Pastor's Message - May 27, 2018
"Brothers and sisters: Those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a Spirit of adoption, through whom we cry, “Abba, Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him." ~Romans 8
Dear Parishioners and Friends:
Our annual St. Rita Fiesta begins next Friday and Saturday. Lots of food, live music, games and a great car show! Bring the whole family!
A special thank you goes out to our Fiesta planning committee who have donated countless hours in organization and sponsorship promotion and to our generous sponsors for helping us make it all possible.
Note that next weekend, because of the Fiesta, the Saturday evening mass will be at 4pm. There will be golf cart taxis at the ready to assist people in arriving to the front door of church.
Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. It is because of Jesus that we can begin to understand the Trinitarian mystery of God. Jesus made countless references to his relationship to his Heavenly Father. In the Gospel of John we read, "I and the Father are one."(John 10:30) On the same page we also read the phrase... "He who sees me sees the Father." John 12:45) Jesus never distinguishes himself as separate or apart from his Heavenly Father's person or His will. Jesus and His Father are of a perfect unity.
In John 15:26, Jesus also tells the disciples he would send his disciples an "Advocate - the Spirit of Truth" who would come to them from the Father to help and guide them. Years later, in the year 325, a synod of Bishops from around the world came together to define in writing the current description of what we now call the "Nicene Creed." Here is the Nicene Creed below with a few of my personal notes added:
"I believe in one God, (Christians understand God as ONE God-not separate gods) the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible (everything we know and don't yet know ultimately comes from the hand of God) I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God,(and fully God) born of the Father before all ages- (Jesus exists eternally even before his incarnation) God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, (perfect being) consubstantial (means Jesus is one and the same) with the Father; through him all things were made. For us men (and women too!) and for our salvation he came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary and became man (Jesus is God who becomes also human flesh because of the Virgin Mary). For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death and was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end. (In the second coming of Jesus, we will render an accounting of our lives)
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. (The Holy Spirit is also fully God) I believe in one, holy, catholic (the word catholic means universal) and apostolic Church. (Our faith is clearly rooted in the eyewitness testimony of the Apostles.) I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins (baptism removes our separation from God due to original sin) and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come." (Jesus promises us eternal life with Him!)
Imagine eternal life with God with all of our dreams fulfilled! No more death, illness, sin and hatred, bloodshed, disease, torment, or harm.
Let us draw closer to the Holy Trinity through the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist and help our family and our fellow brothers and sisters to do the same.
May God bless you this week.
An Introduction to Sunday's Scripture Readings - May 20, 2018
In the hope that you will enter more fully into the Mass
LORD SEND OUT YOUR SPIRIT, AND RENEW THE FACE OF THE EARTH.(Psalm 104)
On this Pentecost Sunday, there are separate and multiple optional readings for the Vigil Mass and the Masses during the day. So this week, we will concentrate on the readings for the Sunday Masses during the day.
'Pentecost' is a Greek word meaning 'fiftieth day' and is the biblical feast commemorating the day God gave the Torah to the people of Israel. It was celebrated fifty days after the Passover Feast. In biblical times, all Jews of age were required to travel to Jerusalem to participate in the celebration. Pentecost Sunday is often referred to as the birthday of the Church - the day when we Christians became Church.
Our first reading (Acts 2:1-11)
tells this story vividly. Fifty days after Jesus' Passover supper, the disciples were celebrating the harvest festival of Pentecost or Shavuot (feast of weeks). Suddenly, the promised Advocate descended upon them and enlightened and emboldened them.
When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.
Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven staying in Jerusalem. At this sound, they gathered in a large crowd, but they were confused because each one heard them speaking in his own language. They were astounded, and in amazement they asked, "Are not all these people who are speaking Galileans? Then how does each of us hear them in his native language? We are Parthians, Medes, and Elamites, inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya near Cyrene, as well as travelers from Rome, both Jews and converts to Judaism, Cretans and Arabs, yet we hear them speaking in our own tongues of the mighty acts of God."
In our Gospel reading (John 15:26-27; 16:12-15)
Jesus promised his disciples that the Advocate (Holy Spirit) would come. He "will guide you to all truth". Everything the Father and Jesus shared will be declared to them.
Jesus said to his disciples: "When the Advocate comes whom I will send you from the Father, the Spirit of truth that proceeds from the Father, he will testify to me. And you also testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.
"I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you."
In our Epistle reading (Galations 5:16-25)
, St. Paul exhorts his readers to live in the Spirit, not in the flesh. He then clearly outlines what each means. He highlights sixteen vices of the flesh and nine "fruits of the Spirit". If we live in the Spirit, we will evidence those fruits in our daily lives.
Brothers and sisters, live by the Spirit and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh. For the flesh has desires against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you may not do what you want. But if you are guided by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, lust, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified their flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit.
This Advocate, the Holy Spirit came just as Jesus had promised. It was a thrilling and earthshaking event that changed the world. This "Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father and the Son" lives and remains active in our world today. This is our prayer today and always, "Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And you shall renew the fact of the earth."
- Click HERE to read and reflect on the full readings for Saturday, May 19
- Click HERE to read and reflect on the full readings for Sunday, May 20
Our Fiesta database is open for you and your family to sign up to volunteer - click here! We are also looking for a coordinator for Gift Basket Raffle and a photographer and/or drone pilot.
Here are a few other items we're looking for:
-Talent Show Acts (3-5 minutes)
-Giant camping coolers (to borrow for the weekend)
-Cases of soda or juice
-New beanie babies or McDonald’s toys
There is a collection box in the greeting area for books, games, puzzles, and music for our Book Sale. Plant donations will also be accepted...once it finally decides to warm up a little!
For complete Fiesta and Spectacular Raffle information, check out our flyer or go to the Fiesta webpage.
T-Shirts for Fiesta Workers will be available between 5:30 and 7:00pm on Wednesday, May 30 & Thursday, May 31 or stop at the Information Booth before your shift during the Fiesta. Set up for the Fiesta will happen both nights so if you can stay and help set up it would be much appreciated!
Come to Frontier Field to celebrate Catholic School Day with the Red Wings. All students will participate in a pre-game parade. Game starts at 1:30 pm
Tickets need to be ordered by June 1st. Click here for the order form.
Come party with us at the 64th Annual Fiesta!
June 1st and June 2nd
There is something for everyone.
Sunday, June 10 at Noon at the Knights of Columbus
The patriotic entity of the Webster Knights of Columbus referred to as the Fourth Degree, will hold a Flag Retiring Ceremony.
Anyone who has a flag they wish to be properly disposed of may drop it in the bin in the greeting area in Church or at St. Rita parish office during the week.
You may also bring your flag to the ceremony - all are welcome to attend! Please meet behind the Knights of Columbus building at 70 Barrett Drive in the village of Webster.
Register now for "Shipwrecked" VBS!
This summer's program is August 6-10 from 9 am - noon for students ages 4-10.
There is a $25 per student fee, with a family max of $60. All families will receive a music CD.
Click here to sign up students.
Click here to sign up volunteers, ages 11+ (entering 6th grade or above).
Prospective new families can either stop in the office for a packet or follow the link to Admissions---Registration for the packet.
If you have any questions about registration, please contact the School Office (585-671-3132).
For help in planning future events here is next year's school calendar.