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From Our Pastor...

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Celebrated every year on August 15th, the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary commemorates the death of Mary and her bodily assumption into heaven, before her body could begin to decay — a foretaste of our own bodily resurrection at the end of time. Because it signifies the Blessed Virgin’s passing into eternal life, it is the most important of all Marian feasts. Because the Assumption falls on a Monday this year, the Feast is celebrated but it is not a holy day of obligation. Mass for the Assumption on Monday, August 15th, will be at 7:00 a.m.

Our Parish School Building

As the restoration of our School building continues, I will keep you up to date on our progress. In the meantime, our Annunziata Learning Center and Parish School of Religion have moved to Faris Hall on the lower level of Church. The children of our Learning Center will begin their new school year on Wednesday, August 24th, and our Parish School of Religion will begin on Sunday, September 11th. Our gratitude to Men’s Bible Study, St. Vincent de Paul Society, Cornerstone Women’s Bible Study, and A.A. for all their help and support!

Vicar for Strategic Planning for the Archdiocese of St. Louis

As we pray, and continue to live our Faith, and share the gift of the “Joy of the Gospel”, I wanted to share with you some reflections from Father Christopher Martin, whom the Archbishop asked to assist Him in the critical pastoral planning for our Archdiocese: “As we continue to journey through the ‘All Things New” strategic planning process, I can sense within myself, and I hear from others, a lot of anxiety. A lot of “what if this or that” conversations taking place tend to leave people feeling more anxious. The truth is we don’t know what the future will look like in our Archdiocese. Heck, you and I don’t know what tomorrow is going to look like.

Anxiety is one way to respond. Trust in God is the other.

Anxiety’s deadly spiritual relative is discouragement, which means to be disheartened — to have your heart taken out. Trust’s spiritual relative is encouragement — to have your heart placed within you. In the Old Testament, when the Israelites were journeying from Egypt to the Promised Land and encountering all sorts of obstacles along the way, they became anxious and discouraged. Joshua reminded them of where to place their hope: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:19)

The world is full of things the devil can use to rob us of peace and to increase anxiety and discouragement within us. So what should we do when we sense these things growing inside out hearts? We can heed the words and the admonition of St. Paul who writes:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)


From Our Archbishop...

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

The All Things New pastoral planning process is going to bring historic change to the Archdiocese of St. Louis. As we start to look at potential plans for parish and school restructuring I’d like to reflect on change — because change is hard!

There are a lot of theological things that might be said about change: how the Ascension or the conversion of Gentiles changed things for the early Church; how the gradual codification of the seven sacraments across several centuries or the creation of the seminary system after the Reformation changed things for the Church.

But maybe the most helpful perspective on change comes from the experience of parents.

With each stage of a child’s growth — in the womb, infant, toddler, adolescent teenager, young adult — parents constantly need to discover new ways of parenting.

With every transition, the temptation is to stay stuck in the previous mode of parenting. It’s tempting for parents to keep the child suspended — in their imagination — in some earlier phase of life and to fail to make the transition that growth requires. But we all know what happens when parents continue to treat their teenagers as toddlers or their young adults as teenagers!

Naturally, with every transition, there’s grieving. That’s legitimate. Something good happens in each stage of a child’s growth, and something is lost when the next phase comes. But parents can’t hold on to the earlier phases, no matter how golden they may have been while they lasted. Successful parenting requires accepting the changes, then investing time and energy in learning new ways of carrying out their mission.

The experience of parents contains important lessons for us as we face our own changes in the coming years.

The footprint of the archdiocese — in terms of parishes and schools — is about to change. We can and should grieve that change. Good things happened and some of them will be lost. But we can’t suspend the life of the archdiocese — in our imagination, and our way of operating — at a previous “golden age.” Like parents, we need to recognize the change that’s happened and invest our time and energy in a new way of carrying out our mission.

When Jesus ascended into heaven the disciples remained, for a time, gazing

upward, locked in an old way of relating to his body. Then two angels said to them: “Men of Galilee, why are you standing there looking at the sky?” The disciples needed to be spurred into the next phase of the Church’s life. They needed to go back to Jerusalem, to prepare to be anointed by the Holy Spirit and to enter into a new relationship with Jesus and the world. We stand in a similar position today.

We can and should celebrate all we’ve accomplished in the previous decades, even the previous 200 years. Great things have happened in the Archdiocese of St. Louis!

But we can’t simply keep gazing at those great things, expecting some previous mode of the Church’s life to continue. Change has come upon us, whether we want it to or not.

 It’s time for us to go to the upper room, to pray for a new anointing by the Holy Spirit, and to enter into a new way of carrying out the mission of being Jesus’ Church.


Bulletins

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Permission to podcast/stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE with license #737378-A. All rights reserved.

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Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting

Victims of sexual abuse, in addition to contacting civil authorities, are asked to come forward in order to receive pastoral assistance.

Reports of abuse may be made to any Pastor or to:
Sandra Price, Executive Director
Office of Child & Youth Protection
(314) 792-7271

sandraprice@archstl.org

Missouri Department of Social Services Children’s Division Hotline Reporting Number:

1-800-392-3738

Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services

Adult Abuse and Neglect Hotline:

1-800-392-0210