My Dear Parishioners,
This Monday, October 4th, is the Church’s feast of St. Francis of Assisi. St. Joseph Church will host our annual Blessing of the Animals, in honor of St. Francis on Sunday, October 3rd at 1:00 p.m. Please bring your leashed animals to the grassy area between the two back parking lots for a brief prayer service and blessing.
October is also the time when we have our “October Count” during Masses. We count all those in attendance at all of our Saturday night and Sunday Masses and forward those numbers to the Archdiocese. Please pardon the additional clicking noise during Mass, and thank you to our ushers for taking the count.
In two weeks, we will kick off our 100th Anniversary by focusing on Jesus in the Eucharist. Our parish 40 Hours celebration will be on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, October 17, 18, and 19th at 7:00 p.m. I am very happy that we have a “parish son” coming back for this. Fr. Jim Olson will be the homilist for these three evenings.
Just a reminder to make an appointment for your family’s free photo portrait session for Nov. 19 or 20. Participants will receive one free 8 x 10 professional portrait and one free 100th Anniversary Photo Directory. You can sign up on our website www.saintjosephchurch.us.
October is annually observed as Respect Life Month in Catholic Churches across our nation. The U.S. Bishop’s Conference have offered the following reflection.
God Bless you,
RESPECT LIFE MONTH 2021 | REFLECTION
St. Joseph: Faithful Protector of Mother and Child
The infant Christ “came into our world in a state of great vulnerability. He needed to be defended, protected, cared for and raised by Joseph” (PC 5). The humble and often hidden carpenter of Nazareth accompanied Mary in her pregnancy, assisted at the birth of the Messiah in a stable, presented Jesus in the Temple, fled with his family far from their homeland to protect them, and lovingly raised Jesus as his own son in the years to come.
While the angel of the Lord appeared to Mary to announce that she would bring forth the Savior of the world, it was revealed to Joseph in a series of dreams how God’s plans would be brought to fulfillment. As Pope Francis highlights, “God trusted Joseph, as did Mary, who found in him someone who would not only save her life, but would always provide for her and her child” (PC 5).
Like every other human family, the Holy Family had to confront real and concrete challenges. Yet, “in every situation, Joseph declared his own ‘fiat’” (PC 3). His “yes” to the Lord meant that regardless of the hardship and personal sacrifice to himself, he consistently chose to put the needs of Mary and Jesus before his own. Joseph’s devotion helps reveal to us our own call to show special care for the lives of those whom God has entrusted to us.
During this Year of St. Joseph, each of us can find in him “an intercessor, a support and a guide in times of trouble” (PC, Intro). Joseph shows us how to say “yes” to life, despite our own fears, frailties, and weaknesses. For it is Joseph who was “chosen by God to guide the beginnings of the history of redemption. He was the true ‘miracle’ by which God saves the child and his mother” (PC 5).
May we, too, be miracles in the lives of those who are most in need, especially at the beginning and end of life. Dear St. Joseph, you who were “able to turn a problem into a possibility by trusting always in divine providence” (PC 5), help us to imitate your faithful trust and courage.
Excerpts from Patris corde, © 2020, Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2021, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.