Pastor's Message - July 22, 2018
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. In verdant pastures he gives me repose; beside restful waters he leads me; he refreshes my soul. He guides me in right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk in the dark valley I fear no evil; for you are at my side with your rod and your staff that give me courage. You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life; and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD for years to come.” ~Psalm 23
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
Psalm 23 (selected from our readings this weekend) is perhaps the best known and recognized psalm verse in the Bible. It is a psalm that gives comfort and hope. It reminds us that God loves us with a depth of love that is certain and eternal. Our Lord, the Good Shepherd, will never abandon us or our loved ones at the time of death. Psalm 23 is truly powerful. But so are the other psalms!
Originally the psalms were composed as songs and intended to be sung. They are attributed to the work of King David who would sing and dance before the Lord, even when he was ridiculed by onlookers for doing so. Nothing was holding King David back from his love and praise for God. The psalms have endured ever since and express the full gamut and depth of human emotion. The psalms express a longing for God that no other prayer can match. For centuries the psalms have been incorporated into the daily prayer of the church found in every monastery, abbey and cloistered community. Priests and deacons are obligated to pray using the psalms in the Liturgy of the Hours. We pray the psalms at every Mass that is celebrated and sing the psalms at Sunday liturgies because they were intended to be sung.
It is summer-time and a great time to do some extra reading. Check out the psalms in your own bible. You may be surprised a psalm-prayer that matches the longing you have for God in your heart.
May God Bless You!
An Introduction to Sunday's Scripture Readings - July 15, 2018
The Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
In the hope that you will enter more fully into the Mass
||The Mission of the Twelve
In last Sunday's readings, we learned about our calling as prophets, to speak God's truth to those around us. This Sunday's readings continue that theme as Jesus sends his twelve apostles on a mission to preach repentance and to cure the sick.
In our first reading (Amos 7:12-15), we hear the prophet Amos being rejected by the priest Amaziah. Amos responded that he was an ordinary shepherd called from following the flock by God.
Amaziah, priest of Bethel, said to Amos, "Off with you, visionary, flee to the land of Judah! There earn your bread by prophesying, but never again prophesy in Bethel; for it is the king's sanctuary and a royal temple." Amos answered Amaziah, "I was no prophet, nor have I belonged to a company of prophets; I was a shepherd and a dresser of sycamores. The LORD took me from following the flock, and said to me, Go, prophesy to my people Israel."
In our Gospel reading (Mark 6:7-13), Jesus sends his twelve apostles on a mission of preaching and healing. They were to take nothing with them, relying totally on God and the community for their sustenance. Not everyone would accept their message.
Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits. He instructed them to take nothing for the journey but a walking stick- no food, no sack, no money in their belts. They were, however, to wear sandals but not a second tunic. He said to them, "Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave. Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you, leave there and shake the dust off your feet in testimony against them." So they went off and preached repentance. The Twelve drove out many demons, and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.
In our Epistle reading (Ephesians 1:3-14), we hear from the opening of Paul's letter to the Ephesian community. It is both a blessing and a teaching. In this passage, Paul teaches us that we are chosen by God and redeemed by the blood of Christ. In Christ, we are destined with the purpose of the will of God. We are called to glorify God with our lives.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens, as he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and without blemish before him. In love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ, in accord with the favor of his will, for the praise of the glory of his grace that he granted us in the beloved. In him we have redemption by his blood, the forgiveness of transgressions, in accord with the riches of his grace that he lavished upon us. In all wisdom and insight, he has made known to us the mystery of his will in accord with his favor that he set forth in him as a plan for the fullness of times, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth.
In him we were also chosen, destined in accord with the purpose of the One who accomplishes all things according to the intention of his will, so that we might exist for the praise of his glory, we who first hoped in Christ. In him you also, who have heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him, were sealed with the promised holy Spirit, which is the first installment of our inheritance toward redemption as God's possession, to the praise of his glory.
