“May these mysteries, O Lord, in which we have participated, profit us, we pray, for even now, as we walk amid passing things, you teach us by them to love the things of heaven and hold fast to what endures. Through Christ our Lord.” The prayer after communion for the first Sunday of Advent is worth contemplating further throughout the Advent season.Groups: I’ve heard of many people who use Advent as a time to gather in small groups. It’s a great way to grow closer in relationship with Jesus, but also to grow in friendship with others. There are many great resources that are available for Advent small groups. I know Ascension Press has many different books to choose from.
Today is “Giving Tuesday” and the final day to take advantage of a special opportunity to support our parishes, schools, and other entities in our diocese by participating in #iGiveCatholic. Visit https://salina.igivecatholic.org/ to show your support. Thank you in advance for your kindness and generosity!
Please partake in the Family Advent Challenge. Each week will offer two short videos with activities you can do together. It is a great way to bring your family together to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas!
We celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary on December 8, a Holy Day of Obligation. Please thank God for Our Blessed Mother in a special way that day by attending Mass. I am looking forward to celebrating Masses at the parishes in Hanover, Greenleaf, and Washington that day.
As many of you know, Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to St. Juan Diego on Tepeyac Hill in Mexico City in December of the year 1531. Her appearance led to the conversion of huge numbers of the native Mexican people. Our Hispanic brothers and sisters celebrate this feast with much gusto! They have been practicing for months to celebrate this day with their drums, dance, and maracas. If you would like to attend the celebration at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Salina the schedule is as follows:Saturday, December 106 PM – Parade7:15 PM – MassSunday, December 115 AM – Songs and Prayer, Reenactment6 AM – Breakfast and Traditional Dances 12:30 PM – Mass2 PM – Dinner and Traditional Dances4 PM – Traditional Dances
We thank God for all the religious who have served in the Diocese of Salina. We can help support all retired religious in the nation by giving to the national collection for the Retirement Fund for Religious in your parishes the weekend of December 10-11.
I recently read an inspiring article on the message Pope Francis shared during his meeting with the International Theological Commission last week. He made a wonderful distinction between the role of the Catechist and the Theologian. Basically, he states that when you teach (as a catechist or teacher) you should only teach what the Church teaches as solid doctrine. “A theologian, he said, has a vocation to go beyond existing doctrine, because “he is trying to make theology more explicit.” I encourage you to read the entire article HERE
Thank you again to all who participated in the Synod process in our diocese as well as the ongoing listening sessions. Many of you have expressed concerns about what is happening in the German Synodal Way. You can read more about the Vatican’s most recent response HERE.
I am currently attending a conference/retreat for Catholic Athletes for Christ (mostly in attendance are major league baseball players). Former Royals player Mike Sweeney has been my host and his story of faith is quite remarkable. Mike’s story of forgiveness will be in the next issue of faith magazine which is on the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
I will be visiting our seminarians at St. John Vianney Seminary in Denver later this week. I am looking forward to being with them and going to their Advent Concert on Friday evening. You can also visit with them during the month of December by attending the Runnin’ Revs basketball game at Sacred Heart High School in Salina at 6 PM on December 17. I hope to see many of you there!
I have had the opportunity to visit Ukrainian families now living in both Hays and Concordia. During this Advent and Christmas, we pray especially for peace in the Ukraine and the refugees who have been displaced and are longing for home.
I am looking forward to visiting the prison in Ellsworth on December 20 to celebrate Mass and share a meal with those who are incarcerated there. More and more of them are seeking to be confirmed and joining the Church.
I wish you all a very blessed Advent and Christmas Season as we welcome Jesus into our Hearts and our Homes.
“Open wide your door to the one who comes. Open your soul, throw open the depths of your heart to see the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace, the sweetness of grace. Open your heart and run to meet the Sun of eternal light that illuminates all men.” – St. Ambrose of Milan
“At this Christmas when Christ comes, will He find a warm heart? Mark the season of Advent by loving and serving the others with God’s own love and concern.” – St. Teresa of Calcutta
“No one is excluded from the joy brought by the Lord. The great joy announced by the angels on Christmas night is truly for all people, both for the people of Israel then anxiously awaiting a Savior, and for the numberless people made up of all those who, in time to come, would receive its message and strive to live by it.” – St. Paul VI