Article from Parish Bulletin – The Arrow on December 9, 2018
Here we are, the second week of Advent! How is it going for you? To help make the most of these next few weeks, I’d like to offer a few suggestions as much as for myself as for your consideration.
Prioritize prayer. Spend fifteen minutes daily with God. The best way to welcome the Savior at Christmas is to spend time with him. Set aside 15 minutes in your day for God and protect it. Perhaps read a passage of scripture, pray a decade of the rosary, or a favorite for me, just be still in God’s presence and listen for what God might be trying to say to you!
Form an “Advent habit.” Advent is a great time to start a holy habit. Maybe it’s replacing negative comments with positive ones. Consider limiting your time on your electronic devices: no Facebook during the work day, no texting during dinner or while someone is talking to you. Or, make a habit getting up ten minutes early so you can spend that 15 minutes in prayer each day. See if you can keep up your “Advent habit” through the Christmas season.
Do acts of random kindness. A little kindness goes a long way. Hold the door for people and smile at them. Let someone with less things go in line before you at the supermarket. Don’t be afraid to offer a hand when you see someone in need. Jesus said, “Amen I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers or sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Attend Mass and/or Adoration. Try to add attending Mass on a weekday. Or, plan on spending time in adoration in church on the Thursdays during Advent. Church will be left open after the 8:30 am Mass until 9 pm. Take advantage of this quiet time and prayerful space.
Consider any one of these as a way to help prepare your mind and heart to welcome Jesus into our hearts as the honored guest this Christmas.
Once again for Christmas… OPLATKI, the Christmas wafer. These will be available on the kiosk at the back of church and also in the Parish Ministry Center.
The Christmas wafer is a tradition celebrated in Poland, Lithuania, Slovakia, and some regions of Italy. The wafer is identical in composition to the host that is used during Catholic Mass and is embossed with Christmas related images. Family members and friends break off a small piece of the wafer and give it to one another, along with a blessing, as a symbol of forgiveness, reminding each other of the importance of Christmas, God and family. An explanation of this custom is provided on the envelope that contains 2 wafers. A suggested offering of three dollars helps us with the cost of having the OPLATKI available.
Finally, the second collection today is for the Retired Religious. Many senior sisters, brothers, and religious order priests served for years with little or no pay. Many of these communities do not have enough funds to meet their retirement needs. Your generous support helps provide what is need at this time. Thank you for your care and support!
Have a peaceful week ahead.
With you a Christian. For you a priest.
Father Carl Morello – Pastor of St. Giles Parish