Taking Our Lady to the Homebound

08-27-2017The Sisters Corner

As you all know, we are in the 100th Anniversary of the Apparition of Our Lady of Fatima. Fr. John procured a statue of Our Lady and She has been visiting the families of our Parish bringing so much joy and peace into their homes.

We, the Ministers of Care, wanted to do the same for the homebound of our Parish. So the ministry acquired a smaller statue of Our Lady of Fatima and, since May, Our Lady has been reaching out to our homebound! We are grateful for the generosity of the Ministers of Care Ministry.

Our homebound have been very happy for the visit of Our Lady’s statue to their homes. Some of the patients have enjoyed praying the rosary, or a decade of the rosary. Some also have had the opportunity to have Her in their homes for a few days thus gaining the plenary indulgence. Our dear homebound have definitely felt very special, grateful and blessed.

Please keep praying for this beautiful ministry!

Sr. Maria Alejandra

Everyday Stewardship

08-27-2017Stewardship Reflection

"You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church." The name Peter is significant. It comes from a word that means "rock." When Jesus gives this new name to Simon, he is identifying this chosen Apostle as a foundation upon which his church will stand. This verse, along with the constant practice of church tradition ever since that moment, explains the office of the papacy. The pope, even to this day, is a direct successor of Saint Peter. An unbroken historical line traces right back to Christ himself when he gave "the keys to the kingdom of heaven" to Peter.

In establishing Peter as the first pope, Jesus was putting a structure in place that has proved to be a brilliant one. Because it is built on a firm foundation, the Catholic Church has been able to persevere for millennia through schisms, wars, scandals, and the persistent presence of sin in its all-too-human members. The church has maintained consistency and unity in her teaching thanks to the headship of the pope. It really is remarkable that an institution so old can still be so vital in this day and age. Thus far, the prophetic utterance of Christ remains true, "the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it." Jesus must have been thinking of us, of all future Christians, when he established the papacy. Just as Jesus instructed Peter after the Resurrection to "Feed my lambs...feed my sheep," (Jn 21:15, 17), so too our Holy Father continues the mission to care for us like a good shepherd. We may be thousands of miles from him, but his prayers and his leadership serve our local Catholic community nonetheless. The pope's care for us will always be a reminder of the loving concern of Christ for his church.

The Path of Totality

08-27-2017Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

I found it a bit amusing how Americans can figure out ways to make a profit off a Solar Eclipse! Hotels, restaurants, and businesses along the path of totality all saw their business ledgers turn as black as the eclipsed light of the sun. Still, it was good for us to look up for a change and not down at our phone screens and to consider a subject that we give so little thought to in our times: cosmology. With each new change in understanding of the world at large, from the Copernican revolution to Newtonian physics to Einstein’s theory of Relativity, comes a change in the way we understand ourselves as well. When it comes to faith and science, way too many people remember the Galileo affair, but few know that Einstein’s theory of Relativity was given its biggest boost by a Catholic priest: Fr. Georges Lemaitre, a Belgian priest and mathematician. (what follows is from a wonderful blog that I encourage you to read: These Stone Walls: http://thesestonewalls.com/gordonmacrae/science-faith-big-bang-theory-creation/ . READ MORE

One God and Father of Us All

08-20-2017Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

Having grown up at the height of the Civil Rights era, I look around today and am horrified with what I see. It seems our society is regressing from Dr. King’s vision of a society where the standard of judgment is the content of one’s character to one that sees only the color of one’s skin or gender or lack thereof gender. When identity politics is pushed hard enough, the logical outcome is more identity politics. When a person or group is ascribed political power, economic empowerment, legal protection solely on the basis of their race, ethnicity or gender/transgender, then sooner or later the individuals or groups that feel disempowered or unnoticed will start to assert themselves. This leads to “us-them” mentality where one group is pitted against the other until finally, they reach extremes; the result is the putrid excrement that descended on Charlottesville, Virginia.