As St. Paul tells us, we have been chosen before the foundation of the world. Chosen for what? To praise and glorify God with our lives, to preach God's truth by living and loving as God would have us do. And like the prophet Amos and the apostles, be prepared for what rejection will come our way. It is our destiny.
- Click HERE to read and reflect on the readings for, Sunday, July 15
“Let us ask our Lord to help us understand that love is
service, love means taking care of others.”
– Pope Francis
Please return donations for our summer care packages that will be distributed to families in need around our community by noon on Friday, July 20. Specific request cards are available in church or by sending an email to Elizabeth. Any food, cleaning, or personal care items are welcome. Thanks in advance for your generosity!
Tuesday, July 24 at 5:00pm
at St. Joseph’s House of Hospitality
(402 South Ave. in Rochester)
I will conduct a Communion Service for the guests and Catholic Workers at St. Joseph's House of Hospitality. Many of you may remember their presentation given during one of our Lenten Soup Suppers.
This is another great opportunity to get to know those among us whose lives are very different from ours yet, as children of God, are similar in so many ways. Getting to know one another is where it all begins! If you plan on attending, please also consider bringing along a donation item. The men could use the following items: clothing items in general, socks and underwear in particular.
Please feel free to call me at 233-0334 or email me at [email protected] with any questions.
Peace and love,
Register now for "Shipwrecked" VBS!
This summer's program is August 6-10 from 9 am - noon for students ages 4-10.
There is a $25 per student fee, with a family max of $60. All families will receive a music CD.
Click here to sign up students.
Click here to sign up volunteers, ages 11+ (entering 6th grade or above).
Next Saturday, July 28, at the 5 pm Mass, we will be using contemporary praise and worship music to bring us closer to the Lord through song. If you’d like to preview the music before Mass on YouTube, here is what we will be singing together:
Open the Eyes of my Heart – Paul Baloche
The Table – Chris Tomlin
Lord, I Need You – Matt Maher
O Come To The Altar – Elevation Worship
God Alone – The Nebblett Family
This Is Amazing Grace – Phil Wickham
We are looking for families or individuals who are willing to make a connection with newer parishioners here at St. Rita. We will match you with a new family or individual with similar family dynamics
This would involve making a welcoming phone call, inviting them to attend Mass, Breakfast Club or another activity, and making some introductions to other parishioners. This does not require a big time commitment and will hopefully be rewarding for all involved! Anyone who has been a parishioner for at least a year is encouraged to become involved in this ministry. Contact Karen at the Parish Office at 671-1100 x 11 or by email.
Prospective new families can either stop in the office for a packet or follow the link to Admissions---Registration for the packet.
If you have any questions about registration, please contact the School Office (585-671-3132).
Get ready for school!
Sale is August 10th in the hallway by the library. Donations can be accepted until August 3rd.
All items are $2.00
CYO soccer registration for the upcoming fall season has begun! Boys and Girls from St. Rita Parish in Grades 3-6 may sign up for this league, which will play in September and October. Please register and pay online here. The fees are: $60 for 3rd & 4th Grade players and $80 for 5th & 6th Grade players. There is a $140 family maximum. Deadline to register is Monday, August 13.
What is ChristLife? ChristLife™ has been conducted in many parishes throughout the Rochester diocese and is a proven method for rediscovering and sharing our faith with others. In the first series, Discovering Christ, people are helped to enter into or renew a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, experience the love of God the Father, and be empowered by the Holy Spirit to live as God's children. We invite you to experience Discovering Christ starting on Sunday September 23rd, at St. Rita Church. Considering inviting a friend or loved one who you think might benefit from this experience. There will be an opportunity to sign-up after the Masses on the weekend of September 8th & 9th, online here, or by calling Julie Cohn at the Parish Office (585) 671-1100 x 13.
If your youth is in 8th Grade or above and has received the Sacraments of Baptism, Eucharist and Reconciliation, he or she will be ready to start preparing to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. This is a two year program. It will start in mid-September. Please register online here by September 1. If you have any questions, please email Marie Marton or call 671-1100 x 17.