My Dear Parishioners,
This week marks the end of the current liturgical year. Next year we will begin a new liturgical year and season with the start of Advent.
Liturgical Year 2024 is designated as A Year of Grace and Pope Francis has asked that we should focus this year on prayer both individual and communal.
We have started our Giving Tree program. This is the annual opportunity to provide gifts to the less fortunate. We ask you to take a “gift tag” off the tree in the sanctuary, which identifies a specific need for the various charitable organizations that we help. Then you are asked to supply a gift card in the amount of $25 – $35 from a department store, or check to St. Joseph (for tuition) to help meet the particular need. We ask that you return the card to the Giving Tree Box – placed at the base of the tree by Dec. 11th so they may be distributed to those in need, with enough time to get their shopping done. The people of this parish have always been very generous with this program and we are very grateful for your support.
Next week we will have the special collection for the Retirement Fund for Religious. This is the collection that helps to support the retired Religious Sisters and Brothers who taught so many of us. Archbishop Pérez has asked us to communicate this letter in advance of the collection.
God Bless you,
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
For many generations, the Catholic Church has been richly blessed by the ministries of consecrated men and women in religious congregations.
They have tirelessly dedicated their lives to helping others in the fields of education, health care, social services, and more. The number of those in need has grown in our city and nation over the years and our religious have been there at every turn to provide comfort and care while sharing the pure love of Jesus Christ. Our local Church has been emphasizing the importance of Missionary Discipleship over the past few years. I ask that you join me in commending these men and women religious as shining examples of that ideal.
The annual appeal for the Retirement Fund for Religious will be held in our Parishes during the weekend of December 2-3, 2023. This special collection is taken up in all parishes nationally. Thousands of elderly sisters, brothers, and religious order priests have spent years working in Catholic schools, hospitals, parishes, and organizations — often for a small stipend. Their sacrifices leave their religious communities without adequate funds for retirement and eldercare. Your gift to the Retirement Fund for Religious Collection helps provide prescription medications, nursing care and health related assistance in these later years.
Please support the Retirement Fund for Religious Collection scheduled in our parishes December 2-3, 2023. It is an opportunity for us to give back to those who have selflessly given so much. Every gift helps no matter the size.
I also ask that you please continue to keep our men and women religious in your prayers. Thank you in advance for your kind contributions and continued support of our elder religious. Be assured of remembrance in my prayers. May God bless you abundantly.
+Most Reverend Nelson J. Pérez, D.D.
Archbishop of Philadelphia