St. Charles Parish Location: St. Francis, SD Sunday Mass: 11:30 AM Pastor: Fr. John Hatcher, S.J. St. Francis Mission Phone: 605.747.2361 Parish Administrator: Mr. Tony Lusvardi, S.J. Parish Office Phone: 605.747.2496 Reconciliation: Sundays, 20 min prior to Mass St. Bridget’s Mass Sunday: 9:00 AM St. Agnes Masses Sunday: 2:00 PM St. Thomas the Apostle Masses Sunday: 9:00 AM
Daily Mass This Week Tuesday: 5:30 PM, St. Bridget’s Wednesday: 5:30 PM, St. Charles Thursday: 5:30 PM, St. Bridget’s
<><><><><><><><><><><><><>December 11th, 2011<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><> Good morning! Welcome to the celebration of Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Advent. We’re glad to worship with you, and we hope you have a blessed week.
Engaging the Word 1st Reading Is 61: 1-2a, 10-11 ~ 2nd Reading 1 Thes 5: 16-24 ~ Gospel: Jn 6-8, 19-28
In today’s Gospel, we hear that John the Baptist came to “testify to the light” (Jn 1:7). The Light to which John the Baptist testifies emanates from Jesus Christ, the Word incarnate. A few verses earlier in the Gospel of John, we read: “In Him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (Jn 1:4-5). On this anticipatory day, Gaudete Sunday, we are called to identify the ever-present Light of Christ in our lives and to rejoice in thanksgiving. Sometimes it seems the darkness of the world might consume us and we sometimes even retreat to it. But the Light shines forth always for us, ready to be the true joy of our souls. When we allow the Light to come closer, we sometimes see things we wish not to see – our faults, our fears – but, by illuminating those things, the Light makes them less threatening. In that Light, we were created and in that Light we are re-created as sons and daughters of God.
Gaudete Sunday For centuries, the third Sunday of Advent has been celebrated as Gaudete Sunday, which bears its name from the Latin word for “rejoice.” This day marks the midway point in our preparation for Christmas, and we take time to recognize the nearness of Christ’s birth. We emphasize the day with the color rose, a blend of Advent’s purple and Christmas’ white. Fittingly, our readings for this Sunday call us to rejoice and take comfort in the unconditional love and salvation of God. In the Gospel reading, John the Baptist reminds us that “there is one among you whom you do not recognize, who is coming after me.” Come, Lord Jesus!
Advent Confession One important aspect of our Advent preparation for the celebration of Christ’s birth and, ultimately, for his Second Coming is the purification of our souls. As Christmas draws nearer, additional confession times are being offered. As always, confession is offered 20 minutes before Sunday Mass as well as by appointment. The additional confession times for Advent are as follows: 6-7 PM Wednesday December 14 at St. Charles 6-7:30 PM Thursday December 15 at St. Bridget's 6-7 PM Wednesday December 21 at St. Charles 7-8 PM Saturday December 24 at St. Agnes (before the Christmas Mass)
“Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances, give thanks.”
Saint Juan Diego and Our Lady of Guadalupe On December 13th, the Church celebrates the life of Juan Diego. Born in 1474, this Mexican Aztec Indian was a childless widower and a devout Christian when Mary appeared to him. On December 9th, 1531, as he walked past a sacred hill on his way to Mass, he heard a voice calling to him. He climbed the hill and found an olive-skinned girl of about fourteen years old. She told him she was the Virgin Mary and that he must go to the bishop to ask that a church be built on that spot. She promised, as “the mother of all nations,” to hear the people’s laments and to heal and cure their misfortunes at this church. After a few failed attempts to persuade the bishop, Juan Diego was given roses from the Virgin Mary as a sign of her blessing. When Juan Diego dumped the roses from his cloak in front of the bishop, they both found an image of the Virgin Mother emblazoned on the cloak. The bishop fell to the ground in awe and he agreed to build the church. That same cloak hangs over the altar in that church today.
“Lord, I Am Not Worthy…” When [Jesus] entered Capernaum, a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.” He said to him, “I will come and cure him.” The centurion said in reply, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed” (Matt 8: 5-8). One of the most noticeable changes in the new Mass translations comes from this Gospel passage. The context of the passage helps to explain why its words are so appropriate as a preparation for Holy Communion. In Jesus’ time, this Roman centurion—a Gentile—was considered unable to receive the promise of salvation that God offered to his Chosen People, Israel. However, the centurion had great faith in Jesus, even calling Him “Lord.” In response, Jesus was willing to answer the man's prayer and visit his home—an act forbidden by Jewish cultural norms. In the end, this story is as much about the faith of the centurion as it is about a miracle of Jesus. The words of the centurion are a perfect model for us as we search for a way to respond to Christ’s gift of His Body and Blood in Holy Communion. Nobody can become worthy of such a gift on his own, but God's love can heal all our afflictions and make us worthy of Himself. And Jesus said to the centurion, “You may go; as you have believed, let it be done for you.” And at that very hour [his] servant was healed (Matt 8:13).
Announcements Catholics Returning Home Have you been away from the Church for awhile? Do you know someone who wants to return to the church? The six-week “Catholics Returning Home” series begins at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 10, 2012, at Blessed Sacrament, 4500 Jackson Blvd., Rapid City. For more information, contact Greg Sass at firstname.lastname@example.org or 605-939-0579, or visit http:// ReturningCatholics.net. There is no charge and pre-registration is not required. Holy Hour and Adoration will be offered in addition to confession on Wed. Dec 14th and 21st at St. Charles. Note that the time has been changed to 6-7pm. Please consider donating live poinsettia flowers to decorate the church on Christmas. You can bring them to Mass on Sundays or contact Betty Young, 747-2567. House Blessings Fr. Amar has graciously agreed to visit the homes of families requesting a house blessing. Contact Tony Lusvardi, SJ to schedule a visit, 747-2496. Christmas Masses Times for Christmas Mass are as follows: December 25 December 24 St. Agnes 8:00 (Confessions at 7:00) St. Bridget 10:30 AM St. Charles Midnight St. Bridget Midnight
Next Sunday’s Readings 1st Reading: 2 Sm 7: 1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16 2nd Reading: Rom 16: 25-27 Gospel: Lk 1: 26-28