Easter V

Note from Father
May, the month of Our Lady, has begun, as well has our daily Marian May Devotions with the school. As is fitting, the Queen of Heaven gets a truly beautiful month to call her own. The flowers are in bloom (including the wonderful lilacs outside my office window), the sun shines warmly, the birds chirp and fix their nests, and the animals roam about our grounds happily. The other day, I even saw a possum just inside the wood line. The cats, for their part, are much more interested in being outside than inside, especially because the bunny population has dramatically increased, and the cats must do their job of trying to ensure the bunnies do not become too comfortable around here.

In preparation for the month of May, we had a wonderful Saturday where the Sodality of Charity came in and did great work around the property here at St. Gertrude’s. First, they helped Sr. Eulalia by cleaning all the candle followers from their usage during Holy Week. Afterwards, they set off outside to test out their little green thumbs. Our young ladies worked hard to clean up and beautify our grotto, the procession pathway with its outdoor stations of the cross, and finally the little garden area outside the priest’s offices, where the girls pulled weeds and laid down fresh mulch. The day was capped off finally with a living Rosary, where different groups of girls brought up and presented fresh flowers to the Blessed Virgin Mary at the start of each decade. Brava, young lassies!!

This upcoming week, we have the Rogation Days on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Each day before our school Mass, we process around the church and the outdoor procession route while chanting the Litany of the Saints. Rogation comes from the Latin verb Rogare, which means “to ask”, and they are days in which we petition heaven for deliverance from calamities and to appease Divine anger. In today’s world, there are many worries from which we must pray to be delivered, and a plethora of offenses for which we can make reparation. If you are able to come for this powerful public prayer, please join us!

The three Rogation Days lead us to Ascension Thursday. This is a Holy Day of Obligation. It is also a good reminder that we are nearing the end of the time during which every Catholic is obliged to make their Easter Duty. The Easter Duty requires every Catholic to make a worthy reception of Holy Communion between Ash Wednesday and Trinity Sunday, which is on May 26th, in order to remain a Catholic in good standing. If you haven’t yet made your Easter Duty, be sure to do so and also avail yourself of the Sacrament of Penance, if necessary, beforehand. There are many opportunities for confessions scheduled during the week. If you need extra time to make a thorough confession, you can also contact the office to schedule a time with one of the priests too.

This weekend, I headed north to St. Hugh’s, with its First Friday and First Saturday ceremonies, as well as the Masses on Sunday. Fr. Simpson left Saturday to begin his journey through our three Texas missions.

– Fr. McKenna