We offer a very special welcome to Sister Mary Luke this weekend. Sister Mary Luke is a Benedictine Sister who served as principal of Christ the King School for nine years. Several years ago the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops established an annual second collection to benefit the Sisters, Brothers and religious order priests who faithfully served our parishes at a time when members of religious orders were not enrolled in Social Security. The collection benefits the retirement needs of these men and women who have selflessly served our parishes and the Church in the United States. Sister Mary Luke’s welcome presence among us is a reminder of the Sisters of Saint Benedict who served our school for decades. The second collection offers us an opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to these wonderful women. Welcome home, Sister Mary Luke!
This weekend we also enter the Second Week of Advent and our sense of anticipation grows as Christmas approaches. In reality, the calendar only affords us three weeks of Advent this year as the Fourth Sunday of Advent falls on December 24, which is, of course, Christmas Eve. This means we must use the days of Advent well to prepare for Christmas.
One of the ways of preparing for Christmas is making time to reflect on the big picture. The story of Christmas is a love story that began in the heart of God immediately after humankind’s fall from grace. Rather than give up on us, God devised a plan to redeem us, to bring us back to him. Over long centuries that plan unfolded and then culminated in the fullness of time when God sent his own beloved Son as the promised Messiah, the promised Savior, the promised Redeemer.
Finding time to reflect on the story will help us more fully appreciate the gift that was given on that first Christmas. Our Blessed Sacrament Chapel is open to parishioners twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. It affords a peaceful and quiet place to take it all in. The code to gain access to the chapel is available through the Parish Office. On the way to or on the way home from Christmas shopping, why not make a visit to the One who always has been and always will be the reason for the season?
Thank you to everyone who has taken a tag from the Giving Tree in the vestibule of the church. The gifts that will be delivered will make Christmas extra special for many families. Thank you to Stacey Hoaglin and the many volunteers who make this very special Christmas tradition possible.
See you at Mass!