In the Gospel this weekend (Mark 5: 21-43) we see Jesus tackle two things that cause us fear and anxiety: sickness and death. Jairus approaches Jesus asking him to heal his dying daughter. Along the way, a woman who had been sick for twelve years and tried every remedy, but only got worse, says to herself, “if I but touch his clothes, I can be healed.” Many people touched Jesus as he was walking, but this woman was different. When she touched him, Jesus felt power come out of him because of her faith. That is a great lesson for us—come to Jesus with faith. When we come to Jesus with faith, power comes out of him. In the meantime, Jairus’ daughter dies. Jesus raises her to life, just as someone is awoken from a nap. This is what happens when we die. Jesus awakens us to new life.
In our diocese, we have seven Churches named after St. Joseph. The year of St. Joseph ends on December 8, 2021, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. I am inviting the people of the diocese to make a pilgrimage to any number of the seven Churches named after St. Joseph. With it comes a plenary indulgence. More information will be posted on the Diocesan Website News & Updates section on Monday, June 28.
This Sunday, June 27, is the feast of the patron saint of our diocese, Our Lady of Perpetual Help. We are grateful for all the love and tenderness that Our Lady has for our diocese. I encourage everyone in the diocese to join in praying this simple novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help on Sunday. May we continue to go to her with all our concerns and worries.
We are blessed in our diocese to have a thriving and ever-expanding Catholic Charities, which has grown to serve more and more people every year. On July 17, they will be having their annual fundraiser at the Salina Country Club. To purchase tickets or give your support to Catholic Charities if you are unable to attend, please visit https://ccnks.org/greentie. Thank you for all your generosity and support of Catholic Charities and our diocese.
On the fourth Sunday of July, the Sunday closest to the feast of St. Joachim and Anne, which is celebrated on July 26, the Holy Father has decided to establish throughout the Church the celebration of World Day of Grandparents and the Elderly. This is a new annual celebration in the Church. You are invited to visit your parents/grandparents on this day as well as others who are elderly. Please read the Pope’s message for this special day and learn how you can obtain a plenary indulgence for celebrating.
I have been fortunate to visit Prayer and Action and Totus Tuus groups a couple of times this summer. From all accounts, these days are going well. I even heard one young person tell me after a week of Prayer and Action that it was the best week of his life. One parent who volunteered said that the week was fantastic and had a profound impact on her son. We are so blessed to have these wonderful opportunities for evangelization in our diocese, and I am super thankful for all the volunteers and staff who make it happen.
I was blessed to preside at the diaconate ordination of John Stang for the Diocese of Dodge City a few weeks ago. John is originally from Great Bend. Before he entered the seminary, he worked for a small newspaper in Virginia. God works in mysterious ways
Speaking of seminarians, we are having our Annual Seminarian Dinner on August 12 in Salina, followed by a Running Revs game on August 13 in Hays. Hope to see you there. Thank you for your support of our seminarians. Please continue to pray for more vocations to the priesthood!
On Saturday, August 14, we are having our 10th Annual Diocesan Men’s Conference at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Hays. One of our speakers will talk about St. Maximilian Kolbe on his feast day. St. Maximilian is a remarkable saint who gave up his life so that another man could live. There is “no greater love than to lay down one’s life for another.” Hope to see you there.
Perhaps the most interesting topic that generated the most discussion at our recent USCCB meeting was giving the approval to the Bishop’s Doctrine Committee to draft a pastoral letter on the Eucharist. The committee will draft this document before our November meetings and then, if all goes well, we will vote on its approval.
Receiving our Lord in the Eucharist should hopefully lead us to charity. When people are up for canonization, the #1 thing they look for is the person’s charity: how did they help others? At our USCCB meeting, we unanimously approved to advance two causes of canonization, for Father Joseph Verbis Lafleur, a World War II military chaplain, and for Brother Marinus (Leonard) LaRue, OSB a merchant mariner who became a Benedictine monk. Both men heroically helped others.
A friend of mine shared with me the following words that I found very helpful. “Every minute, every day, our life is a privilege. Cherish it, be thankful to God and give it importance. Do not forget that we don’t always get what we want but, we could at least be thankful for what we have so far. It is called grace! Happiness comes when we stop complaining about the troubles we have and offer thanks to our Creator for all the troubles we don’t have! A simple way to be grateful is to close your eyes for a minute and think of those who never got a chance to open them. Accept the past and give thanks for the lessons and experiences it gave. Welcome the future with happiness and be ready for new challenges coming ahead. Be thankful in your daily trials, because to get your breakthrough, you need trials and tribulations to breakthrough. Always remember to thank God for what he has given you that you didn’t ask for, it is called a blessing.”
Our communications office received national recognition for our new Diocesan Website from the Catholic Media Association. If you have not done so already, please visit our website at www.salinadiocese.org.
Please know that I am praying for all our farmers and for a bountiful harvest throughout the diocese as they combine their wheat.
Please pray for our priests as several of them will begin new assignments beginning July 1. Thanks for your love and support of our clergy.
I am going on vacation for a few weeks starting on June 28. My plan is to do a lot of fishing, as well as preside at my nephew’s wedding in Ohio and preside at another nephew’s daughter’s baptism. I do a monthly ZOOM meeting with my family and call my mom on a regular basis, but I am looking forward to seeing them in person. I hope all of you enjoy these beautiful summer days.
Be assured of my love and prayers,
Inspiration from the Saints
“Patience smooths away lots of difficulties.” St. John Bosco
“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.” St. Francis DeSales
“We should take as a maxim never to be surprised at current difficulties, no more than at a passing breeze, because with a little patience we shall see them disappear. Time changes everything.” St. Vincent DePaul
“The secret to happiness is to live moment by moment and to thank God for what he is sending us every day in his goodness.” St. Gianna Molla