From the Pastor – July 14, 2024

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. (Eph. 1:11-12)

The readings for this Sunday are about the idea of “mission.” The word “mission” comes from the Latin verb “mittere,” which means “to send out.” The obvious “sending out” in this week’s Gospel is Jesus sending out the Apostles. In fact, the word “apostle” literally means “those sent out” in Greek. The Apostles are sent out on a “mission.” And the idea of “mission” is part of the continuing work of the Church. Every year we have a “mission appeal” in the parish, where we hear about the mission of the church in different countries. However, the idea of “mission” is a lot more that just collections. It’s about spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ, or evangelization.

The work of evangelization is ongoing. There are people living in the world, and even perhaps in our own city of New Orleans, who have never heard the Gospel message in its fullness. But we can’t be content to think that this “mission” business is simply the work of professional missionaries or Vatican congregations. Each of us plays a role.

In the quote above from St. Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians, we hear that “we were also chosen.” By our own baptism, we were incorporated into the mission. And we participate in it in large and small ways. Clearly, donating to the mission appeals is aiding the mission of Christ. But there are other ways that we participate. Parents serve an important role in the mission by educating their children in the practice of the faith. Catechists do the same through CCD and RCIA. Teachers have a mission to teach. Our parish work, through the St. Vincent de Paul Society and our ministry to the poor, supports the mission. But, individually we also participate in the mission by the small and large encounters where we have the ability to share our faith and help others to learn about Christ. We should never miss an opportunity. At the end of the Mass in Latin, the final charge is “Ite, Missa est.” It means “go out; it is the mission.” Just like the Apostles, we’ve come to Jesus in Holy Communion, and then we go out – having been sent – to live and proclaim the mission of evangelization.

(Very Rev. Msgr.) Christopher H. Nalty

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Happy Father’s Day

God our Father, We give you thanks and praise for fathers young and old.

We pray for young fathers, newly embracing their vocation; May they find courage and perseverance to balance work, family and faith in joy and sacrifice.

We pray for our own Fathers around the world whose children are lost or suffering; May they know that the God of compassion walks with them in their sorrow.

We pray for men who are not fathers but still mentor and guide us with fatherly love and advice.

We remember fathers, grandfather, and great grandfathers who are no longer with us but who live forever in our memory and nourish us with their love. Amen

Ministry to the Poor at the Rebuild Center

Many of you know that our parish, largely through our St. Anthony Poor Box, feeds the poor at the Rebuild Center on almost every Thursday of the month. The meals are cooked at Our Lady of Good Counsel rectory, and then volunteers serve the food at the Rebuild Center. The list below shows how many people we have fed a nutritious meal since the beginning of this year, nearly 3000! Thanks for all you do to feed the poor through your donations to the St. Anthony Poor Box! If you would like to assist directly in cooking and feeding the poor, please call the parish office, or email Eddie Connick at

Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Friday, June 7, 2024

Margaret Alacoque was born in Burgundy, France on 22 July, 1647. From her early childhood Margaret showed intense love for the Blessed Sacrament, and preferred silence and prayer to childish amusements. During her time before the Blessed Sacrament, Christ even made Himself visually apparent to her. This did not surprise her, because she thought others had the same Divine assistance! Although tempted by the luxuries and distractions of the world, Margaret Mary entered the Visitation Convent in 1572, where her visions became known. Because of her perceived “special status,” she was subjected to many trials to prove her vocation. She showed obedience, humility, and invariable charity towards those who persecuted her.

Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish a Holy Hour during which she lay prostrate with her face to the ground from eleven until midnight on the eve of the first Friday of each month, to share in the mortal sadness Christ endured when he was abandoned by His Apostles in His Agony. She also made sure to receive Holy Communion on the first Friday of every month.
In the first great revelation, Jesus made known to her His ardent desire to be loved by men and His design of manifesting His Sacred Heart with all of its treasures of love and mercy, of sanctification and salvation. He appointed the Friday after the octave of the feast of Corpus Christi as the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus; He also called her His “Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart.” The love of the Sacred Heart was the fire that consumed her, and devotion to the Sacred Heart is the refrain of all her writings.

The discussion of the mission and virtues of Margaret Mary continued for years. All her actions, her revelations, her spiritual maxims, her teachings regarding the devotion to the Sacred Heart, of which she was the chief exponent as well as the apostle, were subjected to the most severe and minute examination. After a thorough examination, Pope Pius IX declared her Blessed in 1864. In 1856, the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus was inaugurated. In 1920 Margaret Mary was canonized by Pope Benedict XV.

Corpus Christi Mass and Eucharistic Procession

Sunday, June 2, 2023

All are invited to participate in a Eucharistic Procession immediately following the 10:30am Mass on June 2.  The procession will exit the Church, turn right on Napoleon Avenue and then go around the school and the church before returning into the church for Benediction. It will be led by a crucifer, and we will chant Eucharistic hymns as we bring carry Jesus in the Holy Eucharist throughout our neighborhood!

