St. Stephen Cathedral Mass
Blessed Sacrament Chapel Mass
Published on October 31st, 2014
I. All Souls Day, the Commemoration of all the Faithful Departed, November 2, is the traditional day we remember our loved ones who have died. In most of the Jewish Scriptures (Old Testament), there was no belief in the afterlife; the believer’s only opportunity to live with God was in this life. Physical death was seen as the end of life in the presence of God. Yet, the Book of Wisdom tells us that those who embrace wisdom will live in grace and mercy with God forever. Our first reading for this Sunday, Wisdom 3:1–9, shows some of the first indications of the belief that the deceased survive physical death. This growing sense of life after death sets in a new light today’s Responsorial Psalm 23 which proclaims the shepherd is our true guide, not only through the sufferings in this life, but as we navigate the final journey through death to life in Christ. Our second reading, Romans 5:5-11, reflects on the transition point at death when we face the divine judge. In John, known as the Gospel of Life, Jesus is presented as the Source of eternal Life after death, John 6:37-40.
II. Privilege and Responsibility: Election day, this Tuesday, calls Catholics to place an informed vote. Look at all the issues, and there are many! You may wish to consult the US Bishops’ voting guide, www.faithfulcitizenship.org. In a time where people around our globe are dying for the right to vote, I find it lamentable that less than 50% of US citizens will take advantage of this right and responsibility. Please exercise your privilege to make an informed vote!
III. Memorial Prayer Service for Deceased Loved Ones: The Catholic Church sets aside November as a month of remembrance for the faithful departed. Take time to pray for those you know who have died. Visit a cemetery. One wonderful way to remember those who have died is to request a Mass to be celebrated in their memory. On Thursday, November 6, at 6:30pm, a Memorial Prayer Service will honor our loved ones who have died, especially this past year. A reception will follow. A great way to support those who have lost loved ones this past year!
IV. Festival of Faith: St. Stephen Cathedral will host an Open House for our community-at-large next Sunday, November 9, 1:30-4:00pm. Thanks to Kathy Wright, a member of the Marketing Committee (formerly known as Marketing/Hospitality Committee) for arranging hosts/hostesses for our church tours! Pick up a Festival of Faith brochure at our church doors!
V. A Right Time and Place! I have asked our ushers and helpers NOT to put bulletins out before Mass. Believe it or not, some people read the bulletin during the celebration of the Eucharist! Hopefully, you will be handed a bulletin as you leave Mass! Some people choose to read our bulletin online.
VI. St. Denis Church Celebrates 100 Years! Along with Bishop Medley, five priests and a packed church celebrated Mass, followed by a delicious dinner, last Sunday afternoon at St. Denis Church near Fancy Farm. I was pastor of St. Denis and St. Jude in Clinton when I was pastor of St. Jerome in Fancy Farm, 1983-1989. The parishioners at St. Denis have not had a resident pastor in many years, but they have great ownership of their parish. Congratulations, St. Denis parishioners!
In Joy and Hope,