Pastor's Message - March 17, 2019
“The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear? The LORD is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid? Hear, O LORD, the sound of my call; have pity on me, and answer me. Of you my heart speaks; you my glance seeks. Your presence, O LORD, I seek. Hide not your face from me; do not in anger repel your servant. You are my helper: cast me not off. I believe that I shall see the bounty of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD with courage; be stouthearted, and wait for the LORD.” ~Psalm 27
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
One of the most profound conversions called for in Lent is a true acceptance of how much God loves us. Despite all of our failures and brokenness He still loves us deeply and that makes all the difference. If our prayer, fasting and almsgiving can free us up to realize this reality – that will make all the difference.
This Tuesday evening, March 19 we begin our Lenten Soup Supper Series in Room 1. We start with a simple meal at 6:00pm followed by a Lenten Presentation or Reflection at 6:45pm. This series is FREE and no registration is required. There will be delicious hearty crock pots of soup with a variety of breads, drinks and cookies. Bring the whole family!
This Tuesday we welcome Fr. Dennis Billy, Retreat Team Leader at the Notre Dame Retreat House who will speak on the theme: “Changing our Hearts: The Season of the Lenten Cross.”
Join us for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament every Tuesday from 1:00 - 3:00pm. The Eucharist is a very great gift indeed. We need God’s grace to open our eyes to understand how significant this gift is!
Stations of the Cross are offered every Friday at 7:00pm in Church - following our fabulous Lenten Fish Dinners. Like the Apostles, come eat fish and then spend some time with Jesus this Lent by experiencing the Stations of the Cross.
May God Bless you this Lent,
Pastor's Message - March 10, 2019
"Be still and know that I am God." ~Psalm 46
Our Diocesan Day of Penance is this Wednesday, March 13, from 12:30pm to 7:00pm.
St. Rita Church will be open for prayer and Eucharistic Adoration during that time. Come, rest and reconnect with the Lord! Guides to confession will be provided for a stress-free experience.
This weekend we celebrate the First Sunday of Lent. It arrives during the season of winter, which brings its own challenges mirroring the many other hardships and sufferings we, or others we know, may have.
Suffering can come from a variety of circumstances, persons, or experiences that can leave us feeling dark, cold and alone. But the good news is that Lent does not end with winter, or as one could say, with despair, because God always reaches out to us with an invitation of His divine love. The good news is that we are never truly alone or without purpose in our suffering.
Lent gives us the opportunity to allow Jesus to transform our sufferings from despair into hope, from darkness into light. By virtue of his cross and resurrection we can be led from sin into forgiveness, from darkness into light, from Lent to Easter, from winter into spring, and from death into eternal life. Let us open our hearts and let God’s mercy fill us!
There are many wonderful opportunities at St. Rita to participate in making Lent a great time to renew your connection to God. We have Eucharistic Adoration, a new Bible Study, Wednesday morning and Saturday afternoon Reconciliation, our Friday Fish Dinners in the parish center followed by Stations of the Cross in Church, and as mentioned earlier, our annual Diocesan Day of Penance. Please check the bulletin or our website for more details.
May God bless you this Lent!
Pastor's Message - March 3, 2019
“Shine like lights in the world as you hold on to the word of life.” ~Philippians 2
This Wednesday is Ash Wednesday. Mass times will be at 8:15am, 9:15am (school Mass) and 7:00pm. The season of Lent marks a significant time of renewal. One of the most profound conversions called for in Lent is a true acceptance of how much God loves us. Despite all of our failures and brokenness He still loves us deeply and that makes all the difference. If our prayer, fasting and almsgiving can free us up to realize this reality – that will make all the difference.
Registered parishioners will be receiving a “Lenten Schedule of Events” in the mail.
You can download a copy here.
Don’t forget to mark your calendar with all of the special Lenten opportunities.
We will again offer “The Little Black Book” for the season of Lent for prayer and reflection. This booklet provides a daily six minute reflection on the readings of the Lenten Season. The books will be available after Mass this weekend. These books are great for homebound people too. Be sure to bring a book to them and let them know we miss them!
On Tuesday, March 19, our Lenten Soup Suppers will begin for four weeks. Please join us for a simple meal followed by a wonderful Lenten reflection and music in Church.
Stations of the Cross are offered every Friday during Lent at 7:00pm in Church - following our fabulous Lenten Fish Dinners. Like the Apostles, come eat fish and then spend some time with Jesus this Lent by experiencing the Stations of the Cross.
We will have Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction each Tuesday during Lent starting March 12 from 1:00-3:00pm in Church. This is a wonderful Lenten opportunity to just sit in the peace and quiet and in the presence of our loving God.
A new Bible Study begins next week, reflecting on the Gospel of John. It’s not too late to sign-up. See the flyer in this bulletin. This nine-week study time will help you develop a meaningful relationship with Jesus through the scriptures.
Be sure to mark your calendar for the annual DIOCESAN DAY OF PENANCE on Tuesday March 13 from 12:30pm-7:00pm. All Diocesan churches will be open this day for reconciliation. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is also available here at St. Rita every Wednesday at 8:45am (following daily mass), as well as on Saturday afternoons from 3:30pm-4:30pm or by appointment.
May God bless you this week!
Just as a reminder, here are the requirements for adult Catholics regarding fasting and abstinence:
Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are obligatory days of fasting and abstinence for Catholics. In addition, Fridays during Lent are obligatory days of abstinence.
For members of the Latin Catholic Church, the norms on fasting are obligatory from age 18 until age 59. When fasting, a person is permitted to eat one full meal, as well as two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal. The norms concerning abstinence from meat are binding upon members of the Latin Catholic Church from age 14 onward.
Pastor's Message - February 24, 2019
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful . . .
For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you.” ~Luke 6
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
The Gospel reading today is powerful, thought provoking, and certainly challenging. Jesus teaches that to be his follower, we must always strive to show mercy to everyone we meet, even if we consider someone our enemy. We may have our human limitations in this area, but nevertheless, Jesus calls us to go beyond our limited capacity and even "turn the other cheek."
Jesus points the path forward and gives personal examples in the Gospel accounts of the direction we must take. Ultimately the final judgement we will face one day will access not "what" we have accomplished, but "how” we have or have not shown mercy to others.
We read the words in Luke chapter six, "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven."
Our faith allows us to take "the higher road" even though it can, and often does, mean personal suffering. The mystery of suffering is revealed in Jesus and in his radical love for one's enemies on the Cross. This was so that human beings could be saved from sin and death and that we would firmly know that God does and WILL save us through God's divine mercy.
This Wednesday evening we will have our First Eucharist Parent Meeting. Please contact Anita Wagner at the parish office if you would like more information.
Save the Dates: Ash Wednesday will be here soon on Wednesday, March 6 – please note the times for Masses
with distribution of ashes at 8:15am, 9:15am and 7:00pm.
Our annual Diocesan Day of Penance to be held on Wednesday, March 13 in Church
from 12:30pm-7:00pm. Mark your calendar for this stress-free opportunity to reconnect
to our God who loves you.
May God bless you!