Upcoming Ordinations

Priest Ordination
On Saturday, June 1, 2024 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Louis Cathedral, Archbishop Aymond will ordain Deacons Austin Barr, Jorge Gomez, and Cuong Tran to the presbyterate for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. You are cordially invited to attend the ceremony. Priests and deacons are asked to bring their vestments.

Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel – July 16

Our Lady of Mount Carmel is the title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary in her role as patroness of the Carmelite Order. The first Carmelites were Christian hermits living on Mount Carmel in the Holy Land during the late 12th and early to mid-13th century. They built in the midst of their hermitages a chapel which they dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, whom they conceived of in chivalric terms as the “Lady of the place.” Our Lady of Mount Carmel was adopted in the 19th century as the patron saint of Chile, in South America.

Since the 15th century, popular devotion to Our Lady of Mount Carmel has centered on the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, also known as the Brown Scapular, a sacramental associated with promises of Mary’s special aid for the salvation of the devoted wearer. Traditionally, Mary is said to have given the Scapular to an early Carmelite named Saint Simon Stock. The liturgical feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel is celebrated on 16 July.

The solemn liturgical feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel was probably first celebrated in England in the later part of the 14th century. Its object was thanksgiving to Mary, the patroness of the Carmelite Order, for the benefits she had accorded to it through its difficult early years. The institution of the feast may have come in the wake of the vindication of their title “Brothers of the Blessed Virgin Mary” at Cambridge, England in 1374. The date chosen was 17 July; on the European mainland this date conflicted with the feast of St. Alexis, requiring a shift to 16 July, which remains the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel throughout the Catholic Church. The Latin poem “Flos Carmeli” (meaning “Flower of Carmel”) first appears as the sequence for this Mass.

Signing with Courage

Signing with Courage – Charles Carroll of Carrollton

The legal separation of the American colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia. After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a committee with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4. A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail:

The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.

Adams’ prediction was correct, but he was two days off! From the beginning, Americans celebrated independence on July 4, the date shown on the much-publicized Declaration of Independence, rather than on July 2, the date the resolution of independence was approved in a closed session of Congress. And the Declaration itself wasn’t signed until August 2, 1776.

Divorced People Are Not “Outside” the Church

[What follows is a clarification from the Holy Father. Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI, that you might consider handing along to any of your Catholic friends who are divorced and remarried]

We sometimes hear from our friends who are divorced and remarried:  “I’m excommunicated.”  That’s not true at all.  During the World Meeting of Families held in 2012 in Milan, a Brazilian family raised the issue of divorced couples who have remarried and cannot avail themselves of the Sacraments. Pope Benedict XVI affirmed that “this is one of the great causes of suffering for the Church today, and we do not have simple solutions. Naturally, one very important factor is prevention. This means ensuring that, from the beginning, the act of falling in love is transformed in a more profound and mature decision. Another factor is that of accompanying people during marriage, to ensure that families are never alone but find authentic company on their journey. We must tell people in this situation that the Church loves them, but they must see and feel this love.” Parishes and other Catholic communities “must do everything possible so that such people feel loved and accepted, that they are not “outsiders” even if they cannot receive absolution and the Eucharist. They must see that they too live fully within the Church. The Eucharist is real and shared if people truly enter into communion with the Body of Christ. Even without the “corporeal” assumption of the Sacrament, we can be spiritually united to Christ.” It is important for divorced couples “to have the chance to live a life of faith, to see that their suffering is a gift for the Church, because they also help others to defend the stability of love, of Marriage; theirs is a suffering in the community of the Church for the great values of our faith.”

As a canon lawyer, I do a great deal of ministry with divorced and remarried Catholics, especially in helping guide their cases through the Metropolitan Tribunal.  If you need my help, call me.  That’s what I’m here for!

Religious Liberty is the Foundation of the United States of America

Below is an example of how the Founding Fathers understood the issue of “religious liberty” in our country from the beginning. It is a letter written by then-president Thomas Jefferson in response to a letter from the sisters of the Ursuline Convent, New Orleans, Louisiana, after the French colony of Louisiana was transferred to the jurisdiction of the United States of America via the Louisiana Purchase. The sisters were concerned about how the United States would regard their religious freedom.

* * * *

Washington May 15, 1804

To the Soeur Terese de St. Xavier Farjon, Superior, and the Nuns of the Order of St. Ursula at New Orleans.

I have received, holy sisters, the letter you have written me wherein you express anxiety for the property vested in your institution by the former governments of Louisiana. The principles of the constitution and government of the United States are a sure guarantee to you that it will be preserved to you sacred and inviolate, and that your institution will be permitted to govern itself according to its own voluntary rules without interference from the civil authority. Whatever diversity of shade may appear in the religious opinions of our fellow citizens, the charitable objects of your institution cannot be indifferent to any; and it’s furtherance of the wholesome purposes of society, by training up it’s younger members in the way they should go, cannot fail to ensure it the patronage of the government it is under. Be assured it will meet all the protection which my office can give it.

I salute you, holy sisters, with friendship and respect,

Thomas Jefferson
President of the United States of America

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