May 12, 2024

Happy Mother’s Day! We wish God’s choicest blessings on all of the mothers, grandmothers, Godmothers and stepmothers of our parish. May God bless you for all of the wonderful things that you do. And in a special way, as we gather around the table of the Lord, we remember our mothers who now live the fullness of life with the Lord. We pray God reward you for your goodness as you continue to pray for us in God’s presence.

“A mother defends herself with a heart filled with love before doing so with words.”

Pope Francis

We also want to remember those for whom this day brings incredible pain. Many couples, most unknown to others, struggle with infertility and the inability to become parents. Others may be alienated from their parents or their children, and this holiday only intensifies that pain. Please know that you have a special place in our prayer today.

We continue our celebration of Easter with the feast of the Ascension. Normally, this feast is celebrated on the 40th day of Easter, which would have been last Thursday. Twenty-five years ago, our Bishops received permission to transfer the observance of the feast to the nearest Sunday. This had already been the practice in the western states of our country. The Bishops of the state of Illinois agreed to make the transfer, which took effect in May 2000. With the feast of Pentecost coming up next Sunday, we now move into the final days of the Easter Season.

During this final week of the Easter Season, we join with the Apostles and Mary, as they waited for the Risen Lord to fulfill his promise to send the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit strengthens us in our efforts to be better disciples of the Lord and to put his values and teachings into practice more and more in our lives. St. Paul tells us that the gifts of the Spirit are “love, joy, peace, patient endurance, kindness, generosity, faith, mildness and chastity” (Galatians 5:22-23). Wherever these gifts are found, the Spirit of God is present. Conversely, if we are lacking in any of these gifts, we have yet to fully open our hearts to the presence of God’s Spirit in our lives. Notice that St. Paul does not included anger, resentment, bickering, grudges, prejudice, or a judgmental or unforgiving heart among the gifts of the Spirit. These all come from another spirit! As we prepare to celebrate the feast of Pentecost next Sunday, it is important that we pray for an outpouring of all of these gifts of the Spirit upon ourselves, our parish and our larger church.

Thank you to all who helped make our parish May Crowning at last Sunday’s 10:00 am Mass such a beautiful celebration. May has traditionally been dedicated to honoring Mary, the Mother of Jesus. Our parish May Crowning was led by representatives of our St. Isidore Catholic School 8th grade class, the officers of our Council of Catholic Women and our CCW Woman of the Year – Mrs. Pat Murray. And thank you to the choir for leading us in song.  

Wednesday, May 15 is the Feast of St. Isidore the Farmer. This is our patronal feast day and a major feast for our parish. Three daily Masses on Wednesday (7:00 am, 8:15 am with the school and 12:05 pm) will honor the Feast of St. Isidore the Farmer – our patron.

The annual Joliet Diocesan Priesthood Ordination Mass will be celebrated this Saturday, May 18 at St. Raymond’s Cathedral in Joliet. Deacon Luis Ron is scheduled to be ordained a priest for our diocese. He spoke and shared his vocation story at our parish on Vocation Sunday two years ago. We promise him the support of our prayers as he prepares for his ordination and the beginning of his priestly ministry among us.

Congratulations to all of our graduates and welcome home to our college students who are making their way home following their Spring Semester Exams. Some still have exams to take. Know that you are remembered in prayer here at your parish. It is great to see you back in the neighborhood. Thank you for joining with us again at our Sunday Mass celebrations.   

Enjoy the beauty of the spring. May God continue to bless us with all that we need, and more.

– Father Jim Murphy