Signs of Hope

09-15-2019From Fr. Antony's DeskFr. John Barbella

I was truly inspired by the presentations by the gentlemen from the Corona Self Help Center that spoke briefly at Holy Mass last weekend. We are all well aware of the problems that come with the epidemic drug and alcohol addiction in our country. Hearing the testimony of these men, who are beating this addiction with the help of God, was very uplifting. To me it was a sign of hope!

Thank you to everyone who supported them. Please keep them in your prayers each day. I kept their contact information in my files, in case you know anyone who might need their help!

I was also happy to see the nice crowd at the Communion Breakfast in honor of our Blessed Mother’s Birthday (September 8 th). It was a simple, but very nice affair. What I especially enjoyed was seeing so many parishioners – of different ages and backgrounds – having a good time together. It fills me with hope for our parish and community.

The Knights of Columbus are really to be thanked and congratulated on a job well done. They not only did the cooking, but donated the vast majority of the food for the breakfast. It is characteristic of them to go to such lengths to be of service and to strengthen the bonds of community in our parish.

As I said at the Breakfast, the Knights next project will be to bring a special Icon to our parish, called Our Lady Help of Persecuted Christians. The icon is a beautiful image of our Blessed Mother. The Knights have commissioned many copies of this icon which will travel to parishes around the country and the world. It will arrive in our parish on Saturday afternoon, October 12th and remain with us for a week. I hope it encourages many of us to spend some time in prayer and reflection. A full schedule for the visit will be published in upcoming bulletins.

I encourage every Catholic man in our parish to join the Knights of Columbus. They are a great group of faithful men who do an awful lot of good work. In addition to things like the Communion Breakfast and travelling icon, the Knights of Columbus are among the most charitable institutions – both globally and locally. Countless men have the knights to be a source of fellowship and support in living their faith.

Remember that Religious Education is starting soon! The traditional Tuesday CCD Classes begin on Tuesday, September 24 at 4PM. The Monthly Family Program begins on Monday, September 30 at 6PM. Both programs hold classes at the Parish School on Roseberry Street for students in grades 1-8. Any parish children who attend public school should be enrolled in CCD classes as a means of learning their faith and preparing for First Communion and Confirmation. If you have any questions, just call the parish office and we’ll be happy to help you.

As in the past few years, any adults who wish to learn more about the Bible are invited to attend the Parent Sessions at the Monthly CCD program. At those session, I will be offering an ongoing Study of the Gospel of Matthew. We usually get started around 6:20 – after the kids have gone to their classes. The dates for the program are September 30, October 28, November 18, January 27, February 24, March 16, and March 30.

Finally, please say a Hail Mary for me today – and every day. We receive so many blessings in answer to our prayers for each other. Be assured of my daily prayers for all of you.

Have a great week!

Fr. John