From the Rector: Easter Candle
Apr20

From the Rector: Easter Candle

Easter Candle: Did you ever wonder why we light the Paschal Candle during Mass all through the Easter Season? The Paschal candle represents Christ, the Light of the World. The pure beeswax of which the candle is made represents the sinless Christ who was formed in the womb of His Mother. The wick signifies His humanity, the flame, His Divine Nature, both soul and body. Five grains of incense inserted into the candle in the form of a cross recall the aromatic spices with which His Sacred Body was prepared for the tomb, and of the five wounds in His hands, feet, and side. During the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday night the deacon carries the candle in procession into the dark church. A new fire, symbolizing our eternal life in Christ, is kindled which lights the candle. The candle, representing Christ himself, is blessed by the Bishop who then inscribes in it a cross, the first letters and last of the Greek alphabet, (Alpha and Omega `the beginning and the end’) and the current year, as he chants the prayer below; then affixes the five grains of incense. The Easter candle is lighted each day during Mass throughout the Paschal season until Ascension Thursday. It is also lighted during Baptisms, and at funerals as a reminder of Baptism. (article by CNA)...

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From the Rector: Christ is Risen!
Apr13

From the Rector: Christ is Risen!

Congratulations to everyone who is receiving Sacraments leading up to and during the Easter Season! We want to rejoice with all those who have been Baptized, received Confirmation, First Holy Communion, Holy Matrimony, First Reconciliation, and Holy Orders, and to continue to pray with and for those who received Anointing of the sick during Lent. This pouring out of God’s Grace is especially joyful in connection with the celebration of His Resurrection at Easter. We will be praying this week for all of our young parishioners about to receive their First Reconciliation on Saturday and those who will receive First Holy Communion on Divine Mercy Sunday. Fifty days from now our young people will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation on Pentecost Sunday. I am so grateful to all of the many volunteers and staff who have worked throughout the school year to help prepare our candidates for their Sacraments.  Also those who have been sponsors for Baptism and Confirmation, and witnesses at weddings. This is a wonderful way to live out your own call to holiness in service of your brothers and sisters in Christ. Easter is the greatest feast in the Christian calendar. On this Sunday, Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. For Catholics, Easter Sunday comes at the end of 40 days of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving known as Lent. Through spiritual struggle and self-denial, we have prepared ourselves to die spiritually with Christ on Good Friday, the day of His Crucifixion, so that we can rise again with Him in new life on Easter. Easter is a day of celebration because it represents the fulfillment of our faith as Christians. Saint Paul wrote that, unless Christ rose from the dead, our faith is in vain (1 Corinthians15:17). Through his death, Christ saved mankind from bondage to sin and He destroyed the hold that death has on all of us; but it is His Resurrection that gives us the promise of new life, both in this world and the next. That is why people who are converting to Catholicism traditionally are baptized at the Easter Vigil service, which takes place on Holy Saturday (the day before Easter), starting sometime after sunset. They have usually undergone a long process of study and preparation known as the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA). Their baptism parallels Christ’s own Death and Resurrection, as they die to sin and rise to new life in the Kingdom of God. Because of the central importance of Easter to the Christian faith, the Catholic Church requires that all Catholics who have made their First Communion receive the Holy Eucharist  sometime during the Easter season which lasts through Pentecost, 50 days after Easter. (The Church also urges us to take part in the Sacrament of Confession before receiving this Easter...

