Today’s Gospel story from Luke recounts the sending out of the 72 disciples. When the Lord first began His public ministry, He quickly gathered many disciples (from the Greek word for student). From these He selected “The Twelve”. These Twelve, of course, were the closest to Him, who traveled with Him, who shared the Last Supper with Him, and who saw Him in the upper room after His resurrection. The Lord deliberately chose twelve Apostles in order to signify that He was instituting a new Covenant – one which is the fulfillment of the old Covenant God formed with Moses and the Twelve Tribes of Israel. This is also why St. Paul refers to the Church as the “Israel of God” (today’s second reading, Paul’s letter to the Galatians). To further the symbolism, just as Moses, at God’s direction, selected 72 men to assist him in the administration of the Chosen People during their journey to the Promised Land, so now Jesus appoints 72 to assist Him and the Apostles in ushering in “The Kingdom of God”. He sends them out in pairs so that they may be an encouragement to each other and to provide greater safety for them as they travel. This custom of sending out missionaries in pairs is still practiced among several Christian sects: most of us have seen Mormons or Jehovah Witnesses out in pairs going door to door. Although we recognize that they do not possess the fullness of the Truth of the Gospel, one still has to admire their commitment to bringing their message to the world in much the same way as the 72 did when sent out by Jesus. Perhaps we Catholics could learn something from this. It isn’t necessary for everyone to go door-to-door to preach the Catholic Faith, but it is important for each one of us to share the Faith with those we meet. Having someone with you is always a great help. Alone we feel inadequate to the task, but with another to help and support us we are strengthened.
The annual observance of our nation’s Independence Day is an opportune time for us to reflect upon the great gift which freedom is, and the obligation that it places upon us. As Christians we should remember that God made us with a mind to know and a will to choose. Freedom is an inalienable right. God gave it to us – made it part of our very nature. It is not granted to us by any state or human power. It is, rather, the obligation of the state to protect and defend human freedom. This is the purpose of law enforcement and defensive armies. Freedom is a gift from God which enables us to choose the good. As we celebrate our nation’s birth, pray that God will preserve us from tyranny and evil. Pray that He will preserve us in freedom: freedom to choose the good, freedom to live for God.
I welcome to SSPP, Fr. Arul Joseph, who is here to ask for your support of the parish and school of St. Xavier in India. Thank you for your generosity!
May God bless you!
Mission Co-op 2022 Collection:
St. Xavier Church’s Primary School Savariyarpattinam, Sivagangai Diocese, Tamilnadu, India
All Masses, Sat-Sun, Jul. 2-3 @ SSPP
This weekend, Fr. Arul Joseph, Pastor of St. Peter, Stevens Point, is visiting our parish on behalf of the school of St. Xavier parish in his home village.
Please help build a much-needed new school building, the current one being near collapse. This will cost about $30,000 USD. Today there are 90 priests & religious serving around the world who originated from this school. Please help this school continue to serve its community (~150 families) & the universal Church.
Please make checks payable to SS Peter & Paul with “Mission Co-op” in the memo line.
You may drop your envelope in the collection basket or put it in another envelope & mail to SS Peter & Paul.
Thank you, & God bless you for your support!
Friends in Faith
4:30pm, Mondays @ SSPP School
Join us as we seek to help deepen our prayer life & faith through informal group discussion in a relaxed setting. If you have any questions, ask Sr. Barbara
The Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul has been celebrated in the Church as early as 258AD. In Rome, the joint feast of these two great apostles seems to have always been kept on June 29. There are a few theories as to why this solemnity which honors both saints is celebrated on the 29th of June. One theory is that Peter and Paul were both martyred on the same day but in different locations in Rome. Another theory is that Peter was martyred on June 29 between the years 65-67AD and Paul was martyred on the same day but a year later.
One aspect of this feast which is relatively unknown is its connection with the conferral of the Pallium to new archbishops by the pope on this day. The Pallium, which is made with the wool of a lamb, is worn by archbishops. It speaks to us of the catholicity of the Church, of the universal communion of the Pastor and flock and refers us to apostolic succession: to communion with the faith of the Apostles on which the Church is founded. Pastors who succeed St. Peter are Pastors like him, they are together with him, they belong to the common ministry of the Pastors of the Church of Jesus Christ, a ministry that continues in them. It is this faith which Jesus called Peter and Paul to live and die for and it is this faith that Jesus continues to call all to live and die for so that they may be with Him forever.
Last call for contributions for our new carillon (electronic bells) for our church. The best way to contribute is the Diocesan Annual Appeal. Since we have reached our target, all contributions to the DAA are 100% returned to our parish (without any assessment!). Contributions must be mailed to the diocese or received in the parish office by June 30 to be applied to this year’s DAA.
The ordination of Frs. Matthew Bowe and Steven Weller yesterday (Saturday, June 25) was a great celebration for our community and for the Diocese of La Crosse! Fr. Weller is the new associate at OLQH and Chaplain at Assumption Middle & High School. Please join me in praying for our newest priests of the Diocese of La Crosse, that God will strengthen them to be faithful priests, according to the Heart of Christ!
May God bless you! Fr. Schaller
Toys for Joy
The Toys for Joy program has resumed at Aspirus Riverview Hospital. We will be collecting new, tag-on stuffed animals to be given to anyone who comes to the E.R. A bin is located in the Family Cenacle. Remember they must be new. Thank you!