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Everyday Stewardship

08-20-2017Stewardship Reflection

Today’s Gospel from the Book of Matthew describes what occurred in Tyre and Sidon when Jesus cured the daughter of a Gentile woman. Tyre and Sidon were Gentile cities. The Apostles faithfully followed the Lord wherever He went, just as we are called to do.

There was only one reason that the Lord made this trip (on foot, of course, as that was the only alternative at that time), and that was to cure the daughter of the Gentile woman. Making an effort like that is a sign of Christ’s love and His understanding of a need. He was also trying to teach His followers, which includes us, how important each individual and her or his faith is.

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Everyday Stewardship

08-13-2017Stewardship Reflection

In today’s Gospel from the Book of Matthew, we hear the remarkable story of Jesus walking on the Sea of Galilee. St. Peter reflects his faith in the Lord when he says, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” Jesus says simply, “Come.” We do not know if Peter stepped into the water or jumped and it does not matter. His faith and trust in the Lord allows Peter, too, to begin to walk on the water. Clearly when Peter’s focus is on Christ, he is able to accomplish this.

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Religious Education with Sr. Cristina

08-13-2017The Sisters Corner

My name is Sr. Cristina, the mission that God has given to me here at Our Lady of Mount Carmel is the Religious Education program.

I’m extremely happy to serve God through the children. As the director, I am blessed to be able to see how all of the children are open to receive God’s love. I believe God has a Plan for everybody. The children and their families alike. Participating in the Vacation Bible School program was for me a big example of that.

I believe that the Religious Education here at Mt. Carmel is not only a ministry for the children but for the whole family. We want to build a community who, together can strengthen our faith and together live with joy the Good News of the Gospel.

9x3 and 9x3 = 54

08-13-2017Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

As we continue our prayerful walk through the Jubilee Year of the Centenary of the Apparitions at Fatima, we have a few more opportunities to ask Our Lady’s assistance. First, our Bishop has asked all of us to join him in a 54 Day Rosary Novena. But “Father,” you say, “a novena is nine days.” Correct. But this is actually 6 Novenas: three in petition and three in thanksgiving. Anyone who has ever done this will tell you it is very powerful prayer tool. The 54 Day Rosary Novena begins on August 21 (the Vigil of the Feast of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary) and concludes on October 13, the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima. The three intentions the Bishop requests are: The Sanctity of all Human Life, especially an end to violence against all innocent and vulnerable human lives; the strengthening of the vocation of Marriage; and Vocations to the Priesthood and Consecrated Life. Those three novenas are then followed by three novenas of thanksgiving, believing what we ask prayerfully that we shall receive as God sees fit.

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What's Going On

08-06-2017Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

This is a Save the Date Letter. Lots of upcoming events here at the Parish. First please plan to join us on August 15 the Feast Day of The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is also the anniversary of the founding of the Servants of the Plan of God, so it is a big day for our five Sisters. Bishop Olmsted will be here to celebrate Mass at 7pm on Tuesday the 15th. We should all take this time to express our gratitude to the Sisters and the Servants for sending them to us!

In September, we will host the 5th Encuentro for Hispanic/Latino Ministry. This is part of a national effort by the US Bishops to help bring 18-26yr olds back to the Church, particularly those of Hispanic background but not limited to them. So, we are partnering with the ASU Newman Center and St. Tim's to invite single and married young people between the ages of 18 and 26 yrs old so that we can listen to their concerns and experiences about the Church. This is a listening time only, not a hard sell to young people. This will help us form a pastoral plan at the Parish and Diocesan level to engage the youth of today. So, if you know any young people, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews etc. please invite them. More info will be coming shortly with a Flyer to give out.

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Everyday Stewardship

08-06-2017Stewardship Reflection

There are times in our lives that we get the chance to see a glimpse of heaven. It may be through the love of another, loved one or stranger. Sometimes it may even be an event that seems unexplainable, perhaps even supernatural. These occurrences may be the answer to prayer or they may surprise us by coming out of nowhere. But no matter their nature or origin, they give us hope and strength to carry on through life.

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