Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
"The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert, and He remained in the desert for forty days, tempted by Satan." – St. Mark 1:12-13
We have entered once again into the desert of Lent with Christ. This Lent can be the one that transforms you like no other, if you are willing to open up your heart and allow Christ inside. You have nothing to lose… and literally everything togain.
Here at the kickoff of Lent we have a special Parish Mission with nationally-acclaimed director, Fr. Bill Casey of the Fathers of Mercy. The Fathers of Mercy have been preaching Roman Catholic missions since 1808. During a mission, the people of the parish gather each evening for a series of conferences on the fundamental truths of the Catholic Faith, including the Ten Commandments, the Real Presence of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, devotion to our Blessed Mother, and the forgiveness of sins in the Sacrament of Penance. If your heart is receptive, Fr. Casey will help you grow deeper in love with Our Lord.
Join us each night, Monday through Thursday (Feb. 19-22) beginning with Mass at 5:30pm in Old St. Mary's followed by confessions. After Mass enjoy refreshments next door in Smith Hall. Mission talks begin at 6:30pm in Old St. Mary's. What a marvelous way to start your Lent!
I invite you to stop by the rose garden on the north side of the church after Mass and see the beautiful new mosaic of Our Lady of Guadalupe, which is now finished. This spectacular mosaic was carefully crafted by our own parishioner, Alice Judd, over a period of eighteen months. Our Lady of Guadalupe was chosen since she is both the Patroness of all the Americas and of the Unborn. This 1531 appearance of the Blessed Virgin Mary to the 57-year-old widower, St. Juan Diego, was the first apparition of Our Lady in the New World. After her appearance, the Aztec people ceased the practice of human sacrifice and upwards of nine million were baptized over the follow years. We can use such fervent faith in ourday.
Mark your calendar for Holy Mass on March 25 at 11:00am. Bishop Robert Guglielmone will visit to celebrate Palm Sunday with us. After Mass, Bishop Guglielmone will bless the mosaic. (March 25th is, in normal years, the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord, a very appropriate day to bless ourstunning new mosaic.)
Another Lenten staple is the Stations of the Cross. Public celebration of the Stations of the Cross will be Fridays of Lent in Old St. Mary's: 6pm in English; 7:00pm in Spanish; and Mondays of Lent at 11am in English. Of course, you may pray the Stations anytime privately. Booklets are provided for bothpublic and private use.
"Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides" (Matt 6:33).