October is Respect Life Month

10-03-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Charlie Goraieb

Dear Friends,

This is the first Sunday of October, the month where we especially recognize the God-given dignity of each human person and the blessing of the gift of life. All priests (and deacons) are encouraged to focus their homilies on topics related to life. We plan to use the 5 Sundays of October to preach about abortion, racism, the attack on the family, Euthanasia and end-of-life issues and contraception/IVF. These are not cheery topics, but the Church, in her role as Prophet, cannot shy away from the “hard sayings” if Catholics are to remain credible witnesses and signs of contradiction to the popular culture. Please pray for us that we can speak the truth in charity.

I also want to encourage you to participate in the 40-days for life campaign that is already in progress. More information is available at www.40daysforlife.com/en/tempe.

Last week we received a disbursement of $46,000 from the Diocese for our portion of the capital campaign, Together Let Us Go Forth. As you will recall, 35% of all the funds collected are returned to the parish for our needs. The campaign at OLMC was before my time, but I know that it coincided with a second campaign to pay for the Shea grant, and then came the upheaval caused by the pandemic. Yet despite all that, most of you have remained very faithful in fulfilling your pledges. For this I express my gratitude for your support and love of your parish. If you have had to take a break from fulfilling your pledge because of challenging circumstances but are able to resume doing so, please do. And for those who did not participate in the Capital Campaign when it was conducted, you can still do so at any time.

Many of you, in recent years, have made a consecration to Mary and to Joseph. It is a good and even necessary to renew those consecrations at least yearly (some do it more often). I would like to schedule making/renewing the consecration to Mary on December 8th and to St Joseph on March 19th. I know that doesn’t coincide with the dates that some of you made your original consecrations but doing the Marian consecration in December then allows us to make the consecration to Joseph on one of the few days that is most appropriate for that--March 19th. The starting date for preparing the Marian consecration will be November 5th. I recommend using the book, 33 Days to Morning Glory, by Fr Michael Gaitley, but if you prefer the book by St Louis de Montfort, Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary, that is perfectly fine. We have several copies of the pamphlet version of Fr Gaitley’s book that we will make available to you at no cost until they are gone. We will provide more information as we get closer to beginning the Consecration.

A reminder of the Community Forum, next Wednesday, Oct 6 at 7pm in McCready Hall. This will be an opportunity for you to contribute your thoughts on the priorities of our parish going forward.

During our many discussions regarding the Sacrament of the Eucharist, a number of questions arose that still may not be clear. The most common ones are as follows:

  • You may receive Holy Communion on your tongue or your hand, and either standing or kneeling. If you receive on the hand, please make a “throne” to receive the Lord by placing your left hand on top of your right, then after receiving Him, take one step to the side and consume the host in the presence of the EM.
  • While we are not permitted to impart a blessing per se to those who will not receive Holy Communion, the EMs will invoke a short prayer over those coming forward with their arms crossed.
  • You are always free to remain in your pew and, in the quiet of your heart, ask the Lord to come to you spiritually.
  • Give thanks to Jesus for the great gift he has given us of His Body and Blood.

Know that I pray daily for all of you, and I ask you to please do so for me.

God bless you,
Fr Charlie Goraieb