In less than four weeks, we become one united parish in Wilmette. On June 30th at 10:00am, we will celebrate our oneness at a Mass at picnic. Please join us! The committee has been working very hard to make the day a success. Please
click the link
to send an RSVP so we can have plenty of lunch. We will have volunteers to help those with mobility difficulty – let us know in the “message to the host” section of the response form if you will need assistance. You can also call either parish office to inform us of your presence and your needs. Street parking is available, but for those who are able we suggest using the Saint Joseph lot and walking to the park.
The prospect of change is difficult. I assure you that my love for the people of Wilmette is strong and constant. I will strive to serve you humbly and joyfully and will invite your service to one another and to our wider communities, local and global. With two great patrons of our new parish and with the strong history of faithful discipleship among us, we will no doubt prevail over whatever difficulties we encounter.
, the patron of the Universal Church, the husband of Mary, and the earthly father of Jesus, gives great example of humility and generosity. He said “yes” to God’s plan without question or self concern. He’s been a hero of mine since I was a child. Ever since my mother’s death in 1983, I have had her statue of Jesus, Joseph and Mary placed prominently in my homes. A man who put his faith into action can give us all a great model. We couldn’t have a better patron as we begin our new parish.
Saint Francis Xavier
, a young missionary who traveled far from his homeland to preach the Good News to those who did not know Christ, will help us as we answer the call to be missionary disciples. Francis Xavier, who experienced his own conversion during a retreat directed by Saint Ignatius, will spur us on to our own individual and collective conversion and inspire us to be missionaries in our own lives. He was known for his joyful disposition. I pray his joy may be ours.
As conversion, humility, generosity, joy, discipleship and obedience to God’s will formed our new parish patrons, may they be characteristics for each of us as we move forward in faith. May bitterness and negativity and resistance to change subside. May openness, enthusiasm and understanding thrive. May we give ourselves and each other the benefit of the doubt and let go of harsh judgments. May the richness of the Catholic community of Wilmette inspire others to return to church and dedicate themselves to the good things our patrons accomplished in their respective days.
Canon Law requires that the decree of unification be published in our community. This decree is the formal announcement of the unity for which we have been working for months. I attach the decree via the
Allow me to thank you for your kind welcome, your patience with me and for your candor along the way. Your emails and signed letters have helped a lot. You have shared ideas and provided constructive criticism. You have offered suggestions. I encourage you to continue to communicate with me (and please sign your letters since I will only read signed ones) and share your ideas, hopes and dreams.
I thank Fathers Sheridan and Harnett and Monsignor Mayall for sharing their wisdom and for being willing to help in any way. As we move forward:
- I wish Father Sheridan well as he prepares to take some time off as he begins a new chapter in his life, and look forward to his help when he returns.
- I thank Monsignor Mayall for being willing to stay on full time as the Senior Priest Associate.
- Father Rodlin will continue to serve as Associate Pastor of Saints Joseph and Francis Xavier.
- Father Harnett, a great mentor, will help as a retired resident of Saints Joseph and Francis Xavier.
- Father Matthew Spotts, to be ordained on Saturday, will assist us as a part time associate of our new parish beginning in mid July.
- Father Robeth has moved on as he continues to work in the Tribunal.
- Father Laurent will be moving to Saint Peter’s in Skokie.
In the midst of all this change, allow me to share a Scripture passage that has been motivating and inspiring me. Philippians 4:13. “I have strength for everything through him who empowers me”
God does empower. We will have strength for all of this! Let’s go together…