Upcoming Chocolate Festival

10-01-2017Pastor's LetterRev. Gregory B. Wilson, VF

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Almost daily I am renewed in joy because of the generosity and selfless love of the people of this parish. The Bishop asked you to help the victims of hurricane Harvey, and you responded with almost $30,000 in aid. God bless each of you for your generous heart. With the most recent natural disasters – hurricanes Irma and Maria, the earthquakes in Mexico – we may be called upon to help again. In particular, the destruction caused by hurricane Maria to Puerto Rico and the impact of the recent earthquakes have touched the lives of many of our parishioners in a very personal way. Let us be generous in helping as we always have been.

Do you know a teen who is hurting? Is he or she struggling with anxiety, depression, self-injury, suicide, sexual orientation, gender issues or more? These are just a few things that parents, grandparents, and anyone involved in the lives of today's teens face. Internationally known speaker Roy Petitfils seeks to bring solutions for parents, educators, and ministers concerning teen issues. Roy's talk certainly is timely. Join us Monday, October 2, 7-8:30pm in St. Angela Hall.

This Saturday, October 7, from 10am to 3pm is our parish school's primary fundraiser – the 29th Annual Chocolate Festival. The festival is located on the school grounds in and around St. Angela Hall. There is something for everyone of all ages. Enjoy lots of chocolate while you play games, shop at the used book sale, plant sale, vendor booths, silent auction, and bake sale. There will be plenty of food all day, so come hungry and support our wonderful St. Mary's School!

Recently, I was blessed to be on a short pilgrimage to some holy places in Spain and Portugal, ending in Fatima for the 100th anniversary of the apparitions there. Of course, I prayed for each of you at all the holy sites. Most especially, I offered Holy Mass in Fatima for each and every one of our parishioners, all of your families, and your personal intentions. May our Blessed Mother intercede for you in all your trials, leading you ever closer to her Son, Jesus Christ. Fatima in particular is such a special, Holy Spirit-filled place. Every night from May through October they hold a candlelight procession. Our Lady's message is true and simple: Pray. Sacrifice. Do penance. She recommends especially the rosary every day, ultimately a Christ-centered prayer, which St. John Paul II called "the Gospel in miniature." Only great things can come from heeding our Blessed Mother's call.

In Spain there is a special devotion to Mary as Our Lady of Sorrows. In Santiago de Compostela, I offered Mass in the chapel of Nuestra Señora de la Soledad, remembering especially all of our parishioners who have lost a child. Mary knows your sorrow. She prays for you and loves you. Your parish family prays for you and loves you, too.