Jottings from Fr. J.J.

HOW BLESSED WE ARE!- You can help another family have a Merry Christmas.  There are still MANY families who will not have gifts and food this year without your help.  So what do you need to do?  Give Carolyn a call at 586-557-3757 or email her at *protected email* She will provide you with a family, their names, ages, sizes and a needs/wish list.  You would then purchase a piece of clothing for each member, a toy for each kid, and groceries or a gift card for their Christmas dinner.  You would gift wrap them and deliver them to the families home or parish by Dec. 20th.

OUR SERVENTS ARE MOVING ON- We have several members of St. Anastasia who are in the formation process to become permanent deacons who will formally serve in the Church after ordination.  Part of the formation process is to take on an assignment in a parish (other than your home parish) and shadow an “already” ordained deacon and learn from the parish and the mentor.  Two St. A’s men began this month at their internship assignments:  Kevin Tietz, and Tom Sliney.  Kevin will serve at St. Ephrem in Sterling Heights. and Tom will serve at St. Andrew’s in Rochester.  Please keep them in your prayers.  The journey can often times be stressful, but these are good men and they will be a blessing to the ordained ministry and the Church.

If you know of someone who would be an excellent candidate for the permanent deaconate, the priesthood, or the religious life, please let me know.  I would be happy to speak with them and help them discern.

FILL YOUR BELLY AND HELP OUR KIDS- You can kill two birds with one stone (2 calling birds, that is).  If you eat at either Pizza Papalis, or Rio Wraps this Tuesday Dec. 17th from 5pm to close at 300 John R Rd.(across from Oakland Mall) not only will you hear live Christmas carols, but 20% of all sales from the day will be donated to our teens (toward next summer’s mission trip).  You must bring a coupon, so pick one up in the parish office or in the bulletin. Take a break from the Christmas shopping hustle and bustle and join in on the fun.

IT’S NOT TOO LATE!- Maybe you missed the parish Reconciliation service held here a couple days ago.  Or should I say, maybe you purposely missed the parish Reconciliation service held here a couple days ago.  Often times each of us hold our own sentiments and anxieties about the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  Recent studies show that the majority of Catholics have either stopped going to confession altogether or they go only rarely. No one denies that the long lines of Catholics waiting to go to confession on Saturdays have disappeared.  To be honest, with Fr. Moses gone till the middle of January, I almost feel a little relief.  As someone who celebrates this sacrament from both viewpoints—that is, both as a penitent and as an officiating priest—I’m convinced that the Sacrament of Reconciliation is a gift for today’s Church.

In invite you to focus on what’s most important.  Sure, the examination of conscience, sorrow for sin, and telling the sins to the priest are all very important, but you will have a more positive experience of the sacrament if your focus is on what Jesus does. In the Sacrament of Reconciliation Jesus announces to us, through the Church and its ministers, that our sins are forgiven and that we are loved by God.  There is a deep peace that comes from being brought back into harmony with God, with sisters and brothers and with the whole of creation.

Sin, in the Catholic perspective, is not merely “breaking the rules.” For the mature Christian, sin is understood in relation to love. God has loved us so much, and we have so often failed to return that love. When we examine our lives in the light of the message of Jesus we find that Jesus calls us to wholeness, to maturity; he came that we might have life and have it abundantly. For an adult Christian, sin is more than just breaking the rules; sin is the failure to grow. Sin is being today like you were yesterday. Sin is the failure to respond to the love God has shown us in our Lord Jesus.

We have other vicariate communal reconciliation services:

  • Monday Dec. 16, Shrine of the Little Flower, Royal Oak
  • Monday Dec. 16, Church of the Transfiguration, Southfield
  • Tuesday Dec. 17, O.L. of Sorrows, Farmington
  • Tuesday Dec. 17, St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills

Give yourself a real gift for Christmas and attend.

God bless,
Fr. J.J.