A New Decade
January 2020
Archbishop Kurtz Returns
On Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz , Archbishop Kurtz and Chancellor Dr. Brian Reynolds discuss Archbishop’s treatment for cancer and the five months he was away from the Archdiocese being treated at the Duke Cancer Institute.
To view other segments from January's Conversations go here .
Announcement of Easter and the Moveable Feasts
Know, dear brothers and sisters, that, as we have rejoiced at the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, so by leave of God's mercy we announce to you also the joy of his Resurrection, who is our Savior.
On the twenty-sixth day of February will fall Ash Wednesday, and the beginning of the fast of the most sacred Lenten season.
On the twelfth day of April you will celebrate with joy Easter Day, the Paschal feast of our Lord Jesus Christ.
On the twenty-fourth day of May will be the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ.
On the thirty-first day of May, the feast of Pentecost.
On the fourteenth day of June, the feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.
On the twenty-ninth day of November, the First Sunday of the Advent of our Lord Jesus Christ, to whom is honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen. 
By Father Steven Reeves

This is the Announcement of Easter and the Moveable Feasts for 2020, an optional proclamation which may be sung or recited after the Gospel on the solemnity of the Epiphany. Because so much of the Church’s liturgical life revolves around the seasons of Lent and Easter, knowing in advance when they fall each year is very important. But determining the date of Easter is not a simple job: it depends on both the solar and lunar calendars, with leap years thrown in every now and then for good measure.* Thus, the calculation of the date of Easter, known as the computus, was one of the most important but also most complex mathematical tasks in the ancient and medieval Church. Once the date of Easter had been determined, it and the other important dates based on it would be announced on January 6, the feast of the Epiphany.

Now that we can use technology to instantly generate calendars for any time in the past or future, such a proclamation is not strictly necessary, which is why it is now optional. But whether or not we hear these dates sung at Mass, I believe there is still value in this tradition.

For one thing, this tradition highlights how Christ’s coming has sanctified all of creation, using even the sun, moon, and stars to proclaim the Gospel. On the feast of the Epiphany, we recall how God used the stars to communicate to the Magi the good news that a great king had been born in Bethlehem. In an analogous way, since the Council of Nicaea the Church has used the moon and the sun to establish the date on which she announces the good news that Christ has risen from the tomb. As the psalmist sings, “The heavens declare the glory of God!” (Psalm 19:1).

More importantly, the Epiphany proclamation reminds us that the feasts we celebrate throughout the year are not isolated, disconnected events. The entire story of the Gospels, from Christ’s birth at Christmas and being revealed at Epiphany all the way through to his death, resurrection, ascension, and sending the Holy Spirit at Pentecost form one continuous arc that we call the Paschal Mystery. Christmas and Epiphany cannot be separated from Good Friday and Easter Sunday. They are all part of Christ’s single great act of pouring himself out for us, his self-emptying which began in his incarnation and culminated in his death on the cross so that we could be lifted up with him into the Father’s glory.

The seemingly-antiquated tradition of the Epiphany proclamation makes clear that today’s feast is not just another scene in the Christmas story. It is much more than the chance to add the exotic Magi alongside the humble shepherds in our nativity scenes. It is an essential part of the way by which God chose to save us. The light of Christ has appeared in our lives, inviting us to follow the star that leads us far from home: first to the manger, but then on to Calvary, the empty tomb, and the upper room. Christ has appeared to us: come, let us adore him!

*If you’re curious, Easter is the Sunday after the first full moon after the spring.

Father Steven Reeves is associate pastor at Saint Boniface and Saint Patrick.
Helping Teens from a Place of Common Experience
Roy Petitfils, Catholic author, speaker, and psychotherapist, will lead a free session for parents, “What Teens Want You to Know and Won’t Tell You,” on Wednesday, January 29, 2020, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at St. Xavier High School. 

Roy’s latest book is Helping Teens with Stress, Anxiety, and Depression where he offers his personal experience, advice, and faith to give parents, pastors, teachers, and youth leaders the knowledge, courage, and tools they need to step in, make a difference, and be the presence of Christ for teens in crisis.

