You and your family are invited to an ecumenical prayer service of song and story in celebration of Black History Month of Friday, February 8, at 7 p.m. at Holy Cross Parish, 1050 Wilber Street, South Bend, featuring internationally-known, Christian recording artist Amanda Vernon. She will share her original music and give the faith-filled stories behind the songs. For more info, visit amandavernon.com.
As we enter the Ordinary time of the Church calendar we look back over the past few weeks in gratitude for the great gift God has bestowed on us. It is also an opportunity for me to thank so many of you for all you did over the Seasons of Advent and Christmas. The Giving Tree this year set a record for the number of gifts donated, our food collection was good, and many people were so generous in helping families in need.
This week we celebrate Catholic Schools. Most especially we celebrate Saint Matthew School, our faith, the traditions, the academics, and most of all the thousands of students who have gone to school here all these years. Many things have changed and yet if you go in the building you can get that feeling of just being there yesterday. The spirit of the building and school remains the same year after year. Some of my fondest memories are of working here as a teacher in the school. The years I taught here before going to the seminary were some of the best.
I hope we all survived the bitter cold and are enjoying somewhat of a respite.
Unfortunately, our Catholic School Week celebrations were hampered with cold days off of school, but very wise moves on behalf of our administrators. There really is not a reason to take a chance with the health of our children, and we do have many walkers. Therefore we cannot be too careful. You can view some of the days and events that went on when we were here in session in this weeks bulletin.
The Lenten Season, which begins on Ash Wednesday (March 6) and ends with the beginning of the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday (April 18), has a two-fold character: to prepare both Catechumens (those to be baptized at the Easter Vigil) and the Faithful to celebrate the Paschal Mystery (the work of salvation wrought by the death and resurrection of Jesus). Catechumens, with the Rite of Election, the Sacred Scrutinies, and Catechesis, prepare for the Sacraments of Christian Initiation at the Solemn Easter Vigil. The Faithful, by being more attentive to prayer and to the Word of God, prepare themselves by penance for the renewal of their own baptismal promises. The three-fold works of Lent are PRAYER, FASTING, and ALMSGIVING (Read Matthew 6.1-6; 16-18).