Some Things Ahead

04-15-2018From Our PastorFr. Brian Jazdzewski

First of all, Happy Easter once again! Those who were able to attend any of the services on Holy Week and Easter weekendwere once again filled with grace. A word of gratitude once again to those who assisted with the liturgies and church environmentto make these days of grace more enriching. An additional word of gratitude is given to the members of the Church of SaintBoniface who so graciously hosted us during the days of the Holy Triduum. May God bless us one and all!

Holy Week and Easter were supported by the grace-filled hours of Divine Mercy Sunday. I hope you will continue to enjoy theresources which were made available to you around the days of Divine Mercy Sunday. A good crowd was gathered in theChurch of Saint Lawrence to usher in Divine Mercy into our lives, our area and the lives of those we love. Also, a word ofgratitude is extended to the members of the Church of Saint Lawrence who provided the hospitality for the meal andrefreshments after the 3 o’clock hour of mercy. “For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the wholeworld.”

You may also have some grist for conversation with the young people in your life who are currently Freshmen or Sophomores. We journeyed together to La Crosse on Saturday morning to take in the beauty and lessons from our diocesan Cathedral of SaintJoseph the Workman and the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe. There is a lot of Catholic richness within these sites which areso close to our homes. Perhaps you will visit these sites soon?

Looking ahead, we enjoy these weeks of the Easter Season. In the midst of them we will enjoy celebrating the Lord’s Ascensionand Pentecost Sunday. We also know that in late spring we will celebrate the Holy Trinity and Corpus Christi. Also, First HolyCommunion Sunday comes on the final weekend of April. We will also have some sort of May Crowning in early May andobserve both Mother’s and Father’s Day. I’m sure there’s more so we do our part to observe these religious and secular days inthe presence of God.

Also, as I plan for summer within our parish cluster, there are countless projects and commitments. Among them is scheduling in the annual Missionary Cooperative Program through the Diocese of La Crosse. The Program is mandated in every parish in theDiocese of La Crosse on an annual basis. Most of us are familiar with the annual visits from missionaries to make appeal fortheir mission. I can remember missionaries coming to my parish as a child and throughout my adult and pastoring years. I knowmany of us are gratified in hearing about their experience and perspective and we do our best to respond with some financialgenerosity. The dates have not yet been finalized, but many of us look forward to the missionary visit.

Our Office receives regular requests from various mission organizations independent from the Diocesan Program. I continue toprotect you from a regular diet of appeals; most agree that we have enough. I do thank you for supporting the various youngpeople who have made appeal along with the olive wood carving vendors we periodically schedule to come. Also, your weeklygenerosity and support of other diocesan collections and the Diocesan Annual Appeal are part of the reason our doors remainopen for us and others to come here to pray. After all, the primary concern for the Church is to deepen our faith.

Another aspect of looking forward to missionary visits is a break from your Pastor. Often, the missionary visit is a built-in way for me to be away from the parish for a weekend. As you may have deduced from last week’s article, finding help is difficult. Often it’s more relaxing for me to take mid-week getaways rather than working on finding a priest to cover weekend Masses. So, the missionary visits benefits many people, not just those who are recipients of your generosity. May God continue to bless each of us and this marvelous Catholic Church into which He has invited us for membership to strengthen the faith of one another.