R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Speak, Lord, your servant is listening;
you have the words of everlasting life.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Dear Sacred Heart and St. Mary Families,
I want to say thank you to the families who donated money last fall to redo the basement entrance of Sacred Heart Church. The money left over from that is being used to redo the flooring in the central multipurpose room in the school basement. Dan and Randy have been working with a parishioner to help install it- all part of their pastoral training!
Last week a group from St. Mary on the Lake came to the farm for the day. It was an auction item at last years Sacred Heart School Gala. We had a beautiful day and a great time. It came up that I have only once ridden a cow- here is the photographic evidence!
I want to continue the theme of concrete ways to grow in your faith. This weekend I want to mention the Catholic Biblical School of Michigan. This is a four-year study taking you through the whole Bible. They are just about to start another session with a campus being held in Adrian (at Holy Family Parish‘s St. Mary Campus) — Tue 7-9 pm
What is the Catholic Biblical School of Michigan ?
CBSM (Catholic Biblical School of Michigan) is a lay apostolate incorporated as an independent non-profit organization [501 (c) 3 status] listed in the Official Catholic Directory,with a Board of Directors approved by the Archdiocese of Detroit.
CBSM exists to invite Catholics to encounter Jesus in and through the inspired Word of God and grow as missionary disciples, fueled by daily connection to God in His Word.
What’s a lay apostolate?
The Church speaks of the lay apostolate in two ways: one is the apostolate common to all of the baptized laity, “spreading the kingdom of Christ throughout the earth for the glory of God the Father, to enable all men and women to share in His saving redemption” (Pope St. Paul VI, Apostolicam Actuositatem, 1965). We do this seemingly spontaneously, led by the Holy Spirit as individuals to bring the Good News to the world and strengthen the faith of fellow believers. The other form of a lay apostolate is a specific organization of (mostly) laypeople ministering in a specific way in a cooperative relationship with ordained Church leaders. CBSM is exactly this, an organization entrusted with a ministry of teaching and proclaiming the Word of God, so that all of us as baptized believers might be strengthened and become more confident, bold, and loving in spreading the kingdom of God.
CBSM operates with ecclesiastical approval from the Archbishop of Detroit and the Bishops of Lansing, Grand Rapids, and Kalamazoo. Our Board of Directors includes clergy and lay leaders. Like many lay apostolates, we operate without financial support from Arch/dioceses, giving us a spirituality of seeking to bless the Church through the ministry of teaching, prayer, and proclamation of the Word we offer.
Ask the Lord if this is the way He is calling you to grow, to take the next step
Dear Sacred Heart families,
We are under construction again this summer. With the help of Steve Kope, Dan LaCroix and Randy Koenigsknecht, we are making a lot of much needed updates to the appearance of the school.
Thanks to a generous donation, the flooring in our big room downstairs has been replaced with water-proof, vinyl flooring that should last several decades. The room is very functional and we will be able to use it for many events in the future.
We are also giving Mrs. Schutte’s 3rd/4th grade room a much needed remodel. The room will get new carpet, paint and fresh ceiling tiles.
The front of the school is scheduled to receive new landscaping and fresh mulch. It is a beautiful habitat and we are excited to have the donated funds to make it fresh and new.
Along with the new security updates and routine maintenance, it is a very busy summer at Sacred Heart. We have been so blessed this year by our community who supports Catholic education. The school is really starting to shine and we are very excited to show off the finished product at the beginning of the school year.
Also, we still have a few spots left in preschool and kindergarten. Be sure to stop in and register to ensure your child’s enrollment for next year.
Anne Atkin, Principal
Last week we talked about why we have funerals. Funerals help us understand that death is the doorway to heaven. They provide us a time and place to reaffirm our faith in the new life Jesus promised us where death is only the end of our earthly life, but not the end of our spiritual life and relationship with God. Funerals give us a chance to say “goodbye” and remember the person who lived. This week let’s take a look at planning funerals.
Although planning someone’s funeral may seem burdensome and untimely, it is really a privilege. But, that doesn’t mean planning a funeral is easy. Think of a funeral as a gift to the family and friends of the person who died, so they can mourn and embrace the painful feelings of grief over losing a loved one. Although they may be deeply saddened, the planning process helps acknowledge the reality of the death. But, when all is said and done, planning the funeral can leave a feeling of deep satisfaction that they helped plan a meaningful tribute for someone they care so much about.
Funerals have a way of getting us to wake up, to embrace the wonder of life, think about what we truly care about, and how we want to spend our precious remaining days. Planning and attending a meaningful funeral can have a lasting and positive impact on the lives of so many people. Tapping into the power of a funeral liturgy helps us discover what it means to have a relationship with God. After all, as Christians, the happiest day of our life is when we meet God face-to-face and enjoy everlasting life in His presence.
Celebrating Christian funerals brings hope and consolation to the living. While proclaiming the Gospel and witnessing hope in the resurrection, funerals also recall God’s mercy and our need to turn to Him in times of crisis. By embracing funerals, we begin to recognize the spiritual bond that exists between the living and the dead, knowing we will someday be raised up and reunited in the new heaven and earth where death will be no more.
