Father David’s Letter

“The People who walked in Darkness have seen a Great Light;

Upon Those who dwelt in the Land of Gloom a Light has Shown.”

 Dear Friends in Christ,

Think back to last Christmas and all the many festivities we were enjoying with our family and friends.  Surely it was a beautiful and joyful time, as Christmas always is.  We basked in the enchanting glow of the Christmas festivals, as we always do.  Life was no doubt generally good and happy for most of us.  Little did we know that in a few short months so much in our lives would change drastically and dramatically.

Just one year after last Christmas, we have all endured months of lockdowns, quarantining, isolation, social and political acrimony and unrest.  Millions have grieved the loss of jobs and even livelihoods.  Thousands were denied the need to say their final goodbyes to loved ones who died in isolation.  Many other thousands, young and old, were suddenly taken from us, as if in a kind of rapture.  And life for countless millions, including perhaps many of us, generally carries with if a feeling of anxiety, fear, uncertainty, restlessness, and in some cases even despair.  I know, because I hear it, and I feel it.  Daytime has turned to Night.

Then come the timely words from the Prophet Isaiah that we read above, words that are proclaimed during the Mass of the Night of Christmas (Midnight).  Perhaps these Sacred Words have never rung truer for many of us.  The comfort, routine, normalcy, and stability of our lives have all been turned on their heads, and we have for months been yearning for “Tidings of Comfort and Joy.”  Well, now those Tidings have come!!

“For Behold, I Proclaim to You Good News of Great Joy!                                                                                 That will be for All the People                                                                                                                                  For Today in the City of David                                                                                                                                     A Savior has been Born For You                                                                                                                            Who Is Christ and Lord!”

             Jesus was born into a world that was broken, anxious, restless, and hurting, a world perhaps in many ways similar to ours.  To remind the world of the Undying and All-Consuming Love of the One True God and Father of All, the Eternal Son of God entered the messy world that was once pure, pristine, and whole when He had fashioned it.  He entered our world, became as one of us “in all things but sin”, grew up among us, revealed Himself to us, walked with us, gathered us back together, taught us, fed us, forgave us, healed us, and ultimately offered Himself as the New and Perfect Sacrifice for our Salvation.  He proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that God is still and forever “With Us”.  Our Emmanuel had come, and He would never leave us orphaned or abandoned.  Ever.  THAT, my beloved friends, IS Good News of Great Joy!

Merry Christmas!

Fr. David

 

2021-2022 TAX CREDIT SCHOLARSHIP

Reservation Night Wednesday January 13, 2021

Reservation opens 6:30pm

Click to submit reservations 7:00pm

This is the link to the Exchange Portal
Empower Illinois is a 501(c)(3) that provides low-income and working-class families the opportunity to explore new, quality K-12 education options through private school scholarships and advocating for innovation in Illinois education.

 

COVID-19 Mass Directives

As some parishioners do not feel comfortable attending Mass for at this time, you are encouraged to watch Mass on ETWN, local channels, and on St. Mary’s, St. Patrick’s and Holy Apostles’ websites. Bishop Malloy will also offer Masses on Sundays at 9am and reflections on Wednesdays at noon. These will be available on the diocesan website and their Facebook page. Here is the link to Spiritual Communion and Chaplet of the Blessed Sacrament: https://www.virgosacrata.com/spiritual-communion.html

To attend Mass, please remember to bring your face mask! This a requirement to wear a mask during the Mass. You can remove the mask when receiving Communion. Hand sanitizers are available in the church for your use as well. Our highest prioritiy is to keep our parishioners safe! We are following all the directives issued by the Diocese of Rockford and the Archdiocese of Chicago regarding social distancing, sanitizing, etc. 

Don’t forget that you can also tune your car radio to FM90.3 to listen in the parking lot and then receive the Eucharist after the Mass.

 

Here’s something to SMILE about! 🙂 

St. Mary’s Church is now connected with AMAZON.SMILE!  What is Amazon.Smile? Amazon is dedicated to giving back to charitable organizations like our parish. When you buy online at Amazon, you have the opportunity to have .05% of your purchases donated to St. Mary’s by Amazon. When you sign up for AmazonSmile, you’ll be asked to select from over a million of charities to support. But you can skip this step and click on our unique link. Then you’ll be taken to smile.amazon.com and then automatically asked if you want to support St Mary Church. Our unique charity link: https://smile.amazon.com/ch/36-2182123

Don’t forget to sign up for St. Mary’s MyParish App today!

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to enhance your spiritual life and get updates on what’s happening at St. Mary! Just text App to phone number 88202 or visit myparishapp.com to download. St. Mary’s will not automatically be one of your choices because we are a national parish which means we have no boundaries. Just type in St. Mary 1407 and the site will be available for you to click on and join. Keep yourself up to date on parish events, daily readings, messages, Pope Francis messages, and programs to enhance your faith journey.