One faith community, two worship sites
29 January 2021 Volume 57
January 26, 2021
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This past Sunday, I had the privilege of celebrating the patronal feast of Saint Francis de Sales Seminary. Normally, this feast is celebrated with the priests of the Archdiocese, as they have an opportunity to return to the place that helped form their priesthood in service to the People of God. This year, because of the pandemic, the celebration was limited to an in-house event.
We are very proud of our seminary. Having worked in seminary formation for the first 25 years of my priesthood in the Archdiocese of Chicago, I can testify to the quality of our program and the caliber of the young men invited by God to respond to His call. As I travel throughout the Archdiocese, many people comment about their esteem for the newly ordained and their dedication to the congregations they serve.
In the history of the Church, whenever the Church needed reform because it had strayed from the Gospel mandates, its reform began in the seminary. It only makes sense that those entrusted with the care of the faithful – our priests – would have instilled in them a challenge to live the Gospel faithfully.
The readings for the feast of St. Francis de Sales were very appropriate to the message of vocation. The Gospel was from Mark, about the call of Jesus, inviting the Apostles to follow Him and become fishers of men. The spirituality of St. Francis de Sales is beautiful because it challenges individuals to seek holiness in the tasks that God has already given them in their journey through this world. St. Francis discovered that holiness was not reserved to the religious or clergy; instead, it is an invitation to find God’s work in whatever station of life a person occupies.
Saint Francis de Sales Seminary has produced some great intellectuals, tremendous pastors and wonderful administrators, all who serve Christ’s Body, the Church. In its history, the seminary was also home to a beatified person, Solanus Casey, who is on his way to sainthood. And Joseph Walijewski, whose cause is being promoted by the Diocese of La Crosse, may also join those saintly ranks. I knew Fr. Walijewski personally, and I can readily witness to his kindness and gentle manner.
The one characteristic these remarkable men shared was their humility. They were not the brightest, not the most skilled in administration, and certainly, their seminary professors would never dream that they would be bishops. But, they were holy men who wanted to serve Christ’s Church in love. They achieved what we all seek: that the holiness of our lives will draw others to Christ.
St. Francis de Sales had everything that the world would consider valuable: status, influence, and fortune. His father wanted him to embrace the “good life.” For Francis, the good life was found following Christ in His Church. He did so with the virtue of humility and said often, “not what I want but what God wants.” What better example is there for someone studying for the priesthood.
We must promote and support vocations in the Church. We will need the leadership of competent priests and, most especially, of men who serve with humility and love. They need our prayers and we need their willingness to serve as ordained clerics. Saint Francis de Sales Seminary has enriched the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. Together, let us all listen to His call to LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki
Archbishop of Milwaukee
Ash Wednesday and Palm Sunday Changes
We have all had a year filled with different ways of living and praying. There are fewer people in church, no holy water in the font, less singing at Mass, and no coffee and donuts afterward. Yet we still pray. The Vatican has given instruction on the distribution of ashes, instead of giving ashes in the shape of a cross on the forehead – unsafe in this time of pandemic – we can still receive them by sprinkling on top of the head. We will look a little cleaner, yet we still repent and believe in the Gospel.
This has been directed to us from the Holy See and affirmed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. It recalls the biblical method of putting on sackcloth and ashes as a sign of penance. In Rome and some European monasteries, this is the normal way of distributing ashes on Ash Wednesday. This method can be done safely as long as both the minister and the recipient are wearing masks. The recipient simply kneels, or makes a profound bow, before the minister who sprinkles the ashes without saying anything. While marking the forehead is our custom, placing ashes on top of the head is within our ritual rules as the Roman Missal only says that the minister “places ashes” (imponit cineres) and does not specify how.
Looking a bit ahead to Holy Week, we will be allowed to distribute palms of Palm Sunday this year. In addition, the Chrism Mass will take place on the Tuesday of Holy Week, but attendance will be by invitation only. The Mass will be live streamed.

More information will follow as we approach these Holy celebrations.
Meatloaf Sale

Due to current restrictions and guidelines established by the Archdiocese, we are not able to host in person traditional activities for this year’s event.
Instead, we will be selling our famous Wild Game Meatloafs available for drive thru pick up the weekend of
March 13, 2021

Stay tuned for further details.
The St. Thomas preschool students recently held a Hat and Mitten Drive to help those in need. They collected twenty-five hats, forty pairs of gloves, and two scarves which were donated to the STA Food Pantry. 
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.
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.