Low Sunday

News 3/14/2023: Episcopal Consecration Announcement

The Bishop’s Note
What a Holy Week we had here at St. Gertrude the Great! It was such a source of joy to see so many devout souls in attendance at the ancient ceremonies. We had bigger crowds than usual. Mr. Lotarski had to print off more Good Friday booklets as people kept coming in one after another. The choir and office staff were most patient in working with their new pastor, and I am both gratified and edified by their good example in that regard. The organ playing (when it was allowed) was terrific and the singing almost heavenly. The sacristy was well organized and even peaceful as everyone worked together to make the sanctuary so beautiful. Our servers did a splendid job. Paddy Omlor, our Master of Ceremonies, could not be present at Holy Week despite wanting to attend so very badly. But our other three MCs stepped up to the plate and ran the ceremonies smoothly and kept a calm air about them. I could not have been more proud of them. Fr. Lehtoranta gets an A+ as the Assistant Priest and the young Fathers acting as Deacon and Subdeacon, too! Thank you, everyone, for such a beautiful and uplifting Holy Week! Surely, Bishop Dolan was praying for us all. Don’t forget to pray for him!

The Easter Week High Masses are always so peaceful and the Gospels and liturgical texts so full of lessons for us. On Wednesday, the joys of Easter were more subdued as we buried Ina Harpen, a longtime parishioner who was most zealous in helping our sacristans over the years. Though there was a tinge of sadness in the air, the thoughts of Easter and the Resurrection were brought more closely to our minds. After all, death is more like a slumber as the body awaits its own resurrection on the last day. For Thy faithful, O Lord, life is not taken away, only changed. In an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, as St. Paul says, our bodies will one day rise again and, if we have been faithful to Our Lord, will share in the bliss of heavenly delights. Oh, may Our Lady and the good St. Joseph grant us perseverance!

Things never really slow down around here anymore, do they?! Our bishop-elect, Fr. Nkamuke, arrives on Saturday and will begin a private retreat in preparation for his consecration on May 1st, the feast of Ss. Philip and James. In the meantime, we have two weddings as well, and then a Pontifical Requiem Mass for Bishop Dolan’s first anniversary of death on the feast of Our Mother of Good Counsel. Bishop da Silva will be visiting us for a few days as well. I am looking forward to hearing his news from the missions. Our Lord always sees us through and supplies the strength to accomplish it all. Deep breaths and one thing at a time (and lots of calm prayer to our Savior, His blessed Mother and St. Joseph), this is how we manage.

Peace be to you! May Our Lord’s wishes for His Apostles become a reality for you as well this Easter season. If you be truly risen with Christ, mind the things that are above!

– Bishop McGuire