Here is some inspiration for growth in wisdom and holiness from Pope St. John XXIII. It's called "The Daily Decalogue of Pope John XXIII." Happiness has a lot to do with our outlook and determination to live one day at a time. Following these steps will make a big difference. Pray for the grace to truly carry them out and see what happens!
You may have noticed recently some staff members and parishioners wearing white Holy Family T-shirts with our new parish logo and wondered what the words on the back of the shirt mean. The words imprinted there are: Foster – Transform – Empower. It comes from our Holy Family Parish Vision Statement developed by our pastoral staff and endorsed by our Parish Pastoral Council. It can be found at the bottom of the Welcome Message page on the I'm New dropdown tab of our parish website.
Here it is and what it means:READ MORE
A parishioner recently shared a disheartening story with me regarding an encounter her daughter had with a pro-abortion proponent. It highlights what young people can face these days on college campuses from some strident activists. While this parishioner's married daughter was working on a pro-life display, she left her one-year old son with her single sister. As she was holding the baby boy in her arms on the campus eating her lunch, a woman came up to her and handed her a card advertising an abortion clinic with her telephone number on it. She told the young woman to contact her the next time she gets pregnant so that "this (the child) does not happen again." Saint Mother Teresa addressed such callousness when she said, "The so-called right to abortion has portrayed the greatest gifts – a child – as a competitor, an intrusion and an inconvenience." And this attitude is being fostered by a "throw-away" culture.READ MORE
Our parish, like all families, sometimes struggle to make ends meet. This happens to be the case for our parish family. With a significant decrease in church attendance over the last several months, we've also experienced a decrease in the offertory collection income we depend on each week to meet our regular expenses. Certainly, many factors contribute to the drop in church attendance, not the least of which is a decline in the level of importance people attribute to the practice of their faith. Churches across all denominations are experiencing this same phenomenon. It can be a source of sadness for us all as we see fewer of our family members, friends and neighbors worshiping with us here at Holy Family. We miss them!READ MORE
Attending Mass is the most important thing Catholics do each week, but even the most committed can fall into a Sunday slump. So, consider these ideas to make the Lord's Day truly special.
Attend Mass somewhere new. Occasionally being in a different environment can help us look at Mass with fresh eyes and give us new perspective. We can be reminded that the Catholic faith is universal. There are people in small towns and big cities all over the world who come together at Mass to praise God.
Get away. Plan a day trip around attending Mass. There are churches that have mosaics, relics and amazing art. Find the closest basilica or cathedral, or a Catholic church with a history. Attend Mass there and then find other activities in the town to do.READ MORE
It's hard to believe that school begins this week. And, coming up in just a few weeks will be a new Faith Formation program here at Holy Family, entitled Bridge. The goal of this program is to help people of all ages to grow in their faith no matter what stage of life one is in. Our Catholic faith is meant to connect with the way we live our lives, to be a link to Jesus and others. We hope it will build bridges among generations as we learn and practice our faith together, and encourage each other to be true disciples of Jesus. Having successfully launched a program of faith formation for parents and children in Grades 1 and 2 here at Holy Family for the last couple of years with much positive feedback from parents, it was decided to expand this style of faith formation to include Grades K through 8.READ MORE
I hope you've been enjoying the summer whether it's a "stay-cation" here in the beautiful area in which we live or some special "get-away." Having a different schedule, a slower pace of life, time to relax with family and friends, and opportunities to have some adventures traveling, provide an opportunity to reflect on how precious our own life is and the lives of those whom God has blessed us with. It can be a time to make connections with where God is in those relationships, the beauty and goodness found in both the ordinary and the extraordinary around us. What you and I are able to enjoy in what we see and experience is fundamentally a gift not made by human hands. Why not acknowledge that and take time to count your blessings. A wonderful game you can play with your children or grandchildren is: "Where can you see evidence of God and His goodness?" Let their little minds and hearts wonder aloud and celebrate what God is doing in our world and in our lives. Discussions about the marvels of nature and God's loving care for us could become a cause for celebration!READ MORE
One warm, sunny day, while cooking supper for his family on a grill in a park, a stranger of a different race and culture called over to me and offered me a place to sit in my beach chair, which was closer to his space. His offer was completely unsolicited. I didn’t have my clerical collar on at the time. He just saw where I was situated and noted that the place nearer his area was cleaner and more level than where I was sitting. This kind stranger went out of his way to invite me to a more comfortable spot next to his.READ MORE
This Thursday, July 4th is the 243rd anniversary of the founding of our country. For it was on this day in 1776, the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence, setting the 13 original colonies on the road to freedom as a sovereign nation. At that time, there were an estimated 2.5 million people living in this newly established nation. Presently, close to 330 million people call the United States their home. We have so much to be thankful to God for as citizens of this great country. We have come a long way over those years, not without much struggle, heartache, sacrifice and perseverance. And yet, we still face challenges and hurtles to “form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.” (Preamble of the Constitution) In a special way this week, I invite you to keep in prayer our country and its leaders, our service men and women, and all who work to address the challenges that threaten the welfare and peace of a nation. Below is a prayer you are welcome to use or, even better, why not make up your own. Have a happy and safe Independence Day!READ MORE
Recently, while waiting with another parishioner on an athletic field for their children to finish a game, a member of our Parish Pastoral Council heard this parent express her consternation at the idea of having to pay a faith formation fee for her child’s religious education. The idea of having to support the church financially seemed onerous to her. The Council member helped her to understand that Holy Family Parish depends on the funds parishioners provide in order to pay staff salaries/ benefits, utilities, maintenance costs, supplies and much more. Holy Family cannot not operate without parishioners’ contributions. The truth is, Faith Formation fees cover only a portion of the costs of that area of ministry. The parish doesn’t receive support from the state or the Archdiocese, but only from local parishioners who contribute to their parish.READ MORE
Next Sunday, June 23, the Catholic Church around the world will celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, traditionally known as "Corpus Christi" - Latin for the Body of Christ.
This feast's origins go back to the 13th century and not long after that, a tradition of processing with the Holy Eucharist was started. In many Catholic countries, it has been a regular practice. However, in our own country, it has not been very common to have a Corpus Christi procession. But, a growing number of parishes here in the U.S. are reviving the practice. In fact, Church law promotes such a procession stating, "Wherever in the judgment of the diocesan Bishop it can be done, a procession through the streets is to be held, especially on the solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, as a public witness of veneration of the Blessed Eucharist." (Canon 944, # 1)
And so, we will continue the tradition we started two years ago here at Holy Family and will have a short Eucharistic Procession immediately following the 10:30 am Mass next Sunday.READ MORE
I have a fond recollection of the owner of a one-man service station near my hometown in South Quincy. Our family would bring our car regularly to Joe Iacobucci to have it serviced as well as to get our gas. He was a wonderful character who wore a handlebar style mustache, suspenders and sometimes a cowboy hat. One couldn’t help but notice the fuselage of an airplane he was building in the left bay of his garage.
He was a rather quiet man, but always pleasant. Joe was someone we could rely on to do an excellent job keeping our car safe and in good condition. He was someone we liked, who was honest and we could depend on him. He was our friend.READ MORE