July 9, 2023

As we move into these middle weeks of July, we celebrate the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time this weekend. We are nearing the midpoint of the summer. All through this year, we have been reading from the Gospel of St. Matthew in our Sunday Gospel readings. Week by week, we are seeing Matthew’s portrayal of Jesus’ ministry unfold before us. This week, we see Jesus giving praise to God for revealing himself to us. How does God do this? We come to know God through the person of Jesus. Jesus is the reflection of God to us. Then Jesus gives us a simple invitation – he invites all of us who are exhausted and weighed down to come to him and to take rest in him and be refreshed. Even though we have invented clever machines which should enable us to rest, we are busier than ever, fretfully texting, messaging, posting. In the midst of all of our activity, he invites us to step aside and find rest in our relationship with him. This is a message we really do need to hear.   

“Situations can change; people can change, be the first to bring good. Do not grow accustomed to evil, but defeat it with God.”

Pope Francis

Thank you for the good wishes and prayers you extended to Father Dandu as he celebrated his final weekend with us last weekend. Following his term as a Parochial Vicar here, he has been transferred to St. Mary of Gostyn parish in Downers Grove. We were blessed to have him serving our parish over the past three years. We promise him the support of our prayers as he begins this new chapter in his life.

Following Father Rey’s retirement and Father Dandu’s transfer, we are very happy to welcome Father Ramon Sida and Father Benzes Thomas, O.Praem. to our parish as our new Parochial Vicars. Their appointments began this past Monday. Father Ramon was born in Joliet, but raised in Mexico. He is fully bilingual. He was ordained in Joliet three years ago and has been serving at St. Mary Immaculate parish in Plainfield. Father Benzes is a Norbertine priest, and he recently came to our country from India. He was ordained in 2000. He is assigned full time to St. Isidore, but he will reside at St. Phillip’s parish in Addison, where he will live in community with another Norbertine priest who serves there as the pastor. I have asked both of them to introduce themselves at each of our Masses this weekend. We are blessed to continue to have three full-time priests serving our parish. Please join me in giving Father Ramon and Father Benzes a “St. Isidore Welcome” to our parish community. We pray that it will not be long before they feel truly at home here with us.

Thank you to our Father John Guiney Knights of Columbus Council for again supplying and placing the American flags around the parish grounds for the Fourth of July weekend. They set the tone for our prayer together at our Fourth of July Mass.   

During this time of year, our parish staff normally shifts into our summer hours. We are continuing our practice of closing the parish offices on Fridays during July. One of our staff will be on duty for telephone calls and deliveries. This practice gives our staff some additional time for family activities.

We remember those who are away on vacation and all those who are traveling. And we thank God for the opportunities to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors. May God continue to bless us with all that we need, and more.

– Father Jim Murphy