In the preface to his book, Roy shares the following:

“The prospect of helping teens sort through the emotional ups, downs, and turnarounds they experience can be daunting, even for seasoned parents, educators, ministers, and other caring adults. This leaves us in an interesting place: anxious and fearful adults tasked with helping anxious and fearful young people. At first glance, this might seem an impossible mess. Yet the more aware we are of our own fears and concerns, the more we will be able to relate to young people. The substance of our worries may be different, but we will meet them from a place of common experience, which ultimately strengthens our potential to help.”

During the 2019-20 school year our nine Catholic high schools and 40 Catholic elementary schools are partnering with the Archdiocese of Louisville Offices of Catholic Schools, Family Ministries, Faith Formation, and Youth and Young Adults to offer a series of educator and parent sessions addressing social issues our young people are experiencing.

We invite all parents to attend this session to gain insights, network with other parents, and strengthen their skills to nurture and support their children.

Leisa Schulz is Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of Louisville.
Archbishop's Tweets
Follow  @ArchbishopKurtz on Twitter for more of his tweets.

January 10
Wonderful visit with Bishop Alphonso Long of Vinh in Vietnam. We have a fine mutual agreement.

December 21
A brisk morning walk along the Ohio is just what the doctor ordered as the great feast of Christmas draws near.

December 20
The Filipino Catholic community gathered at St. Albert Church for Simbang Gabi - novena preparing for Christmas. Great faith and love abounded - & good food afterwards.
Upcoming Events
Resources & Recommendations
This month, we're highlighting some helpful and timely resources for Catholics throughout the Archdiocese. We encourage you to check out the resources below and get involved.

What Teens Want You to Know (But Won’t Tell You)
Parents are invited to a special presentation by Roy Petitfils, who will unpack the growing epidemic of teen mental health issues and share practical tips on what parents can do to help their youth. This presentation will be held on Wednesday, January 29, 2020, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Saint Xavier High School (1609 Poplar Level Road, Louisville). Roy Petitfils is a Catholic author, speaker, and psychotherapist in private practice who has more than 25 years of experience ministering to youth and young adults in parishes, dioceses, and schools. More about Roy Petitfils and his work can be found here .

Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz
Archbishop Kurtz is back and taping new episodes of Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz! January’s episode features a conversation with Chancellor Dr. Brian Reynolds about Archbishop’ health journey since being diagnosed with cancer last spring and a discussion with Superintendent Leisa Schulz about Catholic schools and how they serve students with special learning needs. Archbishop Kurtz also welcome guest Charlie Leis, President of EdChoiceKY, to talk about scholarship tax credits and the upcoming Kentucky legislative session. 

Conversations airs on the Faith Channel (Spectrum channels 19 and digital channel 279) on Tues. at 7 p.m., Wed. at 10 a.m., Fri. at 7 p.m., and Sat. at 4 p.m. It is on radio stations WLCR 1040 AM, Breadbox Media, and WLHN 95.3 FM in Meade County. In addition, Conversations can be downloaded for no charge through iTunes. Conversations also is available on Bardstown Cable Channel 19 (BRTV) at 7 p.m. on the first two Monday nights of the month and on Bardstown’s PLG TV on Tuesday afternoons at 4 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Conversations is online here .

Catholic Schools
During January, the Archdiocese joins dioceses around the country in celebrating Catholic Schools Week from January 26 to February 1. This timing also coincides with National School Choice Week. To learn more about Catholic Schools Week and school choice initiatives see the segments in Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz with Superintendent Leisa Schulz and EdChoiceKY president Charlie Leis . Also check out the Catholic schools Facebook page .

Days of Human Dignity
January also features several events the deal with issues of human dignity. To find out more about these events and for resources regarding the issues, see this page .

Catholic Conference of Kentucky
The 2020 legislative session kicks off in Kentucky in January, and Catholic Conference of Kentucky is the organization that represents the Church and the state’s four Roman Catholic dioceses in public policy matters on both the state and federal level. To keep up with this session’s legislative priorities, go here or visit this Facebook page .

This article from The Record presents a summary of legislative priorities for the 2020 session.
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