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Saint Francis
St. Mary’s Schools All Class Reunion
Celebrating St. Mary’s Basilica
Centennial Year
Saturday, January 24, 2015
Mass at 5:00 pm
Hors d’oeuvre Reception Following

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Music

Saint Vincent de Paul

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Chrustmas Schedule

 

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Sometimes I think we idealize the Holy Family. Or remember their story selectively. But the Scriptures of this Sunday immediately after Christmas indicates otherwise. This family, like …” Every family…” Katherine Hepburn said in “A Lion in Winter, “has its problems.” A child out of wedlock, scandal, fleeing across national boundaries, a life on the road.

 

Still Sirach gives advice about honoring one’s father and mother and taking care of one’s parents. Colossians gives us a list of virtues that would enhance the life of any family unit, and urges us to cap them all with love, which should be the ultimate bond of every family. However, the Gospel passage pushes us in another direction. This is not ordinary, peaceful family life. The Holy Family is forced to flee in fear for their lives and become refugees in a foreign land. Even when they returned to Israel, they had to move to a new area to avoid the civil authorities. What does this sound like today? How many families around the world experience this kind of disruption today? How many families even in our own country are torn apart by war and persecution and economic forces and our federal immigration policies? The U.S. Bishops have reminded us of our basic responsibility to welcome the stranger and to support families who are facing difficult struggles to survive. They say: “We judge ourselves as a community of faith by the way we treat the most vulnerable among us. The treatment of migrants challenges the consciences of elected officials, policy makers, enforcement officers, residents of border communities, and providers of legal aid and social services, many of whom share our Catholic faith.” Are we ready to welcome the Christ who comes to us in the guise of immigrants, documented or undocumented? Are we ready to welcome the stranger into our lives and our hearts? This Feast of the Holy Family and their flight into Egypt gives us pause to remember all those in our land and throughout the world forced to leave their lands to provide for their families or to escape persecution. The Church stands in solidarity with these brothers and sisters! Let us commit ourselves to their pastoral care and work toward adequate immigration reform so that migrants may live with dignity as children of God.

I am away for a few days break with family in the Midwest. But know I take my gratitude for all of you with me. This season has been brilliant with volunteerism.- People giving time away. I am so honored to work with all the parish staff and the friars of our Franciscan community. Gordon and the Choirs have been working double time since the beginning of Advent. Our thanks to him and all those who sing praises for a living.

A gentle week.

Fr. Michael



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