One faith community, two worship sites
LOVE ONE ANOTHER
05 March 2021 Volume 62
March 2, 2021
 
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
 
Today I received my second shot of the COVID-19 vaccine. I have been watching the tallies about death, infections and vaccinations, and – for all practical purposes – this information has outdone the stock market for gaining attention. I think reporting on the virus has occupied much of our news for the last year because not everyone has stock, but everyone is susceptible to the coronavirus.
 
Many may wonder when we will return to the pre-pandemic era. Some who are pessimistic offer that we may never return to those pre-COVID days, while others who are more optimistic claim that we will return to a normal state by this fall. No one can know for certain, but, with variants of the disease now multiplying, it is certain that we must continue our vigilance. We will continue to protect ourselves with masks, sanitizers and maintaining safe social distances. We will do what is necessary to protect ourselves from COVID-19.
 
Wouldn’t it be great if we had a vaccine against sin? After all, a virus attacks the body, but sin attacks the soul. St. Matthew explains:
 
What I say to you in darkness speak to the light, what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul, rather be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna. (Mt 10: 27-28)
 
Saint Luke also echoes this sentiment in his Gospel, saying:
 
There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known. Therefore, whatever you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be proclaimed on the housetops. I tell you; my friends do not be afraid of those who kill the body. But after that can do no more. I shall show you to whom to fear. Be afraid of the one who after killing has the power to cast into Gehenna. Yes, I tell you be afraid of that one. (Lk 12: 2-5)
 
These statements offer support for those who face persecution. While we may know what the Church teaches, we oftentimes lack the courage to voice our objections when society confronts us with contradictions. Because of the fear of human consequences, our silence condemns us. We will be called upon to express our faith in our communities, which will more and more marginalize us as a Church. However, we will be held accountable for what we do and not do.
 
In our modern age, we do not talk about sin. For some, it is almost an embarrassment to discuss or we may even fail to recognize sin as a possibility. Those in the secular media who feel competent to talk about spirituality sometimes express their views that everyone is going to heaven. To them, we just live and die, and then the gates of heaven are opened to us. I am sorry to burst their bubble, but we are responsible for our lives and our actions toward our brothers and sisters.
 
Why did Jesus come? He came as our Savior and Redeemer. To save us from what? To redeem us from what? Sin, of course. This is the great expression of the love God has for us, to sacrifice His Son for us. We cannot earn salvation – and we certainly do not deserve it – but, if sin does not exist, then Jesus’ death was a senseless act.
 
We do not have a vaccine for sin, but we do have a treatment for sin. During this time of our Lenten journey, we seek personal spiritual growth through fasting, prayer and almsgiving. At the heart of Lent is always recognizing our sinfulness before God with a desire to amend our lives. Reconciliation (Confession) reminds us of our need to adjust and amend our lives. This sacrament is the treatment for sinfulness while simultaneously strengthening us to seek God’s help through His grace. Ironically, unless we recognize sin and the need for forgiveness, we fail to fear the Lord. To fear Him is to have profound respect for His presence. Let us recognize our sin and the salvation He offers to us as He commands us to LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
                                
Sincerely,
 
Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki
Archbishop of Milwaukee
St Thomas School Endowment News!
 
The St Thomas School Endowment Committee has voted to provide grants to St Thomas Parish students for the 2021/2022 school year who attend a Catholic Grade School or a Catholic High School. They must be parish members for at least 2 years. The grants will be $750 per student for grade school students and $1500 per student for high school students. 
Contact Matt Fehler at 262-210-1603 or
Lloyd Sippel at 758-6480 or
email at lsippel@tds.net
to apply for the grant.
Palm Sunday/Easter Sunday Weekend
Mass Sign-ups
We need your help

The Mass sign-up process has been extremely valuable in helping us understand in person Mass attendance. As we did during our Christmas season, sign-ups will be required for Palm Sunday weekend and Easter Sunday weekend services. This will help us determine if additional Masses need to be scheduled to accommodate our parishioners.

Please use the button below to register for Palm Sunday weekend and Easter Sunday weekend services. Although we require Mass sign-up every weekend, attendance is expected to be higher for Holy Week so we must ensure that everyone registers in advance for these dates. We will have various services to choose from at both St. Clare and St. Thomas. If a particular Mass fills up, please consider a different option that may be available at either church. As always, services will be livestreamed and recorded for those who are unable or uncomfortable attending in person.

