Now that our observance of Lent and celebrations of the Easter season are concluded, and we have celebrated the major Solemnities of Trinity Sunday and the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, we now return to the cycle of Sundays in Ordinary Time. We re-enter this season at the 11th week where we left the season at the beginning of Lent. We will continue reading from Mark’s Gospel, section by section, until we begin the season of Advent on November 29th. Ordinary Time reminds us that we are called to steady and regular growth as we celebrate the ordinary events of Jesus’ life. It is good to be back in this regular cycle of our Church Year.
Our parish Grade School completed its school year last Thursday amid great rejoicing among students and faculty alike. On Thursday, June 4th, we celebrated the Graduation Mass and Commencement of our St. Isidore 8th Grade School Class of 2015. Just as the Lord Jesus grew in “age, wisdom and grace,” so too have our young people. We congratulate our graduates, their parents, and our Grade School administration, faculty and staff on a job well done. It has been a very good year for our school. Now that our school year has concluded, please note that we will not be celebrating the weekly School Mass at 8:15am on Wednesdays. Weekday Masses will be celebrated Monday through Friday at 7:00am and 12:05pm and Saturdays at 8:15am. We also celebrate a weekly Mass at 2:00pm on Tuesdays at our Nursing Homes, alternating each week between Lexington Nursing Home and West Suburban Nursing Home.
On Friday, June 5th, we held our St. Isidore Parish Volunteer Appreciation Night. Volunteers from the many different ministries of our parish came together in the Ministry Center as we honored them and thanked them for all that they do for our parish. Even though many at the event asked how they could help, we as a parish staff saw this as an important moment for us to serve you, our volunteers. We also had the opportunity to present our 2015 St. Isidore the Farmer Award to a few of our long-time volunteers of our parish. Honored that evening were Linda Galvez, Enna Evans and Sharon and Frank Zappa. Each of these parishioners has served in many of our different ministries at different times. Consistently, whenever and wherever they saw a need, they stepped in and did whatever they were able to do. And each one continues to be active as volunteers in our many ministries. Thank you to them and each one of you who volunteer in countless ways at our parish.
Also at the Parish Volunteer Appreciation Night, we were able to recognize all of our teens who served as volunteers over the past year and honor them with our CONNECT Youth Ministry Awards. Many of our teens are involved in so many different aspects of parish life. It was good to take notice of the ways our teens contribute to the life of our parish and live their lives as disciples of the Lord Jesus. As they came in with their parents, I couldn’t help but notice that the habit of serving was learned in their families. In addition to the St. Isidore the Farmer Awards, we were able to present the CONNECT Youth Ministry’s Pastor’s Youth Leadership Award to Stephanie Gulik and Michael Koss. Congratulations to them and all of our teens who are faithfully following in the steps of Jesus the servant.
Thank you to Father Matt and all who worked with him in coordinating last Sunday’s outdoor Eucharistic procession from the church to the chapel. I could not think of a better way to celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ than with our Eucharistic procession. And what better way could we observe the 95 years of continued Eucharistic presence of the Lord on our parish campus. We were able to stop at a few key stations along the route – cemetery, school and rectory, and pray for the various needs of our parish before concluding with Benediction in the Chapel. Our general consensus at the conclusion was to make this a regular practice on the Feast in our parish. Plans are already underway for next year! Thank you again to all who made this possible.
Also, thank you to all who have pledged to the 2015 Joliet Diocesan Catholic Ministries Annual Appeal. Our pledges support the work of the diocese, our larger church. Thank you to the 1038 households who have pledged and paid $106,182 towards our parish goal of $161,241. Your generosity is deeply appreciated. Please continue to make your monthly payments on your pledge. If you haven’t had a chance to respond to the 2015 Joliet Diocesan Catholic Ministries Annual Appeal, please do so as soon as possible. We have additional commitment envelopes at the Parish Office and the Hospitality Desk in the Church. A follow-up letter from the Diocesan Development Office was recently sent to those who have previously pledged in past years, but have not responded this year. Again, thank you for your support of our larger diocesan church.
May God continue to bless us with all that we need, and more.
Father Jim Murphy