My Dear Parishioners,
The Christmas season ends today with the celebration of the Baptism of the Lord. Starting on Monday we begin celebrating Ordinary Time, when we remember the day to day ministry of Jesus. While we have to say goodbye to the Christmas decorations, we will try to keep the Poinsettias going for as long as possible. By the way I want to thank Carla Venditti and Karen Baranowski for watering the flowers throughout this entire time. We got our flowers from the Molenaar greenhouse this year and they were quite spectacular. Thank you also to all those who memorialized a loved one on the Christmas Decorations envelope, your support helped to make our celebrations special. Those intentions have been on the reredos for the entire Christmas season.
This week our young people will be celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the very first time. Please keep them in your prayers as they come to experience the love and mercy of the Lord Jesus. Hopefully, we will see this as a reminder that we need to stay close to the Lord, and that whenever we have placed an obstacle in our relationship with God, He gives us the opportunity to have that obstacle removed.
May God Bless You,
Archbishop Chaput has asked that the following letter be communicated throughout the Archdiocese in the month of January:
Dear Friends in Christ,
As we near the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord, celebrated on February 2, we once again take this opportunity to acknowledge in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the many men and women who have dedicated their lives in service to the Church. Saint John Paul II spoke of the different forms of consecrated life as “the many branches which [sink their] roots into the Gospel and brings forth abundant fruit in every season of the Church’s life.” These diverse forms include: Monastic Life, the Orders of Virgins, Hermits, and Institutes completely devoted to contemplation, Societies of Apostolic Life, Secular Institutes, and new or renewed forms of the consecrated life. We’re blessed to have each of these forms represented in the Archdiocese.
Today, in our Church and in our world, the dedicated witness of consecrated men and women is essential. The need for that special form of witness, along with prayer and the Sacraments as weapons of holiness, has never been more obvious. So please pray for an increase of vocations to consecrated life, and an increase in spiritual and material support for those who choose to heed God’s call.
This year we would also like to invite all consecrated women and men to come for a Holy Hour at 11 :00 a.m. at the Cathedral Chapel of Saints Peter and Paul, prior to the 12:05 Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for the Feast of the Presentation on Saturday, February 2, 2019.
May the gift of vocations to the consecrated life and the many founders and foundresses who have been raised to be “Clouds of Witnesses” in our Archdiocese continue to be that source of inspiration for all of us as Catholic Christians as we celebrate once again, the World Day of Consecrated Life.
Sincerely yours in Jesus Christ,
Most Reverend Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap.
Archbishop of Philadelphia