A Message from
Sunday, December 8, 2013
Peace and all Good!
Welcome to Advent and a new Liturgical Year! Celebrating Advent well helps us understand Christmas Time more profoundly. These two seasons are best understood and appreciated together. During Advent, the time of expectation, we are reminded of the coming of Christ not only at Christmas, but of his Second Coming in glory at the end of time. This is a time of grace, a time for a new advent of Christ into our lives. Our attention is drawn to the light that brings brightness to our darkest corners. Christ will come again, lead us from darkness, and make us his own. Toward the end of Advent, we prepare more specifically for the celebration of Christmas—the celebration of the dawn of our salvation. The joy of Christmas lies in the realization of the great dignity that is ours because Christ became human. How great is the hope to which we are called! During our Advent Season there is a great call for justice and peace. On this First Sunday of Advent, we are called to prepare for the coming of the Lord and to celebrate Christ’s entry into our lives by living as men, women and children of justice who work for a more peaceful world. As Pope Paul VI proclaimed many years ago at the United Nations: “If you want peace, work for justice!” As we are busy about many things this December, the great figures of this Advent Season: Jeremiah, Baruch, Zephaniah and Micah, along with John the Baptist and Mary, the Holy Mother of God remind us of the importance of patient listening, paying attention, patient waiting, and hope-filled living.As we begin this Advent Season, please remember the needy by participating in our Giving Tree. You may take an ornament from the tree and purchase the gift listed, wrap the gift and return it to the Giving Tree on the Sundays of Advent. All your thoughtful gifts will be distributed by our St. Vincent de Paul Society to needy families. Please make Christmas a little brighter for others. Thank you!
Traditionally during Advent, the Church welcomes new members into the catechumenate through inspiring Rites symbolizing that these brothers and sisters are desirous of continuing their faith journey in the R.C.I.A. Next Sunday, those in the Rite of Christian Initiation Process will participate in the Rite of Welcome during the 9:00 a.m. Mass. Please pray for these lovely people seeking full communion with Catholic Church through the Easter sacraments.
This year Monday, December 9th is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, the Patroness of this Basilica. We are the Basilica of St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception. The beautiful Rose Window above the choir is of the Immaculate Conception. This year our feast day is even more important—we will begin the celebration of the Basilica’s 100th Anniversary! On February 11, 1915, the church was dedicated and on Monday at 5:30 p.m., we will begin a yearlong celebration of this, the church’s jubilee! Everyone is urged to attend the beautiful Opening Ceremonies outside the doors of the church. With lovely music and ritual, the restored Holy Door of the Basilica will be blessed and opened for the grand procession to begin the Solemn Mass in honor of the Immaculate Conception. After the Mass everyone is invited to a lovely reception in the social hall! This will be an event you won’t want to miss!
(from left to right) Fr. Luis Baldonado, Fr. Vincent J. Mesi, Fr. Micah Muhlen
and Brother Tito