Today the church in America embarks on a three year journey of “Eucharistic Revival“. The Feast of Corpus Christi (The Body of Christ) is an opportunity for the Church to reflect more deeply on the mystery of the Gift which the Lord left us in the Mass. At every Mass our offerings of bread and wine are brought to the Altar of Sacrifice and, by the words and actions of the priest who stands in persona Christi (in the person of Christ), they become the Body and Blood of Christ. Though the appearances of bread and wine remain, by faith (in the promise the Lord Himself gave at the Last Supper) we know that we receive the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Savior Jesus Christ. According to the constant teaching of the Church, we receive the “whole Lord” whether we receive Him under the “form of bread” or the “form of wine”. Therefore, when we receive the Sacred Host or the Precious Blood alone, we do not lack the full Gift of the Lord in the Eucharist. Lord, we thank You for giving us Your very Self in the Holy Eucharist! “Sweet Sacrament, we Thee adore! Oh, make us love Thee, more and more! Oh, make us love Thee, more and more!”
The celebration of the Holy Eucharist is a true Sacrifice and a Sacred Banquet. It is our highest expression of worship to our God. It is for this reason that all who participate in the Mass should prepare themselves properly – interiorly and exteriorly. It is most fitting that the priest wears special vestments in order to indicate the special and sacred character of the Liturgy. A similar principle applies to all the faithful who participate in the Mass. Though styles may change depending on a number of variables (culture, place, climate, time) there still remains the necessity for all to dress in such a way as to express our love and reverence for the Lord, and respect for each other. The argument that “God doesn’t care what I wear in church” indicates a careless attitude towards God and others. The careful manner with which we groom and dress our body always demonstrates our respect for others. I hope these few guidelines may help: don’t wear shorts, t-shirts, beach wear, clothing with advertising, or any clothing which is immodest; and wear clothes which you would choose for an important event - for the Mass is an important event. Many people still recall the meaning of a phrase commonly used in past years: wear your Sunday Best! God deserves it!
May God bless you!
SSPP Parish Picnic
After 10am Mass, Sun, Jun. 26
Please join us as we celebrate our parish feast of SS Peter and Paul with a potluck picnic.
The parish will provide brats, hamburgers, hot dogs, & buns along with iced tea, lemonade, & water. Each family is asked to bring a dish to pass,
along with your own plates, cups, & silverware. You are also encouraged to
bring lawn chairs or blankets.
Please sign up on the sheets in the cenacle with the number attending & your dish-to-pass.
Having closed the Easter season last Sunday with the Solemnity of Pentecost commemorating the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, the Mother of the Lord, and all His disciples, the Church now enters “Ordinary Time”, during which the many teachings of the Lord are presented and the different mysteries of the Faith explored. One such mystery – in fact, the fundamental mystery of our Faith – is the Holy Trinity. God has revealed Himself as one God, yet three Divine Persons: the Father is made known through His creation, the Son in the Incarnation, and the Holy Spirit, manifested in a startling fashion at Pentecost. This is not some “trivia” about God that we can easily dismiss. The doctrine of the Holy Trinity expresses Who God is in Himself, as a community of Persons, yet remaining one God. The identity of the family and the nature of the Church – communities of love – find their “model” in the mystery of the Holy Trinity, which is the first community of love. We should always be mindful what it means to call this a “mystery”. It shouldn’t be confused with the contemporary use of the word, for instance, a “murder mystery”, where persistent investigation reveals facts not known before. Rather, the mysteries of Faith refer to truths revealed to us that can be understood only in a limited way, since our capacity to know is limited. Of all mysteries of Faith, the Holy Trinity is the most “mysterious”, since our finite understanding of an infinite God will always be incomplete. That is one more reason why our Catholic Faith will always be a journey and an adventure: we can always grow in our knowledge, understanding, and love of God.
Make sure to mark your calendar to attend our annual Parish Picnic when we celebrate our patronal feast of Saints Peter & Paul on Sunday, June 26, following the 10am Mass. Let us know how many in your family are coming by adding your name to the sign-up sheets in the Holy Family Cenacle.
May God bless you!
14th Annual Corpus Christi Procession
After 10am Mass, Sun, Jun. 19 @ OLQH
This even will include Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Eucharistic Procession around the grounds, & Benediction. Newly Confirmed & First Communicants are especially encouraged to participate. (Children, please wear your First Communion dresses & suits.) In case of rain, the procession will take place inside the church.
The Solemnity of Pentecost marks the end of the Church’s observance of the Easter Season. This celebration commemorates the coming of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, the Blessed Mother, and the whole Church. The coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost also fulfills God’s revelation of Himself in three divine persons. Though existing eternally, the Father is made known through His creation, the Son in the Incarnation, and now the Holy Spirit is revealed as “the Lord and giver of life, Who proceeds from the Father and the Son” (Nicene Creed). Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, promised to send His Church the Comforter, the Advocate, Who would strengthen and confirm us in our faith. “Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of your love!”
The period of time between the Lord’s Ascension into heaven and the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday has always been observed as a special time of prayer. Scripture tells us that Jesus ascended to heaven 40 days after Easter and Pentecost occurred 50 days after Easter. The Lord instructed His disciples to spend the nine days between those events praying. This is the origin of the Catholic practice of the “novena” (from the Latin word for “nine”.) A novena consists of praying for some particular intention for nine consecutive days. Sometimes this is expressed in prayers or practices which are observed over nine weeks or nine months (such as the custom of attending Mass for nine consecutive First Fridays). It’s just another example of one of the those “Catholic things” that we didn’t just make up, but comes from the scriptures and the practice of the early Church.
Our parish’s fiscal year ends June 30, 2022. Although finances are not my first responsibility (nor my strongest trait!), they are a necessary burden for a pastor. As your pastor I wish to thank you for your financial support of our parish, and remind you of our continuing needs. After your support of our parish through the regular Sunday envelope or offering, the best way to benefit SSPP is a gift to the Diocesan Annual Appeal. Since we have met our target, every additional dollar given to the DAA is returned to us 100% (with NO deductions or assessments). May God bless you for your generosity, as your gifts are a blessing to our parish!
May God bless you!