Last Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, and Lent began. Lent is a grace-ﬁlled season in which we should turn back to God with all our hearts; we should strive with all our might to make Jesus the center of our lives. Many years ago, as I was preparing to leave for basic training in the Army, some veterans gave me the following advice: “What you put into it is what you get out of it.” How true this is when we’re talking about Lent and the spiritual life.
As a reminder: We have Stations of the Cross every Friday at 12 Noon and 7PM. We will have our Parish Lenten Mission on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, March 4th, 5th, and 6th, at 7PM in the Church followed by a Reception in the Parish Center. Fr. Anthony Jelinek will give the Mission. He will also hear Confessions from 6PM to 6:45PM each day prior to the Mission. Please see this bulletin for more details. Fr. Anthony is a popular retreat leader; I’m sure you will greatly appreciate his inspiring words of wisdom.
A few months ago, I asked for volunteers for a new ministry opportunity: serving as a Mass Sacristan. Generally speaking, Mass Sacristans would ensure that everything is setup correctly before Mass, and make sure everything is put away afterwards. They also open or close the Church (when needed). A few volunteers came forward, for which I am grateful. However, we are still in need of Mass Sacristans for the 7AM and 11AM Sunday Masses. We have the 5PM and 9AM Masses covered. I ask that you prayerfully consider whether or not God is calling you to this sacred ministry. Training would be provided by me. Please contact me by E-mailing me at: (email@example.com), or by calling the Rectory if you are interested in participating in this special, sacred ministry.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your generosity on two counts. First, I received a letter of acknowledgment from Fr. Peter Wojcik, Director of Parish Vitality and Mission, thanking our community for raising over $2,400 last year to assist our brothers and sisters aﬀected by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, and the earthquakes in Mexico. The Archdiocese of Chicago raised over $250,000 during the impromptu appeal.
Second, I received an E-mail from Fr. Charles Ssenyondo in Uganda. He says he misses the snow, but not the cold! He wanted me to pass on his expression of gratitude for our overwhelming love and support. The OLH community has sponsored at least 15 Seminarians, along with additional funding.
Truly this community has made a huge diﬀerence in promoting priests across the world; Fr. Charles and I are sincerely grateful for your generosity!
As I mentioned last week, my hope is that we are very intentional about entering into the discipline of Lent: may we all sincerely invest in attending only to the essentials, to make more room and time in our lives for God, prayer, and reaching out to help others.