January - Meditative Prayer

As we continue our Year of Prayer at St. Josaphat Parish, the month of January is devoted to learning meditative prayer.  Many people associate meditation with non-Christian or eastern religions. So it is important to distinguish what we mean by meditation.
  • Non-Christian meditation practices aim at emptying the mind.
  • Christian meditation engages the mind in prayer.
Catholic meditation seeks to use the faculties of the mind to know the Lord, understand his love for us, and to move into deeper union with him. Use of the mind "is necessary in order to deepen our convictions of faith, prompt the conversion of our heart, and strengthen our will to follow Christ." (Catechism, 2708)

Christian meditation immerses us in the Trinity: we surrender ourselves to the Holy Spirit, the master of prayer, so that he can unite us to Christ and perfect our prayer to the Father.

This month we will have an opportunity to experience a popular form of meditative prayer known as Taizé.  Our Taizé service will be on Thursday, January 24th at 7pm in the church.  

What is Taizé?  "It is a time to rest in God, to let the words listened to and sung penetrate one's being." -  Br. John, a Taizé monk.   At a Taizé service the church is dimly lit, quiet and still. There is a soft and inviting light brought forth by the candles for the service and those being held by people in attendance.  The service consists of reflective music and chants, readings and time for silence and quiet prayer. The most important aspect is the silence.  To just sit and be with God as we open our hearts to Him in prayer.

Taizé prayer is the creation of a monastic community in Taizé, France, founded in the 1940s by a Swiss man known as Br. Roger.  It was initially begun to foster ecumenism between Catholic and Protestant communities. But it has grown in popularity and spread around the globe.

St. John Paul II visited theTaizé community in France and said:  "One passes through Taizé as one passes close to a spring of water...the traveler stops, quenches his thirst, and continues on his way...[the community] wants, in prayer and silence, to enable you to drink the living water promised by Christ, to know his joy, to discern his presence, to respond to his call, then to set out again to witness to his love and to serve your brothers and sisters."

I hope you will be able to join us for this beautiful night of prayer and meditation.  Please mark your calendars and save the date for our Taizé Prayer Service on January 24th at 7pm.

God Bless,
Fr. Francis  

January Theme: Meditation
Prayer of the Week

St. Gemma Galgani wrote this prayer in her diary on New Year's Eve 1895-1896.  She only lived to be 25, dying of tuberculosis in 1903. She's the first saint to live in the 20th  Century.  It is still apropos for us today:

"During this new year I resolve to begin a new life. I do not know what will happen to me during this year. But I abandon myself entirely to you, my God. And my aspirations and all my affections will be for You. I feel so weak, dear Jesus, but with Your help I hope and resolve to live a different life, that is, a life closer to You."

In Need Of...

Liturgical Ministers
Would you like to serve as an Usher or Lector?  It's easy, and we would love to have you! Please contact Mary Jane Sullivan at the parish office for details at maryjane@stjosaphatparish.org.

Helping Hands
Our Helping Hands outreach is requesting adult sized winter gloves and hats to help keep our community's visitors warm in these colder months.  Socks and men's white t-shirts are always appreciated!  You can drop off donations at the rectory any time.

Important Upcoming Dates!

January 5 - Men's Spirituality

January 6 - The Epiphany of the Lord

January 10 - Dine Around: Broken Barrel

January 10 - Parish Pastoral Council

January 13 - Youth Group

January 24 - Taizé Service

February 23 - Unity Gala

Dine Around
Broken Barrel
2548 N. Southport Ave.
Thursday, January 10, 5-8pm
10% of sales goes back to SJS
Men's Spirituality
The Men's Spirituality Group meets on the first and third Saturday of each month (October - May) at 6:30am in the Red Door Meeting Room of the Rectory.  Participants use a resource to guide their discussion and prayer. 
All men of the Parish and their friends are welcome. Our next meeting is :
Saturday, January 5th
Women's Group
All women are welcome (all generations, millennials, single, with parish school children or not) to join. Just come to events where you have time or interest. Our mission is to offer  social/fun/community building among parish women; service opportunities;
 spirituality/reflection; and  book club discussion opportunities. Our next meeting is:
Saturday, Jan 26th 9-11a
Book Discussion:
The Witch's Elm
Photo Directory
It's been 10 years since our last parish photo directory - time for an update!  Lifetouch (a Shutterfly company) will have photographers in the rectory  February 4-9.
Everyone who participates will receive a  FREE 8x10" photo and a copy of our parish photo directory.  This project is near and dear to Fr. Francis' heart as it will help him get to know our parishioners even better!
Schedule your photo session HERE
Unity Gala
Join us on Saturday, February 23, 7pm at Moonlight Studios for an evening of celebration at our annual parish fundraiser. This year's event will feature cocktails, appetizers, an exciting Live Auction, and dancing! 
Purchase Tickets HERE 
Questions? email: stephaniepall@gmail.com

Please consider donating sports or concert tickets, restaurant, salon or retail giftcards or bottles of wine valued over $20.  Donations can be brought to the rectory, info can be emailed to trishhaubrich@gmail.com, or submitted online  HERE.
Shop and Support
Shop Minted.com code: FUNDRAISEJOSAPHAT to save 15%, and 15% donated back to SJS

Recycle your floral vases - bring them to Ashland Addison Florist Co. for a donation to St. Josaphat!

Shop smile.amazon.com and select St. Josaphat Parish as your charitable organization, and St. Josaphat gets  5% on eligible items!

Shop sjs.shutterflystorefront.com and 
SJS gets 13%!

Thank you for your support!