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From the Rector: Committees
Mar31

From the Rector: Committees

At a recent meeting of the parish finance council, the members pointed out that it was once again time to make our financial reports available for examination, as is our policy, to any registered member of the Cathedral parish. Please call the parish office to make an appointment. In the coming months we will need to fill two seats on the finance council. One of the seats has been vacant and one member whose term has been fulfilled wishes to have their position filled by a new member. In the past these positions have generally been filled by the appointment of the Rector after consultation with the board. The board and I decided that it might be helpful to ask for nominations from the parish community of potential members who have qualifications related to professional accounting, banking, business administration or a related field.  If you know of parishioners who you think would be of help to the parish in this role, please write a letter to nominate them with a brief description of their qualifications. The board will consider these nominations and make recommendations for new members. Another aspect of administering the parish in which more help is needed is in reconstituting the parish building committee. This committee helps to identify, evaluate, and prioritize projects related to long term maintenance of the Cathedral Church building and parish facilities.  I would also like to ask for nominations from the parish community for potential members who have a professional background in building construction, landscaping, engineering, or another field connected to property management. My sincere thanks to those who have served in the past and to those who may be considering helping in the future. Please pray for all those involved in these important behind the scenes ways of serving our parish. -Fr. Keller...

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From the Rector: Daily Considerations for Lent
Mar24

From the Rector: Daily Considerations for Lent

Lent 2017 Daily considerations for Lent: Sunday, March 26: By your repentance, you can please your father God, as did the Prodigal Son. “Now we must celebrate and rejoice, because your brother was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.” (Gospel: Luke 15:32) Monday, March 27: Like the saints we should have confident recourse to Our Lord in all our needs. “As for me, I trust in the Lord. Let me be glad and rejoice in your mercy, for you have seen my affliction.” (Entrance antiphon) Tuesday, March 28: Be sure to thank God for the wonderful things he has done for you. “Come! Behold the deeds of the Lord, the astonishing things he has wrought on earth” (Resp. Psalm 46:9) Wednesday, March 29: Remember: God loves you more than all the mothers and fathers on earth put together love their children. “Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.” (First Reading: Is.49:15) Thursday, March 30: In your heart, seek God and do not doubt that you will find him. “Let the hearts that seek the Lord rejoice; turn to the Lord and his strength; constantly seek his face.” (Entrance antiphon) Friday, March 31: Never doubt that God hears your every request. “O God, save me by your name; by your power, defend my cause. O God, hear my prayer; give ear to the words of my mouth.”  (Entrance antiphon) Saturday, April 1: Since you know that trials, hardships and temptations will come your way, resolve to call upon God’s help. “In my anguish I called to the Lord, and from his holy temple he heard my voice” (Entrance antiphon) Sunday, April 2:  Keep in mind that after Lent –after Our Lord’s Passion and Death- comes his Resurrection to new life. “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live.” (Gospel: Jh 11:25...

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From Bishop Wall: This Lent, Give Your Heart to Christ, Who Loves You
Mar16

From Bishop Wall: This Lent, Give Your Heart to Christ, Who Loves You

From the Bishop: This Lent, Give Your Heart to Christ, Who Loves You We are now in the season of Lent, which begins on Ash Wednesday and concludes before the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Thursday of Holy Week. Lent is an opportunity given to us so that we might become more like Christ, the one who came into the world to save us from our sins and offer us eternal life. When we receive an opportunity, we must make sure we take full advantage, avoiding the temptation of either letting it pass by or giving a halfhearted approach to our Lenten observance. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church informs us, “by the solemn forty days of Lent the Church unites herself each year to the mystery of Jesus in the desert.” (CCC 540). There is no better companion on our Lenten journey than our Savior. Therefore, let us courageously make the conscious decision to unite ourselves to Jesus as he leads us into the desert. Lenten Observance The three basic tenants of Lent are prayer, fasting and almsgiving. They are external acts of penance which should affect our interior disposition and conform us closer to Jesus. Our Lenten observances, when properly approached, have the potential for a conversion of our hearts. This is the goal for the life of all Christians: conversion of heart so that we might become more like the one whom we profess as our Lord and God. It is important that we approach Lent with patience for others and for ourselves. Saint Francis de Sales wrote, “Have patience with all things, but first of all with yourself.” Prayer: The Catechism defines prayer as “The elevation of mind and heart to God in praise of His glory; a petition made to God for some desired good, or in thanksgiving for a good received, or in intercession for others before God. Through prayer the Christian experiences a communion with God through Christ in the Church”. The movement of the heart and mind toward our loving God is an act that expresses our gratitude to God for His generosity to us. Our act of prayer is also an expression of trust, as we take the disposition of a child, who relies upon his or her Heavenly Father, who will only give us what we need. Fasting: When we fast and abstain, it is imperative for the Christian to keep the Crucified Lord before our eyes, figuratively and literally. It is then that fasting and abstaining do not become an end in themselves, but rather the means by which we grow closer to and more like...

