From the Pastor – October 1, 2022

The Apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” (Lk 17:5) By the time the Apostles have gotten to the 17th Chapter of Luke’s Gospel, they’ve seen Jesus do a lot of things.  They’ve seen a miraculous catch of fish.  They’ve seen Jesus expel demons.  They’ve seen Him heal a mother-in-law, a leper, a paralytic, a man with a withered hand, a servant, a woman with a hemorrhage, a crippled woman and a man with dropsy.  They’ve seen Jesus calm a storm, feed 5000 people and raise two children from the dead.  At this point, they realize that Jesus has some pretty serious authority.  And out of all the things they can ask for, they ask him for one thing: “increase our faith.” What is it about “faith” that is so important to the Apostles?  There are two ways that we understand faith in the … [Read more...]

Religious Education

We offer C.C.D. (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine) classes for grades 1 – 3.  Classes meet on Sunday mornings 9:20-10:20, beginning September 18, and follow the academic calendar.  Please register with the parish office or Phillip Bellini at pbellini@archdiocese-no.org. What We Believe:  The Beauty of the Catholic Church Adult education classes begin Wednesday, September 14 at 6:30pm.  The Catholic Church is extraordinary. Founded by Christ himself, the Catholic Church is where we encounter God in his Word, his sacraments, and his saints. The Church faithfully proclaims the fullness of faith, leaving no truth out. It proclaims the fullness of life, leaving no person out. It calls all to repent and to believe in God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the source of all life … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – September 25, 2022

He said, “Then I beg you, father, send him to my father's house, for I have five brothers, so that he may warn them, lest they too come to this place of torment.” But Abraham replied, “They have Moses and the prophets.  Let them listen to them.” He said, “Oh no, father Abraham, but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.” Then Abraham said, “If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.” (Lk 16:27-31) What is faith?  How do we get it, and where does it come from?  St. Thomas classically defined faith as: “the act of the intellect assenting to a Divine truth owing to the movement of the will, which is itself moved by the grace of God.” But sometimes things are made easier by … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – August 28, 2022

For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.   (Lk 14:11). What is humility?  The word origin comes from the Latin word “humus,” which means “dirt.”  It can have negative connotations as being “lowly” or “abased,” but Catholics tend to see humility as a virtue.  And the reason for that?  It’s because Our Savior, Jesus Christ, is the epitome, the essence of humility.  He came from the highest station possible:  He is the Lord, the Creator of the Universe, the Word made Flesh, the Alpha and the Omega.  And from the highest station, He chose the lowliest station on Earth.  He was born in a stable.  He grew up in one of the smallest backwaters of the Middle East.  He became an “itinerant” preacher and had nowhere to lay his head.  He … [Read more...]

The Basilica of St. Stephen!

While somewhat familiar to Catholics, the term Basilica originally referred to a style of building in use during the time of the Roman Empire.  Now it is a designation given by the Holy See to churches around the world. There are two types of basilicas – Major Basilicas and Minor Basilicas. There are four Major Basilicas in the Church, and they are all in Rome.  They are St. John Lateran, the Basilica of Saint Peter, Saint Mary Major, and Saint Paul-Outside-the-Walls.  Some argue that the Basilica of Saint Francis in Assisi and the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem are also designated Major Basilicas. Minor Basilicas are those churches throughout the world that have been given a special designation by the Holy Father.  Many reasons exist for bestowing this title on a … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – August 21, 2022

Someone asked him, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?” He answered them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough.”  (Lk 13:23-24). What does it mean to be “saved”?  We use the word all of the time.  We might save money by buying something on sale.  We might save electricity by turning down the thermostat.  We might save for a vacation or save our breath when in an argument against someone stubborn.  We might want to save the whales, save the rain forest, save the lake or save the cemeteries, to quote some international or local causes. So what does that “someone” in the verse above mean when he asks Jesus whether “only a few will be saved.”  The Greek word being used is from the root “Swttr” or “Soter,” … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – August 7, 2022

Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour when the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come. (Lk 12:39-40). There are two ways by which we will see God face-to-face: upon our death or at the time of the Second Coming.  And the truth is that we really don’t know when either of those events might occur! Several years ago, I was the celebrant at two funeral Masses in a few days that marked a real contrast.  The first funeral was of a young, 18-year-old boy in the beginning of a promising life.  And the second was of a 93-year-old great-grandfather.  Although it’s certain that only God knows the state of their souls at their death, we prayed at both funeral … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – July 31, 2022

“There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, ‘Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!’” But God said to him, “You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?” Thus will it be for all who store up treasure for themselves but are not rich in what matters to God. (Lk 12:18b-21). A few years ago I spoke to a Catholic group in Baton Rouge. Although my talk was about the Apostolicity of the Church (being founded on the Apostles and the current bishops being their successors), at the end a man asked me a question about clerical celibacy.  “Father, why do priests have to be celibate” was the simple question.  Unfortunately, celibacy is … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – July 24, 2022

“And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Lk 11:9-10) per·se·ver·ance?[pur-suh-veer-uhns] –noun 1.steady persistence in a course of action, a pur-pose, a state,etc., esp. in spite of diffic-ulties, obstacles, or discouragement. 2.Theology . continuance in a state of grace  to the end,leading to eternal salvation. Anything that’s worth doing requires perseverance.  The Latin verb “perseverare” is  composed of two words: “per” meaning “through”; and “severare” meaning “to be severe or strict.”  So perseverance means to achieve something through being strict.  And the obvious object of the … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – June 19, 2022

Brothers and sisters, I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.” (1 Cor. 11:23-26) In terms of a feast in the Catholic Church, today’s Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ (“Corpus Christi” in Latin) is a fairly recent one.  We all know that the Body and Blood of Christ are present at each Mass, but the addition of this special feast to … [Read more...]