February 4, 2024

On this first weekend in February, we celebrate the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time. With Ash Wednesday coming early on February 14, our kickoff date for the 2024 Catholic Ministries Annual Appeal is taking place this weekend at all Masses. Commitment Weekend will take place next weekend. The 2024 CMAA theme is “For the Glory of God.” Bishop Hicks will be sharing an important message with us next weekend during the homily. Our parish goal for the 2024 CMAA is $154,900. The diocesan goal for the Appeal is $8,662,000. All registered parishioners should have received the 2024 mailing from Bishop Hicks. If you have not responded to his request, please mail in your completed pledge form anticipating next weekend’s Commitment Sunday.

“The whole journey of life is a journey of preparation … to see, to understand the beauty of what lies ahead, of the homeland towards which we walk.”

Pope Francis

Our 2024 celebration of Catholic Schools Week got off to an excellent start last Sunday. The St. Isidore Catholic School community did a wonderful job of providing the music for last Sunday’s 10:00 am Mass. It was great to have our young people lead us in prayer at that Mass and serve in the liturgical ministries. There was a lot of energy in the air from the moment our students greeted us as we arrived for Mass. Our principal, Mrs. Corie Alimento, extended a genuine thank you to the parish community for our support of the school. The Knights of Columbus sponsored their traditional pancake breakfast and had the largest turnout ever! The Grade School Open House welcomed many prospective families into our building. It was an awesome kickoff for our annual celebration of Catholic Schools Week.

When I celebrated the Grade School Mass last Wednesday, I had the chance to thank the men and women who serve on our Grade School faculty and staff. It was interesting to tally the combined years of service given to the St. Isidore parish community by our school faculty and staff – 316 years of service in Catholic education at our school and a total of 636 years of service in education overall. This is an astounding number of years of service to our parish through our school, especially when we remember that our country will be 248 years old this July! We offer our prayers and thanks for our teachers, administrators, staff and all who share in the ministry of Catholic education.

With the season of Lent beginning in just 10 days, we will have Bishop Ken Untener’s “The Little Black Book” for the season of Lent 2024 available this weekend in time for your Lenten personal prayer. These “Little Books” have been very helpful in our daily prayer throughout the major seasons of the Church Year. This year’s book for Lent gives us six-minute daily meditations on the “Passion Narrative According to Luke.” The six-minute program begins on February 11 and continues each day of Lent. They are available in both English and Spanish.

We are now just three weeks away from our St. Isidore Dinner Dance and Silent Auction – “A Night in Morocco – School Gala.” This is a wonderful opportunity for coming together during the cold winter months to celebrate our parish’s Catholic Grade School. The Gala will be held on Saturday, February 24 beginning at 5:00 pm with dinner and the live auction following at 7:00 pm at Belvedere Banquets in Elk Grove Village. It promises to be a wonderful mid-winter evening spent with fellow parishioners. Call your friends! Plan on getting a table. This event benefits our school. Grand Raffle tickets are now available at the school office and website. Additional information is available at both the school office and elsewhere in the bulletin.

Happy Chinese New Year to our parishioners of Asian descent. The Year of the Dragon begins this Saturday, February 10.

We began the shortest month of the year last Thursday. The days are getting longer. Lent will soon begin, followed by Easter and spring. Notice the signs of new life all around us and take hope. As always, may God continue to bless us with all that we need, and more.

– Father Jim Murphy