PASTOR’S REFLECTION FOR DECEMBER 17, 2017

Dear Parishioners,

This Sunday we celebrate “Gaudette Sunday” in joyful anticipation of the Lord’s coming. As we light the pink candle, we are fast approaching the Christmas feast. Jesus is coming in a new and fresh way to bring us His love and peace. He is coming as our divine physician to heal us of our spiritual sickness and to help us be transformed more into His likeness.

Many people at the time of the first Christmas were unaware that the Messiah was born. Unfortunately, the same is true this Christmas. Many will be unaware that the Lord is coming and there will be no room for Him in their hearts. In fact, we find that the Lord has been evicted in many areas of the public arena today. He is the light and if we turn off the light, all that is left is darkness. As we look at the world today we see the darkness of hate, prejudice, self-centeredness, and violence. We need Christmas. We need Jesus to be born anew in our world and in our hearts. Let us rejoice that the light is approaching. Let us invite Him into our lives and may His light shine in us and touch those we meet each day.

There will be a book distributed after the Masses this Christmas. You can find more information on page 5 of this week’s bulletin.

The Christmas Collection will be a diocese-wide collection to benefit the Clergy Health and Trust which cares for the needs of 590 priests in the Archdiocese of Boston. Your support helps care for their health and well-being in retirement. You can learn more about the Clergy Health and Retirement Trust and make a gift online at clergytrust.org or follow them on Facebook @Clergytrust. Also, new this year, parishioners can donate $25 from their cell phones by texting the word PRIEST25 to 20222. Thank you in advance for your prayers and support of our retired and active priests.

This year, Christmas falls on a Monday. Next weekend on Saturday evening and Sunday morning, we celebrate the 4th Sunday of Advent.  On Sunday evening and Monday morning, we celebrate the birth of Christ.  Both are important celebrations with different liturgies.  One cannot take the place of the other. To explain the Mass Schedule for the coming weekend, we will have the same Sunday schedule with the exception of the 5:30 p.m. Mass on Sunday. Our Sunday Mass Schedule will end with the 11:00 a.m. Mass on Sunday. Our Christmas Mass Schedule will begin on Sunday at 4:00 p.m. It will end with the 11:00 a.m. Mass on Monday, Christmas Day. What a blessing that you will be attending two Masses on the Christmas weekend! On New Year’s weekend, the Mass Schedule will be the same since the feast of Mary, Mother of God falls on a Monday this year. It is a holy day but not obligatory to go to Mass.

A good way to prepare for Christmas is to go to confession and cleanse our souls. I will be available for confession next week on the following days:

Monday, December 18 from 2:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Tuesday, December 19 from 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, December 20 from 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, December 21 from 1:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Friday, December 22 from 7:30 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.

May Jesus continue to shepherd you in all of your needs.

God love you,