In the Catholic Church, May is a month dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. We honor her (but not worship her) because she said “yes” to be the mother of our Savior. In her trust in God and willingness to always do the will of God, she stands as a model for all Christians.
I was ordained a priest on May 13, 1977. Yes, that was 45 years ago this week. Not only was it the month of May but it was also a day on which we honor Our Lady of Fatima. One of the appearances of Mary to the young children in Portugal took place on this day. Needless to say, I have a great love for the Mother of Our Lord.
But I also think that it is important for us to have a healthy and balanced approach to honoring her. Pope St. Paul VI wrote an excellent encyclical in 1974 that provides us with guidelines for correct Marian devotion. There is a good summary of the encyclical Marialus Cultus at the Marian library of the University of Dayton (https://udayton.edu/imri/mary/m/magisterial-documents-marialis-cultus.php ) but I will mention here just a few of the points he makes.
Pope Paul notes that devotion to Mary should be rooted in the Bible. We should be familiar with and understand correctly the key biblical texts that show the role of Mary. The pope also tells us that authentic Marian devotion needs to be Christ-centered. We honor Mary because of her role in the history of salvation. Authentic Marian devotion always leads us to Jesus. To honor Mary is to honor Jesus. Another important point is that our devotion to Mary should be ecclesial, i.e., in harmony with the tradition of the Church. Mary is honored as Mother of the Church. She is our mother and watches over us. But we should not take part in novel or unusual Marian devotion created by individuals (clergy or lay) who stress the bizarre and miraculous. The internet is cluttered with these people who claim to be Catholic. The Church has a process for approving authentic Marian devotion and we should stick to approved devotions. I mention one more point noted by Pope Paul: he tells us Marian prayer is liturgical. She has a special place in the liturgical life of the Church. We remember her at every Mass, but we also have Marian feast days spread across the liturgical year. These are the primary ways the Church celebrates and honors Mary. This does not mean that there is not a place for private devotions to Mary. In fact, the third part of the encyclical speaks about the special place of the rosary and the angelus as Marian prayer. But Mary is honored in a particular way when the Church celebrates one or another of her feast days.
So let us honor Mary during this month of May. We pray with her to Jesus her Son. We can rely on her intercession as well. If you do not usually include Mary in your prayer, this might be a good time to give it a try. If you are a strong Marian devotee, reflect on the guidelines given to us by Pope St. Paul VI.
Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you.
Once again, the 11:00 am Mass on Sunday will be outdoors on the school grounds.
May He Rest in Peace
On Monday, May 9, Bishop Robert Brom, fourth Bishop of the Diocese of San Diego, was called home by the Lord. He was born in Arcadia, WI on September 18, 1938. He was ordained a priest on December 18, 1963. After 20 years, he was ordained a bishop and installed as Bishop of Duluth, MN on May 23, 1983. Subsequently Bishop Brom was appointed coadjutor Bishop of San Diego on April 22, 1989. The following year he continued on to become the Bishop of the Diocese.
For 23 years he served faithfully as Bishop of this Diocese and guided it in times of joy and times of struggle. His achievements were many as new parishes were formed, churches built and high schools strengthened. He retired on September 18, 2013 but continued to live and minister in the Diocese of San Diego, particularly through his leadership in prison ministry. His Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Tuesday, May 17 at St. Therese of Carmel Church.
Please remember Bishop Brom in your prayers. May his soul and the souls of all the faithfully departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.
Honoring Mary in the Month
Eight Beautiful Ways to Honor Mary throughout the Month of May
What is the relationship between the Catholic Church and other Christian religions? Are their beliefs and practices really so different? Are we allowed to pray in non-Catholic churches? What does it mean to be ecumenical?
Fr. Ron recently taught a four-week course on Ecumenism. He will give a summary of what he covered and answer questions from participants. The session will last one and a half hours with one hour for presentation and thirty minutes for questions. The program will only be offered in the evening on Tuesday, May 17, at 7:00-8:30 pm. The morning session has been canceled due to the funeral of Bishop Brom. The session is free and no reservations are necessary.
At the end of March, we began to share the Grief Newsletters that have been prepared by Hospice of North Coast. There are 12 issues in all. Before Easter, we shared the first three issues. You can still see them in the newsletter section of our parish website. Now we resume sharing one each week, beginning today with issue #6 which you can access below.
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"Catholic Trivia”... not because they are trivial but because these might be things that not everyone knows. Test your knowledge by reading the five questions, remember your answers (or jot them down), then click the link below to find the answers.
Which woman's name is the Hebrew equivalent for the name Mary?
Which two gospels tell us about Mary giving birth to Jesus?
Which gospel speaks about "the mother of Jesus" two times but never uses her name?
What biblical event in Mary's life is celebrated with a liturgical feast on May 31?
What Marian feast is celebrated on the day after Pentecost each year?
If you have other members of your family or your friends who would like to be on our email list, just let me know or write to Mary McLain at email@example.com We will be pleased to add them.
