Fr. Peter's Post

AS WE ENTER INTO HOLY WEEK: 

We enter into Holy Week with Palm Sunday this weekend.  The palm branch symbolized victory in Ancient Rome and the Ancient Near East.  It was used in depictions of military victories and was awarded to athletes who were victorious. The crowds greeted the Lord Jesus with palm branches as he entered into the holy city of Jerusalem.  They thought he was going to claim political/military power to overthrow the Romans.  He knew his mission was much greater than that---he was to defeat our mortal enemy: sin.  The Lord accomplished his victory by taking all our sins onto himself in his death on the cross.   
 
I invite you to join us on Facebook Live for the liturgies of Holy Week.  Please see Holy Week 2020 for a complete schedule of services, confessions and open church hours for both the Cathedral and St. Mary Star of the Sea.  Some highlights of Holy Week: 
  • Palm Sunday, April 5:  Fr. Paul and I will bless palms at Masses this weekend and you will be able to come to church and take blessed palms home for yourself and your friends and neighbors.  They will be waiting for you at our church entrances. The 5 PM and 10:30 AM Masses will be livestreamed.  
  • Holy Thursday, April 9:  The Mass of the Lord’s Supper will be livestreamed at 7 PM. 
  • Good Friday, April 10:  The Liturgy and Passion will be livestreamed at 12 PM.  The cross will be placed on the outdoor Cathedral steps between the hours of 1 PM and 7 PM for veneration.  St. Mary Star of the Sea will be open for veneration of the cross between the hours of 12 PM and 3 PM.  
  • Holy Saturday, April 11:  There will be a Blessing of Easter Food at 12:30 PM at the Cathedral and at St. Mary Star of the Sea.  The Vigil Mass will be livestreamed at 8 PM.   
  • Easter Sunday, April 12:  The 10:30 AM Mass will be livestreamed.   

LET US KEEP EACH OTHER CLOSE IN PRAYER DURING THIS CRISIS: We need each other’s prayers more than ever during this crisis. While we go through this time of uncertainty know that the Lord Jesus is with us. Open your heart to him and call on him every day in moments of prayer. He will be with us through this time and many graces will be given to us as we help each other through this crisis.

PLEASE TAKE PRECAUTIONS NOT TO SPREAD VIRUSES: We have now suspended handshaking at the Sign of Peace and Communion from the Chalice with the Precious Blood. We have also removed Holy Water from from church fonts. If you would like water blessed for your personal use Fr. Paul and I are always willing to do so. Please make sure you wash your hands before you come to church, use hand sanitizer whenever possible, and cover your cough with your arm. Let’s keep each other healthy during this crisis.

SOUP SUPPERS ARE CANCELLED: Soup Suppers have been cancelled for the rest of the Lenten Season.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS WILL CONTINUE: Stations of the Cross will take place Wednesdays at 5:30 in both of our churches. Please maintain six feet of distance between you and the next person in the pew.

LENTEN MISSION IS CANCELLED: The Lenten Mission with Fr. Glenn Sudano is cancelled. I spoke to Fr. Glenn by phone and he said he wants to return at a future time and will “take a rain check”. We look forward to having him back next year if at all possible.

PLEASE CONTINUE TO SUPPORT YOUR PARISH FINANCIALLY: As we move through the coming weeks please keep up with your financial contributions to your parish if at all possible. Our mission to care for the poor, the infirm, and the elderly continues as does our mission to educate our children and youth. This crisis will be hard on our parish----harder still if you don’t continue to support us. I understand that some of you will not be able to contribute to the parish because of the way this crisis is affecting you and your loved ones. If that is the case, please pray for your parish during this difficult time.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS & SOUP SUPPERS: This week we will begin having Stations of the Cross and Soup Suppers. The start time for Stations will be 5:30 p.m. at both the Cathedral and St. Mary Star of the Sea (please note the earlier time @ SMSS). Soup Supper will follow Stations and at St. Mary Star of the Sea a program will follow the Soup Supper.  

BISHOP BARRON’S “LETTER TO A SUFFERING CHURCH”: At Ash Wednesday Masses we distributed copies of Bishop Barron’s “Letter to a Suffering Church”. We will be discussing this small book about the state of the Church in the wake of the clerical abuse scandals and where we go from here. I invite you to read the book and join us either after March Adoration times at the Cathedral or after Soup Suppers at SMSS the first three Wednesdays in March.  

ASH WEDNESDAY MASS SCHEDULE: Lent begins with Ash Wednesday this coming week. Masses for Ash Wednesday are as follows: 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. at the Cathedral and 12:10 and 6:00 p.m. at St. Mary Star of the Sea. Ashes will be distributed at each of these Masses and the school children and youth will be attending the Cathedral Masses, but everyone is welcome! 

ASH WEDNESDAY COLLECTION FOR THE POOR: The collection at Ash Wednesday Masses will be for outreach to the poor. At St. Mary Star of the Sea it will go to our “Helping Hands Fund” and at the Cathedral to the “Cathedral Cares Fund”. 

