Ministry opportunity of the week: I have shared the five worthwhile ministries supported by the 2018 Catholic Stewardship Appeal, which has the theme “Dare to Lead”: support to parishes and parish leaders, Catholic schools and religious education, education of priests and deacons, young adult ministry, and Catholic Charities. I urge you one more time to support this appeal. Please use the mailing you received and be as generous as possible. There are extra forms and envelopes in the back of church, if you misplaced yours.
Tuesday evening, March 13 at 7 pm, we will have Stations of the Cross focusing on peace and justice issues. Please join us for this inspiring devotion.
This coming weekend, March 17-18, I will be in Racine with the Salvatorian candidates for our intercommunity workshop. Fr. Peter Schuessler SDS will celebrate the Masses. Please support us in your prayers.
Our first reading from the end of the second book of Chronicles is the last passage of the Hebrew scripture. It presents salvation history through creation, the fall, the covenants God made with His people, their unfaithfulness, the exile, and their return to Jerusalem through the largess of a pagan king. What comes through it all is that God’s love is always there. He never abandons His people no matter what they do: He is waiting for their return.
The same is true today: no matter what we do, the Lord is waiting for us to return to Him. That is the focus and purpose of Lent: Come back to me, with all your heart. Don’t let fear, keep us apart…Long have I waited for your coming home to me…
The sacraments are a special way we come to God in our need. At Masses this weekend we have the opportunity to receive the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick, asking God to heal us and support us in our weaknesses. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is an opportunity to return to the Lord, asking forgiveness for what we have done wrong or for the good we have failed to do. In addition to our normal confession times on Saturday afternoons, we have the opportunity on Tuesday evening, March 20, to participate in a communal celebration with individual confession afterwards. Three priests will be available.
I urge you to mark your calendar for that evening and join with other members of the community in celebrating this most important sacrament as a preparation for the celebration of Easter. And let us support each other in prayer.
-- Paul James Portland, SDS