FROM THE PASTOR’S CORNER:
A word from Pope St. John Paul II ~ “Prayer finds its source in God’s holiness and it is at the same time our response to this holiness.”
Today we celebrate the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time. With our Easter celebration coming very late this year on April 12th, Ash Wednesday is not observed until February 26th. This gives us a longer period of Ordinary Time during the January/February months of this year. We have a chance to hear some of the key introductory sessions of Matthew’s Gospel – our primary Gospel for this year.
It is now less than two more weeks to go! The St. Isidore Gala, “Viva Las Vegas!” – our annual auction dinner and dance benefitting our parish Catholic school will be held on Saturday, February 22nd at Belvedere Events & Banquets on Devon Avenue in Elk Grove Village. Tickets are available for $80 per person. The banquet facility is located next door to the Country Inn and Suites which provides a nice option for those who would like to make it a Gala Getaway weekend. The “Viva Las Vegas!” Gala begins at 5:00pm with Silent Auction bidding, Hors D’oeuvres and cocktails. Dinner and the Live Auction items follow. It promises to be a wonderful mid-winter evening spent with fellow parishioners. Please consider joining with us or even gathering a table of your friends. Additional information is available elsewhere in the bulletin.
Since Easter is a bit later this year (April 12th), Lent has a later beginning on Ash Wednesday – February 26th. The Kick-Off date of the 2020 Catholic Ministries Annual Appeal is scheduled to happen next weekend at all Masses — Saturday/Sunday, February 15/16. The in-pew Commitment Weekend will be the following weekend, February 22/23.
The 2020 CMAA theme is, “Be Kind and Merciful.” In the Sermon on the Mount in the Gospel of Matthew, we learn about what was important to Jesus. It is in this sermon that Jesus teaches us to “turn the other cheek” and to “love our enemies.” These teachings wee challenging to his disciples in biblical times, but they are even more so for us today. Clearly a different standard of behavior is expected of us who claim to be disciples of Jesus and most importantly toward one another. The way we think, talk and live our Catholic faith sets us apart and makes us a witness of our loving God. Our theme is very fitting because the thirty ministries the annual appeal supports help of Diocese truly “Be Kind and Merciful” in our world today. The needs of the poor are attended to through Catholic Charities. The Vocations Office is able to encourage vocations to our youth and help men discern a calling to the priesthood and the permanent diaconate. Hispanic and other ethnic ministries make sure all feel welcome in our parishes. People of all ages are educated in our faith through Catholic schools and parish faith formation programs. Families are supported at every life stage. Youth, teens and young adults are encouraged to stay connected to our community of faith at an age when the pull of secular culture is strong.
Our parish goal for the 2020 CMAA is $173,800. The diocesan goal for the Appeal is $8.2 million. Many of us received the 2020 Appeal mailing from Bishop Conlon and our Apostolic Administrator Bishop Pates last week. Mine arrived in Monday’s mail. While we don’t get any “extra credit” for responses before the In-pew Sign Up weekend, early responses can give us a positive boost toward reaching this year’s goal. My pledge was sent in last week. I am asking you to join me in fulfilling our responsibilities to our larger, Diocesan Church. Please make a commitment to the 2020 CMAA at the highest level you are able to.
Looking ahead, our 2020 Parish Mission will be offered over February 29-March 3, beginning at the Saturday evening Masses and concluding with an evening Mass on March 8th. We are very happy to welcome Father Richard Fragomeni to our parish. He is a priest of the Diocese of Albany, NY, ordained in 1975. He has been a member of the Chicago Catholic Theological Union faculty since 1990. There he is Professor of Liturgy and Preaching and Chair of the Department of Word and Worship. Father Fragomeni is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Religious Studies at DePaul University, Chicago. He also serves as the Rector of The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii, an Italian-American spiritual center in Chicago’s historic Little Italy. He is preaching at each of our weekend Masses and then will lead us each evening of the Mission. Please set these dates aside and plan on joining us for as many evenings as possible during this special time for our parish.
With the season of Lent beginning in just a few weeks, we will have Bishop Ken Untener’s “The Little Black Book” for the season of Lent 2020 available next 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 “Cycle A Sunday Gospels.” The six-minute program begins on February 23rd and continues each day of Lent. They are available in both English and Spanish. Also available while the supply lasts, Bishop Robert Barron’s Daily Lenten Reflections. There are also online Lenten resources that you will see in our brochure, which will be mailed to all parishioners’ homes by Ash Wednesday.
May God continue to bless us with all that we need, and more.
Father Jim Murphy