Pastor's Message - August 12, 2018
“Brothers and sisters: Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were sealed for the day of redemption. All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice. And be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ. So be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.” ~Ephesians 4
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
I wish to thank our adult and parent volunteers and our many teens for helping run our annual Vacation Bible School this past week. Over 75 children attended this fabulous week filled with music, activities and crafts for our young people! A special thanks is in order to Elizabeth Kwiatkowski for her superb organizational skills in coordinating this program and all the volunteers, and also to her brother Matthew for keep all the needed electronic gizmos operating!
This Wednesday, August 15th is the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a Holy Day of Obligation. We will have Masses that day at 8:15am and 7:00pm.
A few of our college students told me that they are returning back to school this week. Yes, mid-August is upon us! If you are in college or in the military, send the parish office an E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know your “away” address. Then, at a time of our choosing, you will receive a special St. Rita care package! What is in the package will be a total surprise but obviously will contain something tasty. If you have any food allergies let us know that too. (I was never fond of Lima beans!)
May God Bless You this Week!
An Introduction to Sunday's Scripture Readings - August 12, 2018
The Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
In the hope that you will enter more fully into the Mass
I AM THE LIVING BREAD THAT CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN
Our readings this Sunday continue the theme from last Sunday of the food that God gives us to sustain us on our journey; and our transition from earthly concerns to spiritual concerns.
In our first reading (1 Kings 19:4-8), we hear the story of the prophet Elijah who was so disillusioned by the opposition to his ministry that he wanted to just give up. That's something that many people may identify with, at least sometimes. God intervened and provided food for Elijah's long journey through the desert to the mountain of God, Horeb. There, he would encounter God in the "tiny, whispering sound."
Elijah went a day's journey into the desert, until he came to a broom tree and sat beneath it. He prayed for death saying: "This is enough, O LORD! Take my life, for I am no better than my fathers." He lay down and fell asleep under the broom tree, but then an angel touched him and ordered him to get up and eat. Elijah looked and there at his head was a hearth cake and a jug of water. After he ate and drank, he lay down again, but the angel of the LORD came back a second time, touched him, and ordered, "Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!" He got up, ate, and drank; then strengthened by that food, he walked forty days and forty nights to the mountain of God, Horeb.
In our Gospel reading (John 6:41-51), we hear a continuation of Jesus' Bread of Life Discourse. The "Jews" (probably people who knew Jesus and his family) found it hard to accept Jesus' claims that he is the Messiah, the "bread that came down from heaven". They could not see beyond their earthly concerns and refused to accept that God can do anything.
The Jews murmured about Jesus because he said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven, " and they said, "Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, 'I have come down from heaven'?" Jesus answered and said to them, "Stop murmuring among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day. It is written in the prophets: They shall all be taught by God. Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me. Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."
In our Epistle reading (Ephesians 4:30-5:2), St. Paul describes how we Christians are to live in the Spirit. Nourished by the body and blood of Christ, we now have the grace and courage to be "imitators of God . . . to live in love."
Brothers and sisters: Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were sealed for the day of redemption. All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice. And be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ. So be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.
Both our first reading and Gospel passage lead us to the Eucharist. It is this spiritual food and drink that sustains us on our journey to the Father. In many ways, we are like Elijah, tired and disillusioned on the desert path towards the mountain of God. And then, the angel of the Lord appears and calls to us, "Get up and eat, lest the journey be too long for you." Perhaps this is what St. Thomas Aquinas had in mind when he wrote the song, Panis Angelicus. "The bread of angels has become the bread of men. . . the body of the Lord will nourish the poor and humble servant."
If your youth is in 8th Grade or above and has received the Sacraments of Baptism, Eucharist and Reconciliation, he or she will be ready to start preparing to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. This is a two year program. It will start in mid-September. Please register online here by September 1. If you have any questions, please email Marie Marton or call 671-1100 x 17.
NEXT WEEKEND we welcome Fr. James Kagunya, a diocesan priest, who will be with us on behalf of the Diocese of Nakuru in Kenya, Africa. Presently, the diocese of Nakuru is involved in pastoral care and promoting human development activities to a Catholic population of approximately 650,000 in the counties of Nakuru and Baringo.
With your support and prayers, the Diocese of Nakuru will provide food, water, and medical supplies to thousands of people affected by drought in many parts of the diocese. There are reports of human and livestock deaths because of acute food shortage. There is also a decrease of small communities due to depletion of pasture and water for livestock. This situation has sparked conflicts over dwindling pasture and water resources. School drop-outs have increased significantly with kids abandoning learning to become migrant herders. In most of the parishes, priests and nuns are serving hundreds of families with the much needed food, water and medical supplies.
