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Coming to Jesus Through Stewardship

05-29-2016Encountering ChristBilly Tackett

My "Come to Jesus" moment began when I fell behind in completing stewardship hours for Confirmation. By January of my 7th grade year I had failed to complete any of my stewardship hours, with no prospects going forward. To remedy this, Sr. Lorraine offered to waive any stewardship hour deficiencies if a student attended the Pro-life March in Washington D.C. My parents were unable to accompany me, but gave instructions to "follow the nun" wherever she went. I did. As I entered into 8th grade Sr. Lorraine informed me that in order to complete my stewardship hours that year, I was going to assist her in teaching a 2nd grade class. This was a real challenge and gift for me because I didn't know anything about my faith until I had to teach it.

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Fullness of Joy in the Lord

05-22-2016Encountering ChristJennifer Prickel

"These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full" (John 15:11). I have always loved teaching. There is something so special about sharing your passion with others through explanation and group discussion—and when it comes to teaching others, not about a subject, such as math or Spanish but the person of Jesus Christ, it becomes even more significant. I had the great privilege of co-teaching a group of 8th graders on Monday nights this past year and it was as if this verse from John's Gospel came to life. I was entrusted with a group of young people, desirous of being understood, listened to, and known. It is precisely in being aware of these basic human needs that a soul can be open to God's word. In each one of my students, I saw a soul on the journey to God and I wanted to do all I could to help them along the path. I sought to share my experience of Jesus's love in my life and the joy He brings as the fulfillment of all desire.

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A very ancient and venerable hymn: The Gloria

05-22-2016Liturgy CornerCheryl Manfredonia

"Bless the Lord, you angels of the Lord, sing praise to him and highly exalt himforever."
—Daniel 3:37

The Gloria is a very ancient and venerable hymn in which the Church glorifies the Father and the Lamb. It is preferably sung (or said) on Sundays and feast days outside the seasons of Advent and Lent. The Gloria is a joyful response to the forgiveness received in the Penitential Act. When it was first introduced to the Roman liturgy, it was sung only at the midnight celebration of the Nativity of our Lord – called the "Angelic Hymn" (because it begins with the song of the angels that was heard at the birth of Jesus Christ).

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Celebrating the Priestly Ordination of Edwin Mauricio Tabera Vasquez

05-15-2016Weekly ReflectionDeacon Mauricio

What are the few moments/decisions/events that you relied on the Holy Spirit to guide you?

The Holy Spirit is a gift that we all receive first at baptism, second at confirmation and then He is also   present within the Church in each one of the Sacraments.  Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told His disciples that He would send one who would teach and guide all those who believe in Him. Jesus’ promise was fulfilled less than two weeks later when the Holy Spirit descended upon the believers at Pentecost.

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My Journey to the Church

05-15-2016Encountering ChristAnonymous

Although I was not raised in the Church I married a Catholic. I went to Mass on Sundays with my husband and children, refraining from going up for communion. I was intrigued by the person of Jesus but not willing to make a commitment to this way of life. It wasn’t until my daughter was in first grade that she asked me pointedly, “You say that God is important and that we need to do our prayers but why don’t you go up to get Jesus?” I was stumped and began to really ponder this question. I asked myself if I really believed that Jesus was Lord and Savior or was I just going through the motions? I realized I was afraid of disappointing my family, fearing that they might look down on me for converting to   another religion and it was only when I began to ask   myself what was more important: disappointing my family or accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior that I went through RCIA.

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My Extraordinary Journey of Faith

05-08-2016Encountering ChristDolores Berardi

My parents were Italian Immigrants who came to America during the early 1930's. My mother, having been taught by nuns in a Catholic boarding school in Italy, was very strict. She walked to Church with us every Sunday. My two siblings and I loved going to Church because afterwards we would stop at the local bakery and pick up donuts and fresh baked bread. My mother had a great devotion to Mary and so named me after, Our Lady of Sorrows.

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In the name of…...

05-08-2016Liturgy CornerCheryl Manfredonia

We begin the Sacred Liturgy, as we do all good things: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit --the Sign of the Cross. After the entrance hymn, the priest invokes God's presence and power with these words – taken from the lips of Christ himself (Matt. 28:19).

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The Grace of Baptism

05-01-2016Encountering ChristMary Ann Flood

I grew up in in a predominately Catholic neighborhood in upper Manhattan. My parents were not practicing Catholics; for their own personal reasons they had turned away from the Church. As I reflect back upon my upbringing, I believe my parents, without realizing it, raised my brothers and I according to the Ten Commandments with the exception of 'keeping holy the Sabbath'. All of my friends were Catholic and it was through them that I learned about God and the Catholic Church. They attended Catechism (as it was called then) taught by the nuns.

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How God calls us to participate at Mass?

05-01-2016Liturgy CornerCheryl Manfredonia

Father Tim had such words of wisdom last week in his homily, which has been resonating with me all week: "Much of what we do is habit – we go through motions on automatic pilot, without much thought. Therefore, it is nice to have a reminder of the importance of what we do." Just as we heard last week the importance of receiving the Eucharist, so might we need a review of how and why we participate in the liturgy.

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