Jesus spoke to the crowds about the kingdom of God,
and he healed those who needed to be cured.
As the day was drawing to a close,
the Twelve approached him and said,
“Dismiss the crowd
so that they can go to the surrounding villages and farms
and find lodging and provisions;
for we are in a deserted place here.”
He said to them, “Give them some food yourselves.”
They replied, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have,
unless we ourselves go and buy food for all these people.”
Now the men there numbered about five thousand.
Then he said to his disciples,
“Have them sit down in groups of about fifty.”
They did so and made them all sit down.
Then taking the five loaves and the two fish,
and looking up to heaven,
he said the blessing over them, broke them,
and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd.
They all ate and were satisfied.
And when the leftover fragments were picked up,
they filled twelve wicker baskets.
Dear St. Mary’s and Sacred Heart
My youngest brother, Randy Koenigsknecht, will be staying at the rectory for a few weeks this summer. He just completed his second year of seminary. With Dan already having a college degree and needing two less years of seminary they will be classmates. They will be helping around the parishes both with maintenance things and helping out with various ministries. (An added bonus is that he will be the fourth player for a variety of card games!) Thank you for all of your prayers of vocations!
When it comes to our life of faith, we can have the desire to grow, to feel the Lord calling to something more. The question than becomes – how? I want to take the next couple of weeks and mention a couple of opportunities available for growing deeper.
The first is Encounter Ministries (https://encounterministries.us/). They are based out of St. Patrick’s parish in Brighton, Mi. Their vision is:
“Evangelization cannot be reduced to words and persuasion only. Our vision is to see a Church truly empowered by the Holy Spirit where disciples are confident to proclaim the Gospel and then demonstrate it through signs, wonders and miracles. God’s love is supernatural and he wants to raise up a Church that can bring heaven to earth through the power and love of God in their life.
My message and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of spirit and power, so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God (1 Cor 2: 4-5)”
Our logo with the Eucharist in it is very important. In the Eucharist, we receive the mighty Sacrament of Jesus’ body so that we too might become a sacrament to the world. CCC 521 says “Christ enables us to live in him all that he himself lived, and he lives it in us. ‘By his Incarnation, he, the Son of God, has in a certain way united himself with each man.’ We are called only to become one with him, for he enables us as the members of his Body to share in what he lived for us in his flesh as our model.”
At times we feel hindered in our walk with God by obstacles and hurts in our lives. Other times we feel prompted to take a concrete step of faith like praying over someone but we don’t feel comfortable or equipped for it. Encounter Ministries is a powerful place to receive both inner healing and to be equipped for learning how to pray with and for others.
To that end you will see us advertising Encounter Ministries’ Summer Intensive.
“The summer intensive is an evening school happening July 22-25 that provides a survey of the content offered in the first four quarters of the Encounter School of Ministry over a fast four-day period. The summer intensive is perfect for anyone desiring to attend the Encounter School during the year but unable to do so because of distance or schedule. It is also ideal for those discerning their enrollment in the school of ministry but needing greater discernment.”
Ask the Lord if this is the way He is calling you to grow, to take the next step!
Last week, we celebrated three funerals in five days between our two parishes. With so many funerals, have you ever wondered why we have funerals at all? Many, if not most, people don’t even want to talk about death or dying. Some view funerals as simply the end of the person’s life. However, a Christian funeral celebrates the completion of a person’s life from baptism to death then going home to God.
At a funeral, we bring the body of a loved one back to the church or funeral home one last time. Just as they were welcomed at the church door on the day of baptism, washed free from sin and clothed in the white robe of redemption, we sprinkle the casket or urn with holy water and clothe it in the white cloth (the pall) as a reminder of our baptismal garment.
A complete Catholic Christian funeral is celebrated with three liturgies: a Vigil Service on the evening before the funeral to keep watch with the grieving family and remember the loved one who died, the Funeral Service (which can be with or without a Mass), and the Graveside Committal Service for burial of the body or cremated remains.
Many people don’t like, or want to think about, planning a funeral. But it’s important to remember, when someone dies, we want to make all the right decisions to honor that person. So, one of the most important gifts of planning a meaningful funeral is that it helps family and friends to focus their thoughts and feelings on something positive. The funeral encourages them to think about the person who has died and remember the ways they touched our lives. The remembering, deciding, and reflecting that takes place in planning the funeral liturgies is an important part of the process of grief and mourning. This process of contemplation and discovery creates a memorable and moving funeral experience for all who attend.
Funerals provide us a time and place to reaffirm our faith in a new life after death. Funerals show us that death is only the end of our earthly life, but not the end of our spiritual life and relationship with God. By staking our lives with the hope of resurrection assured to us by Jesus, we believe that death is the doorway to heaven. Baptism celebrates the beginning of our life in Christ, funerals celebrate our earthly life and faithful relationship with God as we look toward the promise of everlasting life.
For additional information, please visit https://www.faithfest.com
Gospel JN 16:12-15
“I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.
But when he comes, the Spirit of truth,
he will guide you to all truth.
He will not speak on his own,
but he will speak what he hears,
and will declare to you the things that are coming.
He will glorify me,
because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.
Everything that the Father has is mine;
for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine
and declare it to you.”