Memorial Day Mass at Calvary Cemetery

As Jesus said “No one has greater love than this, than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

Monday is Memorial Day and this is a big day for our country.  As Catholics we recognize the value of honoring the dead and we pray for them as well.  Let’s use this great day as a reminder to be grateful for those who have died in service to our country and also as a time to remember how important it is to pray for the dead.

I think it important that we pray together that day and, weather permitting, I am going to pray mass at the Sacred Heart Cemetery on Memorial day at 8am.  If you would like to come pray with me, bring a lawn chair or something to sit on and we will pray mass together back by the crucifix in the back of the cemetery.  If it is raining at 7am, then count on us NOT praying mass at 8 and I invite you to pray a Rosary for our dead.

May God bless our Memorial Day with a great gratitude for all those who died in service and defense of our country.

 

Prayer for Memorial Day

God of power and mercy,

you destroy war and put down earthly pride.

Banish violence from our midst and wipe away our tears,

that we may all deserve to be called your sons and daughters

Keep in your mercy those men and women

who have died in the cause of freedom

and bring them safely

into your kingdom of justice and peace.

We ask this though Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, May 20 2018

Why do we say things that hurt?

There is a book called The Warm and Fuzzy Tale where every person in the village owned a special bag.  It was given to them by their parents. Inside this bag were hundreds of warm fuzzies. When you gave someone a warm fuzzy, they felt warm and fuzzy inside.  People in the village gave each other warm fuzzies anytime they wanted to let someone know they were loved.

One day, an evil sorceress came to town.  She saw that everyone was giving out these warm fuzzies from their bags and she didn’t like it.  She went up to one villager and said, “Why do you keep giving away your warm fuzzies?  Aren’t you afraid you’re going to run out?  Here, take this bag of cold pricklies and give these to the people in your village instead, and keep all your warm fuzzies for yourself.”  The next time he ran into a friend, he handed him one of the cold pricklies from his new bag. A cold prickly made someone feel cold and prickly inside.  Once you had a cold prickly, you wanted to give it away to someone else as fast as possible.

The main idea is that what we say and how we say it, is contagious. I think about why kids can say hurtful things to each other. Just be nice. It seems so simple but as they are growing and developing it is not always easy to be nice. Some people are just naturally more aggressive and some are more negative in general. That is okay, we all struggle with something. The answer is to create an environment where we identify kind and unkind words.

We have been letting our friends know when their words are warm and fuzzy or cold and prickly. It works great because it gently guides. The kids who have been on the prickly end, have just the right words to say how they felt. Let’s practice using our words to make the day better. It’s contagious.

God Bless,

Anne Atkin, principal

 

Deacon Bulletin Article, May 20 2018

Over the last two weeks, we talked about Pope Francis telling Emanuele “God is the one who decides who goes to Heaven.”  The reality of death reminders us our days on earth are numbered.  Therefore, we should strive to make the best of our time here using our God-Given gifts to do His will and receive His grace.  To die in the grace of God is called a Good Death.  The surest way to die a Good Death is to live a good Christian life so God, in His mercy, may judge us worthy of entering His Kingdom.

When we die, our soul leaves the body and is judged immediately by God.  At death, the possibility of merit, demerit, or conversion ceases.  The soul will go directly to Heaven, Hell, or Purgatory.  This is called the “Particular Judgement”.  Our soul is reunited with our body during the “Final Judgement” when Christ returns at the end of time.  (More on Final Judgement and Hell next week.)

Purgatory comes from the Latin word purgare, meaning “to purify.”  Our belief in the soul needing purification after death to enter Heaven is rooted in ancient Jewish thought and strongly implied in Scripture.   Purgatory has been part of Sacred Tradition since the Church’s beginning.  Evidence of Purgatory is found in the 2nd Book of Maccabees (two centuries before Christ).  Jewish militants led by Judas Maccabees returned to a battlefield to recover the bodies of their fallen comrades only to find them wearing tokens of a pagan idol –  a clear violation of God’s 1st Commandment.  Judas Maccabees and his soldiers offered prayers for the dead so their sins may be forgiven.  They took up a collection for the poor in Jerusalem as a “sin offering” (2 Maccabees 12: 43-45).  Praying for the dead implies their sins may be cleansed in the next life.  That’s why we pray for the dead today.

