St. Stephen Cathedral Mass

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(602 Sycamore St)

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Pastor’s Perspective

Published on August 31st, 2012

Dear Parishioners,

Greetings from Down Under!  As you read this, I am on my way to New Zealand.  I have been invited to represent the Canon Law Society of America at the annual meeting of the Canon Law Society of Australia and New Zealand.  The meeting is next week, but I decided that if I was going to travel that far, I was not going to just sit through three or four days of meetings and then turn around and come home, so I am taking some vacation days in the week ahead.  Welcome to Fr. Joe Mills and thank you, Fr. Joe, for covering for me these two week-ends.

As we prepare to vote in November there are many serious issues to be considered.  Many of us are already tired of all the sound-bite TV and radio spots and we dread their multiplication between now and election day.  Some may be tempted to tune it all out and refuse to vote.  I hope you will not make that choice.  Indeed, the Church teaches that there are three primary responsibilities of all citizens: 1) to pay taxes; 2) to defend their country; 3) to vote. (cf. Catechism of the Cathoic Church, 2240).  There are four steps each of us should take before we step into the voting booth.  First, inform yourself about the Church’s teachings.  Second, inform yourself about the issues. Third, seek input from Catholics you respect.  Fourth, Pray.  Pray for our country.  Pray to the Holy Spirit asking for the grace to make a wise choice as you go to the polls.

Labor Day week-end is an occasion for us to thank God for the jobs we have (if we are employed) and to pray for those who are unemployed and underemployed.  Our American bishops are currently developing a pastoral reflection on work, poverty, and our broken economy which leaves too many without decent work. The bishops say that a renewed respect for workers is key to a renewed economy.  I will provide a link to this reflection once it becomes available.

Love, Fr. John

The Catholic community of Saint Stephen Cathedral serves to welcome, evangelize and worship in the name of Jesus Christ.
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