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From the Rector: Security
Mar09

From the Rector: Security

Church and Parking Lot Security As you may be aware there have been a number of incidents in the Church and parking lot of the Cathedral in the past few weeks. Three car windows have been broken and some items taken from cars while we were in the Church worshipping or at activities in the family center.  On one occasion something was stolen from a purse left unattended in the Church itself. The Police have been notified, and after the second break in we made the decision to employ security for the parking lot during the Sunday Masses.  Unfortunately even a visible deterrent wasn’t enough, and an incident occurred even with a security person on site.  A further decision was made to put cameras around the buildings to help monitor the grounds of the church. Please do not leave valuables visible in your car, and I’m sorry to add, don’t leave valuables unattended in the church. So far the items stolen have been a purse, a cell phone, and cash. It is hard to believe that people who are coming to pray would be targeted, but we have to accept that unfortunately not every one has been steeped in the Gospel message of treating one another as we wish to be treated, nor have all taken to heart the command not to steal. Let us pray for the conversion of the person or people responsible, and for the grace to be better Christians because of adversity rather than use it as an excuse to justify anger or look for retaliation. We must be prudent and diligent for the safety of our parishioners, without losing our peace. God Bless you, -Fr. Keller...

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From the Rector: Temptation
Mar06

From the Rector: Temptation

In the Readings for this Sunday we hear about Jesus being tempted in the desert. Here are some insights to that trial derived from the Catechism and the writings of Pope Benedict XVI from an article in the National Catholic Register. Jesus’ first trial: forbidden food The first trial is occasioned by the fact Jesus has been fasting for forty days, and so he is hungry. The devil invites him to violate the fast by using his powers as the Son of God to turn a stone into bread. This echoes Adam eating the forbidden fruit and Israel’s complaint against Moses for depriving them of the bread they had in Egypt by leading them into the wilderness. In rebuffing the devil, Jesus repeats Moses’ rebuke to the Israelites’ complaint (Deut. 8:3). Jesus’ second trial: false worship In the second trial (in St. Luke’s order of presentation), the devil offers Jesus all the kingdoms of the world if he will worship him. This reflects the influence that the devil had in the world order of the time, but which he would lose through Jesus’ actions (Rev. 11:15). It asks Jesus to play into the false, political understanding of the Messiah’s role that was popular at the time, but which Jesus himself rejected (John 18:36). It also echoes the temptation to false worship that the Israelites had in the desert, both at the incident of the Golden Calf (Ex. 32:4) and more generally (Lev. 17:7). Jesus rebuffs the devil by quoting Deuteronomy 6:13, reflecting the fundamental requirement of Israelite worship. Jesus’ third trial: testing God In the third trial (in Luke’s order), the devil tries to get Jesus to put God to the test. Since Jesus has been rebuffing him by quoting Scripture, the devil now quotes a statement from the Psalms (Ps. 91:11-12) as the basis for the trial. In doing so, he inverts the meaning of the Psalm, which says that those who trust in God will receive his protection. It does not say that people should take reckless risks or insist on miracles on demand to test whether God will keep his word. That is an attitude of dis-trust. Jesus recognizes this and quotes back to him Deuteronomy 6:16, in which Moses rebukes the Israelites for having put God to the test in the wilderness. What does this event reveal to us about Jesus, Adam, and the devil? The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: The evangelists indicate the salvific meaning of this mysterious event: Jesus is the new Adam who remained faithful just where the first Adam had given in to temptation. Jesus fulfills Israel’s vocation perfectly: in contrast to those who had once provoked...

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