Paul and Barnabas proclaim the good news in many places.
A song of praise to God.
John describes his vision of a new heaven and a new earth.
Jesus gives his disciples a new commandment: love one another.
Background on the Gospel Reading
Today's Gospel again comes from the Gospel of John. Like last week, today we hear words spoken by Jesus before his death and Resurrection. Jesus is teaching at the Last Supper.
John's Gospel does not include an institution of the Eucharist narrative; instead, Jesus washes his disciples' feet. Immediately after, Jesus predicts his betrayal by Judas. Today's Gospel follows that prediction. It can be read as a continuing explanation of Jesus' act of washing his disciples' feet. It begins with the announcement that this is the moment when the Son of Man will be glorified. This theme continues throughout John's Passion. Jesus will be glorified in his death on the cross and in his Resurrection, and the disciples will glorify Jesus in the love they show.
John's Gospel does not present a sentimental view of love. This is a type of love that is shown in service and sacrifice. It is difficult to choose to love when faced with hatred and anger. Jesus tells the disciples that all will know that they are his disciples because of the love they show for one another. This description of the early Christian community will be repeated in the Acts of the Apostles: “See how they love one another.” Christian love is the hallmark of Christianity. We see it lived in the witness of the martyrs. We see it in the example of the lives of the saints. We see it in the holy women and men who live and love daily, making small and large sacrifices for others.
This message can be expressed in many ways. Give this one a try. It’s by Newsboys.
The Return of Soup Suppers
We are happy to announce that plans are under way to resume our weekly Soup Suppers. However, they will now be held on Thursdays in the parish center. We are also happy to announce that Mark Anderson has agreed to serve as our new coordinator.
Many thanks to Dr. Mike McCarthy who has served as Soup Czar for so many years. We thank him for his dedication to this ministry and all his hard work.
There will be an organizational meeting on Tuesday, May 24 at 6:30 pm in the Parish Center. Those who are willing to volunteer some time for this important ministry are invited to attend. If you cannot attend, please call the parish office and leave your name, phone number and email address. Mark Anderson will contact you.
Ye Olde Garage
The "Shoppe" will be open this Sunday, May 15 for the "Once a Month Sunday Sale". Please take a few minutes after Sunday Masses to come and see what we have to offer.
Regular hours for the Ye Olde Garage are Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
If you are a parent or grandparent of a student at St. Patrick School, why don't you come a few minutes early before pick-up time and browse for spring and summer children clothing?
Million Meals Event
The deacons of the Diocese of San Diego have come together to live out their mission to serve the needy by coordinating an event that provides a million nutritious meals to children and families living in extreme poverty.
About half of the meals will be sent to Tijuana, Mexico, for distribution by the Franciscan Sisters at Casa de los Pobres, a non-profit organization that has served the poor for decades. The meals also will be sent to charities serving the poor in the Philippines and Africa.
To do this, the deacons plan to raise $250,000 dollars to be able to purchase the food ingredients and to recruit 3,000 volunteers to pack the equivalent of one million meals over one fun, inspiring weekend.
Our parish deacons will be accepting donations on the patio this weekend May 14-15. You may also wish to volunteer to help pack the meals on the weekend of June 11-12 at Cathedral Catholic High School. For more information or to volunteer go to www.sdcatholic.org/millionmeals
Jesús les dijo, “Les doy un mandamiento nuevo: que se amen los unos a los otros, como yo los he amado; y por este amor reconocerán todos que ustedes son mis discípulos”.Cuando fuimos a las clases de catecismo se nos dijo de que era bien importante aprendernos de memoria los 10 mandamientos. Los 10 mandamientos que Moisés recibió de Dios para el Pueblo de Dios. Y todavía ahora los mandamientos son importantes y son usados como la base para vivir nuestra vida cotidiana. Pero en este 5º Domingo de Pascua, leemos que Jesús da un mandamiento nuevo, y es, “que nos amemos los unos a los otros como Él nos ha amado”, y que por medio de este amor reconocerán que somos seguidores de Jesús. Personalmente, siempre que oigo estas palabras de Jesús, me incomoda. Porque Jesús me está diciendo a mí, “si quieres ser mi discípulo, ama a todos”. Y eso no es fácil. Jesús amo hasta el extremo, dando su vida para que todos tengamos vida eterna. Jesús nos pide que amemos de la misma manera, dándonos para que otros tengan vida. A veces nos preocupamos porque no están viniendo nuestros hijos u otros familiares a misa; o porque les interesa ir a otra Iglesia que no es nuestra Iglesia. Son varias razones, no solamente una. Pero para nosotros nos corresponde a cumplir con el mandamiento nuevo que nos ha dado Jesús, “amar a todos y así reconocerán que son mis discípulos”. Dios se encarga del resto.
Por favor escuchen a los enlaces proveídos, espero que les ayude en su reflexión.