April 1, 2022
Lent: The Lenten season has only a couple of weeks left. There are so many things in our life that we can’t control—war, gas prices, and so on. But the one thing we can control is our relationship with the Lord. It’s never too late to begin anew or spend more time in prayer, fasting and giving alms.
Still time: I read an article recently that outlines well the Plenary Indulgences that can be gained during the season of Lent. There is still time in Lent. Read the article HERE to learn about these indulgences.
Holy Week: The holiest week of the year is Holy Week, beginning with Palm (or Passion) Sunday through the Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Vigil). Attending the Holy Week services will be the best decision we make. We are all called to be disciples of Jesus and the first part of being a disciple is being with Him.
Consecration: Thank you to all the priests and all of you who participated in the Consecration of Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary last Friday, March 25. I trust that our Blessed Mother will bring about peace.
Chrism: Please attend if you are able the Chrism Mass on Thursday, April 7, at 11:30 am in the Cathedral. All are welcome! During the Chrism Mass, I will bless the three sacred oils: the oil of catechumens; the oil of the infirm and the holy chrism. These oils are used in the administration of the sacraments throughout the diocese for the year.
RCIA: It brought me a lot of joy to meet so many people will be joining the Catholic Church at Easter during the Rite of Election a few weeks ago. I am so grateful for the people who lead and teach their RCIA courses. I wish I could be with every one of the candidates and catechumens and congratulate them individually at the Easter Vigil at their parishes. Thanks for your “yes.”
Faith: Our next issue of faith magazine will be focused on Baptism and the call to live out our baptism in our daily life. I hope you enjoy it.
Our Baptismal Call: Speaking of our baptism, I enjoyed reading an article on Venerable Armida Barelli, an Italian woman who will be beatified in April. She was a lay leader who formed generations of Catholic women to be civically engaged through “a Eucharistic spirituality” and to help women see their equal “baptismal dignity” with men.
JPII: Although his feast day is October 22, tomorrow, April 2, is the day that Saint John Paul II died in 2005. We ask for his intercessory prayers for our diocese.
CYO: This weekend is our Catholic Youth Organization convention at Sacred Heart High School in Salina. I look forward to being with our young people.
Annual Appeal: This weekend is the participation weekend for the Bishop’s Annual Appeal. I am grateful to so many of you who have already given to the Appeal and thank you in advance to those who will give.
Holy Land Collection: Thank you for giving as well to the Holy Land collection on Good Friday. The money collected is used to help the Christians and their families who have suffered greatly in the Holy Land.
Synod: I am also grateful to all of you who participated in the Synod by attending the listening sessions. From all accounts, there was some very interesting conversations.
Value Them Both: We are now 123 days away from the August 2 primary election and the vote on the Value Them Both Amendment. Thank you to all of you who are supporting this endeavor.
Congratulations: Our schools had a very successful visit from the Accreditation Review Team last week. The team interviewed principals, teachers, parents, students and business partners over two days. This accreditation cycle has spanned the last five years and many thanks go to our school leaders for helping to improve the schools. Once the review team present to the State of Kansas, and everything is finished, the Catholic Schools of the Salina Diocese will be the first Catholic Schools in the state accredited as a diocese instead of individually. Thank you to Dr. Nick Compagnone and Geoff Andrews with leading our schools in this process.
Our Brothers: Next week, I will be celebrating Mass at the Correctional Facility in Ellsworth. I always enjoy being with the men there. Some of them have had profound conversions to the Lord. Perhaps one could say that they are more free than those who are not there and do not know Jesus and are bound to sin.
Dodge: People have asked me what I am going to do with my extra time now that I am no longer the administrator of the Diocese of Dodge City. Ha, ha.
Roma: Many years ago, I was selected to be a Missionary of Mercy. There is a conference in Rome for Missionaries of Mercy April 23 – 25 at the Vatican. I wasn’t planning on attending. However, I got a little inheritance money after my mom passed away, so I decided to go and spend it on my trip there. The diocese will be in my prayers.
Surprise: Fr. Fred Gatschet at the Cathedral received a package without a note or return address. Inside was a sacramental register from St. Paul Parish in Delphos. The register contained the list of people for Baptisms (1884-1890); Marriages (1885-1899); Deaths (1885-1896); Confirmations (1884-1899); and First Communion (1886-1897). It reminded me of when I lived in Rome and a friend of mine and his family came to visit me and then went to Sicily to find out where his grandparents were baptized. He was very happy to go to the Church with the same baptismal font that his grandparents were baptized more than 100 years ago. The register will be placed in our archives.
Happy Easter: If I don’t see you, Happy Easter to you and your families. May our Risen Lord fill your hearts with peace and joy!
Divine Mercy: Please attend the Divine Mercy services somewhere in the Diocese on Divine Mercy Sunday, April 24. The Lord never tires of being merciful. Please don’t be afraid to seek his mercy.
Family: My brother, Dan, and my niece, Emily, have been visiting me this past week. It has been great to be with them, praying and sharing meals together.
Blessings to all you. With my love and prayers.
Inspiration from the Saints:
“All I want to know is Christ and the power flowing from His Resurrection!”
~ St. Francis of Assisi