We will have a second collection NEXT WEEKEND to help the Diocese of Nakuru. If you’re not prepared to contribute today, you can send in your donation to the parish office – marked “Missions”.
Tuesday, August 21 at 7:00 PM
AT HOLY SPIRIT CHURCH (1355 Hatch Rd, corner of Plank Rd.)
Presentation by: Fr. Jeff Chichester
All who have experienced the loss of a loved one through death are invited to attend. All are welcome!
Over the next few months please take advantage of special sales! In order to assist those in need in our area, we will be collecting school supplies until September. You can help with your donation of pens, pencils, crayons, highlighters, markers, dry erase markers, colored pencils, pencil cases, composition notebooks, binders in 1½ inch, 2 inch and 3 inch, filler paper in regular and college lines,colored folders, 3-5 subject spiral notebooks, dividers and book bags. There is a bin for these items in our greeting area in church. Thank you!
For help in planning future events here is next year's school calendar.
Join us at Mercy Center (1437 Blossom Rd.) for Mass on Thursday, September 6 at 7:00pm. Opening Ceremony is on Friday, September 7 at 10:00am and Closing Ceremony on Sunday, September 9 at 2:00 pm.
For 72 hours, over 200 American flags will decorate the lawn of Mercy Center to pay tribute to veterans, active members of the military, first responders, police officers, firefighters, and emergency responders. The Field of Honor is open to the public and the flags will be illuminated all night and guarded until dawn.
A tribute flag can be purchased for $25. If you would like to purchase a Tribute Flag, order forms are available at St. Rita Parish Office, contact Sr. Katherine Ann or go online to mercybridges.org
at the Notre Dame Retreat House - 5151 Foster Road in Canandaigua
This Year’s Theme is: “Faith, Hope and Love . . .”
Come, strengthen your roots so you might grow and bloom in your walk with Christ and others.
Please join us as we offer an opportunity for women, men and teens to enhance their prayer life.
This weekend away with the Lord is sure to be special!
The retreat begins about 8:00pm on Friday evening through noon on Sunday. We do ask that you get your room assignment and settle into your room by 7:30pm on Friday evening. This allows a little time before starting the retreat experience.
Pricing for Weekend Retreats Directed by Notre Dame Staff is as follows:
$150.00 for a single rooms
$120.00 for shared double room
$200.00 for a double room alone (private room)
These are SUGGESTED donations. As always, our policy is that the fee should never deter anyone from coming on retreat. For more information regarding the retreat house, check out their website: www.notredameretreat.org
WOMEN’S RETREAT WEEKEND will be held
Friday, September 14 – Sunday, September 16
For reservations or more information please contact
Darlene at (585) 797-0983 or email@example.com
MEN’S RETREAT WEEKEND will be held
Friday, October 26 – Sunday October 28
For reservations or more information please call
Jim Lajoie at 236-5716 or Nancy Lynch
at Notre Dame 585-394-5700
Perhaps now is the time. Please join me for a relaxing retreat from Sunday evening October 7th to Tuesday morning, October 9th at Mt. Irenaeus, a Franciscan Mountain Retreat House situated in the Allegany Mountains near Olean, NY, about a 2 hour drive from Webster. Their website, www.mounti.com, provides insight into their Gospel Mission of “Making All Things New” as well as practical information for your stay.
There are plenty of hiking trails and places to spend time in restful thought with our Lord, our companion and our friend. This is not a directed retreat and is meant to provide quiet, contemplative time for yourself or with others in the group. We live alongside the Friars and ease into their way of life with morning and evening prayer along with a Monday evening Mass and an opportunity for penance. We can accommodate about 12-15 people on this retreat. Spots will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. I will add people to a waiting list if needed. To register or if you have any questions, please email me at James.Fien@dor.org or call me at 585-233-0334.
Peace, Deacon Jim
at Holy Trinity Church
Save your gently used household items
Donations will be able to be dropped off Sunday, September 9 from 1-3 PM and Monday, September 10 from 10-2 PM. Please bring donations to Murphy Hall, Holy Trinity.
The sale begins Wednesday, September 12 6-8 PM. This evening is a preview of all our treasures and admittance is $5/person. Thursday, September 13 and Friday, September 14 the sale is from 10-4. Saturday everything is half price from 10-noon! Mark your calendars - this is Webster’s biggest garage sale. All proceeds are to help low-income people in our community.
If you are interested in volunteering please call 265-6694.