Here’s a word not often heard these days: DUTY. Webster’s dictionary defines duty simply as “something a person must do; a moral obligation”. I got thinking of this word realizing that today, Trinity Sunday, is a Catholic’s last opportunity to complete their ‘Easter Duty’.
Some may ask ‘what’s that?’! The Easter Duty is an obligation of every Catholic who has received their First Communion. They have a duty to receive the Eucharist at least once a year and if at no other time then certainly between the First Sunday of Lent and Trinity Sunday around the most holy season of Easter.
Now a days it seems a strange obligation since most people who attend Mass receive the Eucharist, but I remember days when it was not the case. For various reasons, a person did not receive the Lord in Communion as frequently, and so the Church required annual reception.
Of course, to fulfill this obligation a person may have to receive the Sacrament of Penance (confession), but the focus of one’s duty is reception of Communion.
Our sense of duty, especially in the civic and religious realms, can become lax at times. Our consciences can be numbed to what I am expected to do in my relationship with God, the Church, my family, school, and society at large. For many of you reading this you probably have a strong and active sense of your obligations. Attendance at Sunday Mass is a duty; voting in our society is a privilege and a duty; responding to the needs of the poor among us is Christ’s moral teaching to all his disciples.
Searching my own feelings and thoughts about the upcoming elections I can understand how people can become apathetic. But this year is very important because a number of issues – often agendas of our candidates – speak to our values and our duty as Catholic Christians in this society.
Almost all the ‘hot button’ issues can challenge us to form opinions: the mandatory health care provision that challenges religious liberty; the definition of marriage; the rights of the unborn; a fair response to undocumented immigrants; and stewardship toward the environment – just to name a few!
But as a Catholic what obligation do I have by the fact that God graces me through His Sacraments not simply for myself, but for others? What is my duty?
A group of parishioners are coming together to reflect and talk more about the Sacraments call us to a response. What must I do as a Baptized Catholic? What does fulfilling the Easter Duty actually expect of me in society? How does the Anointing of the Sick benefit me but challenge me to respond to others?
We will be using the book by Megan McKenna entitled, Rites of Justice. Anyone available on a first or third Tuesday evening is invited to join us in the air-conditioned Conference Room. We’ll begin later this month.
Remember next Sunday the 9:30 Mass and Coffee and Donuts will be held at our school site – 750 South Main – Rain or Shine! Following the Mass there will be a procession with the Blessed Sacrament. Please bring a lawn chair or two, maybe a breakfast cake, and a friend.
THERE WILL BE NO 9:30 AM MASS IN THE CHURCH NEXT SUNDAY. Join us at the School site.
Based on the local news media, Bishop Lennon has been meeting with representatives of all 12 closed and now reopened parishes. I suspect that from these conversations, the bishop will assess what the reopened St. Mary Church will be needing with regard to pastoral staff, school management, property needs, and furnishing replacement – just to name a few. Until we hear something from the Diocese, I ask your continued prayers for our parishioners, Bishop, and all interested parties. I know that people in other parishes who are not affected by this are concerned for us and are praying for us. God will certainly hear their prayers.
We conclude another year of Children’s Liturgy during the 9:30am Mass. Thanks to the leaders who shared their faith and skills with the children. As we evaluate this program for the coming year, we invite parents to respond by contacting the parish office with your comments.
There is no 6:00 PM Mass here in the church this Sunday and likewise no Confessions prior. Many parishioners will be traveling to Windsor, OH on pilgrimage to one of the tallest statues of our Lady in the world. Mass will be there in Spanish at 1:00pm.
Peace, Fr. Dan
Este fin de semana no hay misa a las 6:00pm a causa que la celebraremos a la 1:00 en Windsor, OH a la estatua de N. S. de Guadalupe. El autobus y fila saldremos a las 11:00am. Regresaremos a las 5:00pm.
El proximo domingo la misa 9:30am sera en el sito de la escuela; no misa aquí. Todos estan invitados.
El 10 de junio hay clase de bautismo. Los padres asisten esta clase para recibir el sacramento paro su hijo. Padrinos pueden asistir tambien.
El Padre Pablo Schindler celebro la misa el domingo pasado con el Diacono Miguel. El rosario se recitado frecuentamente en casa. Si quiere participar contactar a Beth en la oficinia 330-253-5161.
No tengo mucho a decir este fin de semana. Si quiere leer un tema o asunto, dame su idea y puedo responder. La paz, Fr. Dan