A word from Pope Francis ~ “There is no freedom greater than letting yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit and allowing him to lead you wherever he wishes.”
On this first weekend of the month of June, we celebrate the feast of “The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.” Now that we have completed the Lent/ Easter cycle of our church year, we celebrate a few additional Solemnities of the Lord before we return to the steady cycle of Sundays in Ordinary Time. Last Sunday we celebrated the Feast of the Holy Trinity. Now we celebrate the second of our two special feasts – “The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ” (traditionally known as “Corpus Christi”). Apart from the dark themes of Holy Thursday night, we are able to celebrate and appreciate the tremendous gift of Christ’s presence among us through the gift of the Eucharist. Next Sunday we resume our Sunday celebrations in Ordinary Time, returning to the season at the 9th Sunday in Ordinary Time. We will be in this “green season” of the Church Year from then until December 2nd, the First Sunday of Advent.
Since the first Mass celebrated in our church, now chapel, was on Easter Sunday, March 27, 1921, the Eucharistic presence of the Lord has remained on our parish campus for 97 years. Three years ago we introduced the practice of honoring the continuing presence of the Eucharistic Lord in our parish by having an outdoor procession with the Eucharist immediately following the 1:00pm Mass. We will continue that custom this year with a similar outdoor procession immediately following the 1:00pm Mass. We will pause for prayer at different stations around our parish campus and conclude with Benediction in the Chapel. All are welcome to join us as we honor the Eucharist today. If you have attended an earlier Mass, you can join in the procession as we exit the main church at the southeast door.
Our parish Grade School completed its school year last Friday amid great rejoicing among students and faculty alike. We celebrated the Graduation Mass and Commencement of our St. Isidore Grade School Class of 2018 on Wednesday, May 23rd. 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.
Several weeks ago Bishop Conlon asked us to announce that he was transferring Father Clive Otieno to St. Walter parish in Roselle. Father Clive came to us three years ago as a newly-ordained priest. In our Diocese, the normal term for a priest in his first assignment is three years. He is then transferred to another parish for additional experience. He usually stays in that second assignment until such time as he is named Pastor of another parish. The official transfer date for priests serving in the Diocese of Joliet is the third Wednesday of June – this year June 20th. Most of the priests of our diocese who are being transferred this year from one parish assignment to another will be moving that week. We were blessed to have Father Clive with us as a Parochial Vicar for the first three years of his priestly ministry. As the weekend of June 16/17 will be his final weekend with us, we will say thank you and good-bye to him that weekend. While any new experience can be a cause for anxiety, I am very confident that Father Clive will serve well at St. Walter’s. Please join me in wishing him the very best in this new chapter in his life.
The assignment of our new Parochial Vicar, Father Rey Treyes, is also effective the same Wednesday, June 20th. Father Rey has previously served as Pastor of Immaculate Conception parish in Gilman and St. Peter parish in Piper City. We will have the opportunity to welcome him to our parish the weekend of June 23/24. We remember in prayer all those priests who are moving to a new parish assignment this month. .
Happy month of June! May God continue to bless us with everything that we need, and more.
Father Jim Murphy