Lord and He grants such immense graces to us to help us to stay on the right path.

This past weekend I was in the Seattle area with Fr. Ercoli. I have known him since my early seminary years (about twenty-two years now); he was even one of my seminary professors. For a time, he and I worked together at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church in Fraser, Michigan. I now regard him as a very good friend, most especially after the support he has given us since the death of our beloved Bishop Dolan. Father, with the help of Fr. Hector Romero, takes care of two chapels: Holy Redeemer just outside Seattle, and St. Joseph’s—an old church in Mount Vernon, Washington. As I mentioned last week, I administered fifty-five Confirmations and three First Holy Communions. I think it was a good “shot in the arm” for all of us—such a happy and grace-filled time.

Meanwhile, in Canada, our zealous Bishop da Silva gave First Holy Communion to a little girl, gave Minor Orders to two men, and confirmed one hundred new Soldiers of Christ. One confirmand tweeted: “Deo Gratias! I received conditional Confirmation tonight from Bishop da Silva, who travelled from Brazil to Canada for us. Knowing he was consecrated by Bishop Dolan is a great joy.” Truly, these are joyous occasions. The Army of Christ is growing! Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy Kingdom come!

Fr. McKenna has been busy in his missionary work as well. In his last two trips he baptized two babies. He is also getting things ready for my July visit to St. Hugh of Lincoln to do Confirmations; and later in the summer for his other mission in North Dakota and perhaps Dallas. This weekend, however, he is in Boston at his old Sacred Heart Church on a two-fold mission: offering Mass for those in need; then he will visit his grandfather who is very ill and nearing death. Please pray that Mr. McKenna receive the sacraments before death and that he be given the great grace of final perseverance.

Fr. Lehtoranta is now finishing his vocations retreat for young ladies wishing to be oblates. The goal of the oblate is to assist the priests in their work. Some will be involved in catechizing, others in teaching in school, sacristy work, basically whatever is needed to assist the priests in saving souls. It isn’t the same as most religious congregations which have their own separate way of life or are cloistered in the convent walls. The oblate works among the clergy and the people—it is an active apostolate, given over to acts of charity and of religion. Of course, they will have their own prayer life, so important for those who give themselves to active works. Pray for the success of this much-needed apostolate.

I hope you all enjoyed the parish bonfire and cookout. It is a big production, but one which is so good for all of us in so many ways. We could do without the chiggers though. This year we sprayed not once, but twice to keep them away. I hope it worked.

Once again, I send you a blessing and my promise to pray for each of you and your intentions.

– Bishop McGuire