Pastor's Letter - December 9, 2018

Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths. These words of John the Baptist (which he quotes from the prophet Isaiah) taken from today’s Gospel (of Luke), were a call to the people to ready themselves for the coming of the Messiah. They are a call to us as well. Saint Paul in today’s second reading adds his words of encouragement, too: This is my prayer: that your love may increase... so that you may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ.... The Lord Himself has given us the means by which we prepare ourselves for His coming, and through which we are made pure and blameless. The Sacrament of Penance by which we are reconciled to the Father is that gift from the Lord to assist us in growing closer to Him. This Holy Season of Advent is a good time to make use of that Sacrament. For opportunities for the Sacrament of Penance, see the confession schedule printed in this bulletin and in the Advent Calendar sent to each household.

At the end of the calendar year it is common for many families to make a reckoning of their finances. I do the same thing personally and in regards to our parish’s finances (even though we operate on a fiscal year which ends June 30). I wish to express my gratitude for all our parishioners who have generously support SSPP this year. In past years the parish has provided at the beginning of the year a box containing offering envelopes for the whole year. I have decided to replace this with a mailing system, where each household will receive in the middle of each month a packet containing envelopes for the Sundays of the following month. Soon all our parishioners will be receiving such a mailing for the month of January. There are a number of benefits for the parish office to such a system, and, I hope, to our parishioners, too.

On a related note: if you wish to claim a financial gift to our parish on your taxes for 2018, we must receive it at the parish office by December 31, 2018. By law, donations received after December 31 must be recorded for 2019.

May God bless you! Fr. Schaller