Thank you in advance for your help.
Reminder: Please be Aware
 
Once again we have unfortunately seen an increase in people trying to scam our parishioners via email or text. If you receive a message that looks like it is from Fr. Ed asking for gift cards or help, it is not Fr Ed. Please block the sender from your account and delete the message. They have created an email account that appears as if Fr. Ed is sending the message but if you look closely, it is not coming from him.

St. Clare Pastoral Council
Update
Just as Jesus had his Apostles, Saint Clare’s Pastoral Council is a group of caring parishioners that assist in fostering pastoral activity in accordance with Catholicism. We are an advisory group to Father Ed and provide a consultative vote when necessary. The Council engages in a continual process of pastoral planning which takes into account the needs and priorities of the parish, the Archdiocese, and our community.  Pastoral Council provides oversight to the following ministerial committees: Prayer & Worship, Human Concerns, Faith Formation, Christian Women, Men’s Society, and Building & Grounds. We also meet with the Saint Thomas Pastoral Council three times a year. 
 
A few examples of key decisions we recently made are:
  • new Mass times,
  • the parish mission statement,
  •  attendance procedures for Christmas Masses.
  • Recognizing it's important that we continue to create a vibrant community, the Pastoral Council has recently made the decision to form a parish Stewardship Committee, which will be collaborating with the St. Thomas Aquinas Stewardship Committee.   
  • The Council will also begin working together with St. Thomas through Elizabeth Ministry, which provides outreach, service and love in events such as pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, regretted abortion, and stillbirth support.

Pastoral Council is the “eyes and ears” of the parish and we’d love a few more parishioners who are committed to their faith, Christ-focused, and attend Mass regularly to join us. If you are interested in exploring serving a 3-year term, contact Jon Golembiewski at (262) 422-2374.
 
Matthew 16, verse 27 says “For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man for what he has done.”
 
Jon Golembiewski, Pastoral Council Chairperson
Each day, each year brings its challenges and blessings.  Often, we rely on the support and comfort of others...which describes the Prayer Shawl Ministry.  Whether needing a hug, searching for answers, asking for strength, or just knowing somebody cares, we offer our prayer shawl and mini-prayer shawls as physical reminders that someone has prayed for us and took the time to make a physical reminder of how we are always wrapped in God's love.  They are free...take one for yourself or a loved one.  You will find a table dedicated to them in the Gathering Space.

ALSO....we need some kind souls to help us in our outreach.  Crochet or knit a shawl in a triangular shape or as a wrap-around afghan.  We even have some free yarns available by that special table in the Gathering Space.  These "kits" can be delivered to you by the Helping Hearts Ministry if you wish and they will also pick up the finished shawls.
Please contact Kelly at 262-895-7207 to arrange for a delivery or pick up.

If you have any questions, call Nancy at 262-493-3807. 
Bless you, all.
Will you help us?

Our March Fish Fry's are fast approaching and we need volunteers to help make our events a success. Our Parishioners are always generous inn donating their time and it is greatly appreciated.

In order to be more efficient and organized, we are trying something new with our March Fish Fry's. We are requesting that volunteers sign up in advance of our March dates to ensure we have enough people and enough work for everyone. Please click on the sign-up button below and consider donating a little time to serve our parish and community. Note the sign-up is for "Clean up" help only. Our food prep, serving and frying team is already in place. We always need volunteers for clean-up and have several shifts and time slots to choose from.

PLEASE CONSIDER VOLUNTEERING FOR ONE OR MORE FISH FRY'S
AV Ministers Needed


Are you interested and willing to help run slides during Mass, or would you like to learn to help with our Livestreaming used for Masses, Funerals, Weddings, and Special Events? If you have questions or you are interested, please email:

Blaise at bbeaulier@saintthomaswaterford.org
or
MEATLOAF ORDERS DUE BY MARCH 6
We hope you used Sign Up Genius to register for this weekend's mass. At St Thomas we will be utilizing the screens for the worship and at St Clare we will have worship aids available. You can obtain a copy of the worship aid by clicking the button below. You can also register for Mass with the link below.
New Matrix!!!

The Archdiocese published a new matrix last week. Click below to see the new directives.
We would like to highlight and thank a few of our loyal sponsors in each email.
St. Thomas and St Clare thanks you very much!
A complete list of all our sponsors can be found on our website. Please support them whenever possible
St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Clare of Assisi parishes
Waterford and Wind Lake, WI.