MASS @ WOMEN’S CARE CENTER TUESDAY: Mass will be celebrated at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday February 25th. 

WE HAVE ROOM FOR YOUR MASS INTENTIONS: It is an ancient Christian practice to pray for the dead. In fact, we do it at every celebration of Holy Mass. The priest is also happy to offer his Mass for a particular intention and you hear that intention mentioned at the beginning of daily Mass or at the end of the Intercessions on Sunday. If you would like a Mass offered for a deceased loved one or for a special intention, please call the parish office and our secretaries will be happy to arrange that. We currently have openings in the coming months. 

LENTEN MISSION: I am happy to announce that we will again be able to provide a Lenten Mission this year. Fr. Glenn Sudano who was with us two years ago will be returning and preaching on how God’s grace works in our lives. Save the dates for this Lenten retreat: March 23-25th. 

PRAYER FOR A NEW BISHOP: We have begun to pray for a new bishop at the end of the Intercessions at Mass. This will take the place of the Vocations Prayer until a new bishop has been selected for our diocese. It will probably take about a year for the selection process to unfold.

KC BREAKFAST BUFFET TO BENEFIT STELLA MARIS ACADEMY:I would like to thank my brother Knights for putting on a delicious Breakfast Buffet today (Sunday February 2nd). Please join us for some great food from 9:00 a.m. to Noon in the Gymnasium at Holy Rosary. All proceeds will go to support the important mission of Stella Maris Academy! Thank you, Cathedral KCs for putting on this breakfast for our school!

CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK JANUARY 26TH-FEBRUARY 2ND: Catholic Schools Week begins next weekend with a “Kick-Off Mass” on Sunday January 26th at the Cathedral featuring our students assisting in roles during the Liturgy. WE ARE SO BLESSED TO HAVE A CATHOLIC SCHOOL! So many great things happen at Stella Maris Academy’s three campuses!

Did you know that we have students not only from the Cathedral but from St. Mary Star of the Sea at Stella Maris Academy and that both our parishes are committed to providing financial and other support for SMA? Thank you for supporting our Catholic School!

WE CELEBRATE THE SAVIOR’S BIRTH THROUGH JANUARY 12TH: We celebrate Christ’s birth not just on December 25th but throughout a whole season of Christmas feasts that includes the Feast of the Holy Family, Mary Mother of God, Epiphany, and the Baptism of the Lord.  This last Christmas feast will take place on Sunday January 12th.    

The Child born of Mary came to save us from our sinful isolation and share His Divine life with us.  Let the Savior touch your heart.  Give him your burdens.  I pray that you allow Him to enter your life in a new way this Christmas. 

FR. PAUL ON VACATION JANUARY 9-16TH: Fr. Paul will be away on a long-scheduled vacation January 9th through the 16th.

FR. PETER TRAVELS TO ROME JANUARY 10-20TH: Fr. Peter has been asked by the Diocesan Administrator to accompany him to Rome for the “Ad Limina” visit being made by the Bishops of our region. Bishops visit the Holy Father every five years to pray at the tombs of the Apostles Peter and Paul and to meet with the Holy Father. With the unexpected death of Bishop Sirba, Fr Jim Bissonette (Diocesan Administrator) will represent our diocese and has asked me to make the trip as well. It is customary for Bishops to bring a priest with them.

THERE WILL BE A LIMITED WEEKDAY MASS SCHEDULE JAN 9-20TH: There will be weekdays without Mass in our parishes during this time. While Deacon Ted will do Communion Services at 12:10 at St. Mary Star of the Sea when he is able there will be not 7:00 a.m. morning Mass at the Cathedral January 10 or January 13-16th.  HOWEVER, THERE WILL BE A REGULAR SUNDAY MASS SCHEDULE while Fr. Paul and Fr. Peter are away.

MASSES FOR SOLEMNITY OF MARY THE MOTHER OF GOD (JAN 1ST): The Solemnity of Mary The Mother of God occurs every January 1st.  We will mark this feast day with a Vigil Mass at St. Mary Star of the Sea December 31st at 6:00 p.m. and with Mass on New Year’s Day at the Cathedral at 9:00 a.m. 

MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO MAKE OUR LITURGIES SO BEAUTIFUL: I would like to thank all of our talented musicians and choir members for the beautiful music they provide us at Christmas time.  Their work and the work of all those who so beautifully decorate our churches help us honor and worship the Divine Christ Child!  Thank you for sharing your talents with us! 

TUESDAY HOLY HOURS MOVE TO 6:00 P.M. IN THE NEW YEAR: We will continue to have Adoration/Holy Hours on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday each month at the Cathedral of Our Lady.  However, starting in January they will occur a half hour earlier to allow better for other activities afterwards.  So, beginning January 7th Adoration will take place from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m.