St Paul writes upon our death that the work we do will be tested by fire.  If the work is good, we survive the test and are rewarded.  If not, the work is lost, and we can only be saved through fire (1 Corinthians 3:12-15).  In speaking of the resurrection, St Peter writes “we may have to suffer various trials, so the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which is tested by fire, may redound to praise and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:7).”  Fire is a biblical symbol for purification.  Being saved through fire after being judged for our life’s work means we can undergo a purification process after death.  This purification takes place in Purgatory.

Our Catechism says “On the evening of life, we shall be judged on our love (CCC 1022.)”  Therefore, we should strive to live a good life in God’s grace so we can die a Good Death.  Always remembering “God is the one who decides who goes to Heaven.”  Deacon John

Adapted from “Introduction to Catholicism for Adults” by Rev. James Socias

 

Fr. Joe Bulletin, May 20 2018

Greetings in Christ, all!

What a wonderful Easter Season this has been.  Now, here we are at the Feast of Pentecost: the birthday of our Church.

What we celebrate this weekend is nothing less than the joy of the God giving us the gift of His Holy Spirit.

For many Catholics, we are not quite sure what to do with this gift.  We are not sure what the Holy Spirit is and how He can help us.  To that, we have been blessed to offer the Life in the Spirit seminars and, while we are wrapping up our first run of these sessions, we are offering more.  I simply cannot encourage all of us enough to check this out.  Keep your eyes and ears open for the next set of sessions: you will NOT be disappointed.

I wanted to take some space here and run through the summer with you.

Our schedule this summer is quite…interesting. There are a lot of different things going on that make our calendar quite challenging and what I ask is for your patience and understanding with the inevitable errors or changes that will come about as a result.

The biggest thing that is challenging us continues to be the lack of priests.  Fr. Tomy is stretched over Mt. Zion, St. Anthony’s and us and I continue to cover Sacred Heart, St. Mary on the Lake and St. Joseph in Adrian.  While the original plan was for that time at St. Joe’s to have ended in June, it remains unclear to me whether or not that will actually happen, as their new priest will not be arriving until August.

Beyond that, we are blessed to have a lot of marriages, baptisms and other such wonders and it is going to make our calendar interesting.

If you see something and wonder why we are doing it on such and such date when we should be doing it on another, know that we met for hours trying to figure this all out and have offered everyone our absolute best.

So…there it is.  We are beginning a wonderful and challenging run that we will give to God and ask Him to strengthen us for.

May God bless our efforts to worship Him, love Him and love each other more every day!

 

DSA Commitment Weekend, May 19-20, 2018

“Go and Announce the Gospel of the Lord” is the theme of our 2018 Diocesan Services Appeal.  It reminds us that each of us is called to discipleship.    Supporting the DSA is one way to share our blessings and the Good News with the world.

This weekend, our parish will conduct Commitment Weekend for our Diocesan Services Appeal. This is when we will be asking each member of Sacred Heart Parish to consider a generous gift to DSA. Our parish goal of $23,297.00 can be reached if each one of us shares a portion of the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. Please prayerfully consider how you or your family will respond to this call to carry on Christ’s work in our community.

 

2018 DSA Prayer

Loving and gracious God, we praise you and we thank you for the bountiful gifts that you have bestowed upon us.

Instill in us the courage to “Go and Announce the Gospel of the Lord.”

Help us to understand that we are called to discipleship, to grow actively in faith and to go and share the good news with the world.

Please bless our unified efforts and help us to bring Christ’s love to all we encounter.

Give us the grace to be generous in our support of the Diocesan Services Appeal, so that we may faithfully participate as missionary disciples in the work of Your Holy Church.

Amen.