Bulletin (December 14, 2003)

Last month I was invited to bless the animals for the Living Nativity scene which was part of the Christmas Spectacular at the Paramount Theater. I didn’t get to see the actual production, but a number of parishioners told me it was excellent – even included dance numbers by the famous New York Rockettes. I took Samwise with me to the blessing of animals. He started barking when he saw the camels, sheep and donkeys, so he had to wait outside. After the blessing, the manager allowed him inside the animal tent. The above picture shows him in front of the camels. He has a sad expression – perhaps because he did not get to meet any of the Rockettes, but more likely because he was anxious to meet the other animal species. The camels bent down and Sam spent a long time sniffing them. Same with the sheep, although the donkeys stayed to themselves. You can see some pictures of the blessing at: /paramount.html

Speaking of Christmas, that celebration is getting close. This Sunday we light the third candle of the Advent wreath. It has the pink color, signifying rejoicing. For that reason we call this Gaudete (rejoice) Sunday. Next Sunday at our 11 a.m. Mass we will remember Sharon Carriere. A member of Holy Family Parish staff, Sharon died on June 22. Her husband Duane and other members of the Carriere family will be with us for this six-month Mass.

Thank you to those who gave names for the “Come Home for Christmas” letter. I will be sending it to a number of former parishioners this week. Please do your part to invite people back to Holy Family. Some are attending other parishes, some are experimenting with other churches and many have simply drifted away. Jesus says that because “tribulation” or “worldly anxieties,” certain people will fall away. Christmas is a good time to invite them back.

Christmas and New Years fall on Thursday this year. Because of that, there will be some changes in regular routine. Eucharistic adoration will be in the Ailbe House chapel on Christmas and New Years Eve (not in the church as is customary on Wednesdays). Also Confessions will be on New Years Eve from 8 to 10:30 p.m. (not on January 1 which is the First Thursday of the month). At 11 p.m. we will again have a bilingual New Years Eve Mass. We began this custom in 1999 and I have been most pleased by the good turnout. What a beautiful way to begin the New Year! Our Christmas schedule of Masses is: 5 p.m. Children’s Mass, 7 p.m. Spanish, 9 p.m. Filipino and English Midnight Mass, proceeded by a Service of Lessons and Carols at 11 p.m. On Christmas day we will have Masses in English at 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. On New Years Day there will be Mass in English at 11 a.m.

A couple of pre-Christmas ideas: Attend one or all of the Simbang Gabi Masses. The full schedule is in the bulletin. Consider giving to Sacred Heart Radio. Our local Catholic radio station (1050 AM) has inspired and encouraged so many people. You can send your contribution to Sacred Heart Radio, P.O. Box 2482, Kirkland, WA 98083. Your donation will help them continue their work of evangelization.

Please continue your prayers for soldiers who are serving overseas. Several parishioners have posted pictures of relatives or loved ones who are currently serving in Iraq or other foreign countries. My niece’s husband, Bob Lindenau, is part of the Stryker Brigade which has been in the news so much recently. As you can imagine, this is a time of great stress for my niece as she takes care of her four children, all the time worrying and praying for her husband. The soldiers and their families need our prayers. May they soon be able to safely return home.

Finally, thank you to all who participated in the Feasibility Study. We will be wrapping it up this week so, if you have not yet returned your questionnaire, please do so before Friday. In January and February, our Parish Council will use the results of the Feasibility Study to determine the next steps regarding our Master Plan and what type of capital campaign we should pursue.

El mes pasado me invitaron a bendecir los animales para un Nacimiento Vivo. Mi perrito Samwise me acompañó. Para él fue lindo conocer animales diferentes como camellos, burros y ovejas. Hay fotos a: /paramount.html

La celebración de Navidad ya está cerca. Este domingo prendimos la tercera vela de nuestra corona de Adviento. El color rosado significa “alegría.” El domingo se llama “Gaudete” que en latín quiere decir, “alégrate.”

Gracias a las personas que me dieron nombres para la carta “Regresar a Casa” para Navidad. Esta semana, la enviaré a personas que han dejado la parroquia quizás para ir otras iglesias o han dejado la practica de su fe. Como dice Jesús, muchos caen a causa de “tribulaciones” o “preocupaciones mundanas.” Navidad es un buen momento para invitarlos a regresar.

Navidad y Año Nuevo caen en el día jueves este año. A causa de eso, habrá cambios en la rutina. Adoración eucarística estará en la capilla de la Ailbe House (no en el templo como es costumbre en los días miércoles). Habrá confesiones el 31 de diciembre desde las 8 p.m. hasta las 10:30 p.m. (no el primero de enero que es primer jueves del mes). A las 11 p.m. habrá otra vez una misa bilingüe para el Año Nuevo. Las misas de Navidad en español será a las 7 p.m. en la Nochebuena y 12:30 p.m. el día de Navidad.

Favor de seguir rezando por los soldados en lugares de peligro. Unos feligreses han puesto fotos de parientes y seres queridos que están sirviendo en Irak u otros países. El esposo de mi sobrina, Bob Lindenau, es parte de la Brigada Stryker que ha sido en las noticias. Como se puede imaginar, es un tiempo de mucho estrés para mi sobrina mientras cuida a sus cuatro hijos, siempre preocupada y rezando por su esposo. Los soldados y sus familias necesitan nuestras oraciones. Que pronto regresen seguros a sus casas.

Gracias a todos que participaron en el Estudio de Probabilidad. Lo concluiremos esta semana. Si todavía no han regresado su cuestionario, favor hacerlo antes del día viernes. En enero y febrero, nuestro Consejo Parroquial los utilizará para ayudarme en determinar que pasos debemos tomar con relación a nuestro Plan Maestro y que tipo de campaña capital debemos proseguir.