Bulletin (May 9, 2004)

In today’s second reading, St. Paul tells us we must undergo many hardships in order to enter the Kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22) We know that this is true, but we often do not know why. The simple fact is that love by its nature requires sacrifice. A person who deeply loves someone is willing to undergo suffering on behalf of his beloved. We perhaps see love most clearly in our mothers. They often accept great suffering for their children: the discomforts of pregnancy, the pains of childbirth, the early years when the child depends totally on his mother and then the years of gradual separation. All of this involves suffering and represents the love which mothers have for their children. Today we honor our mothers, living and deceased. During the past nine days, we have offered a novena of Masses and rosaries for all the moms of our parish. May the Lord continue to bless them and give them strength.

Last Saturday, along with a number of families and individuals from the parish, I attended the Mayday for Marriage Rally. Its basic purpose was to reaffirm the definition of marriage which we see in the Bible and which all human cultures have attested: the life-long union of a man and woman. Not all agree with that definition today. At the entrance to the Safeco Stadium, we encountered about a hundred demonstrators. They held various signs which common message was, “Why do you hate us?” A demonstrator shouted at a young mother that she was teaching her children to hate. The small children clutched their mom and asked why the woman was so angry with them.

Beginning with Dr. James Dobson, almost every speaker said something to respond to that charge. A black pastor argued that “gay marriage” is not a civil rights issue. Another pastor stated that a struggle with same-sex attractions does not mean that one cannot get married. He recounted his own poignant history of, as a child, being called a “faggot” and, as an adult, immersing himself in the gay lifestyle. Thirteen years ago he came out of the lifestyle, subsequently married, and now has two children.

The demonstrators, who filled a small section of the stadium, did not seem interested in listening to any of the explanations. They chanted and rhythmically clapped in an attempt to distract and drown out the speakers. It seems to me, the demonstrators did not distinguish between disagreement and hatred. They are not the same thing. Although it is sometimes difficult, it is possible to disagree with someone without hating them. As a Catholic priest, by definition, I disagree with many people: Moslems, Jews, Hindus, Seventh Day Adventists, secular humanists and Evangelical Christians. That does not mean I hate the members of those groups. On the other hand, I know many people with same sex attractions with whom I agree profoundly on matters of faith. They are Catholic Christians striving to live Jesus’ teaching on chastity. But even those who disagree with that teaching, I do not hate. My hope is that at some point we would be able to discuss why, even though that teaching is extremely difficult for almost every human being, it is nevertheless true and beautiful.

Holy Family School faculty and students have selected two saints for names of rooms in the Ailbe House. One of them is Mother Gamelin. Here is some information about her: Émilie Tavernier was the youngest of fifteen children, orphaned at an early age and raised by her aunts. In 1823 she married Jean-Baptiste Gamelin, a wealthy apple farmer. They had three sons, all of whom died as children. After only four years of marriage, her husband died. Emile took Mary, Mother of Sorrows, as her guide for dealing with these losses, and during her time in prayer, she came to see all the poor and needy as her new family. She turned her home and inheritance into a shelter for the poor, for the orphaned, for abandoned or runaway children, the mentally ill, the homeless, the handicapped, immigrants, and destitute of any form. People began to refer to her home as the House of Providence, and she was soon after to establish other residences for the outcast. Eventually she founded a religious order, the Sisters of Providence. Mother Gamelin died of cholera on September 23, 1851 at Montreal, Canada. In 1993 Pope John Paul II decreed that Emilie had lived her virtues to a heroic degree and officially recognized a medical miracle through her intervention, the cure of a fatally ill thirteen-year-old. She was beatified on October 7, 2001. Blessed Mother Gamelin, pray for us.

On April 29, Fr. Ramon gathered the newly confirmed to discuss what the sacrament meant to them. He asked them what most impressed them about the ceremony. A number mentioned the way in which Archbishop Brunett imposed hands on them. Others said the solemnities of the ceremony (choir, Knights of Columbus, etc.) made them feel special – and several mentioned that they very much liked the homily, including the fact that the Archbishop spoke in both Spanish and English. Following, courtesy of Dan Parfait and Todd Aylard, are some pictures from the April 28 Confirmation Mass:

These and other pictures can be found at: /confirmation2004.html

Special thank you to all who supported the Archbishop by making their commitment to the Annual Catholic Appeal. If you have not yet turned in your envelope, please do so this week.

Finally, reserve June 12 and July 12 for adult education opportunities: Mark Shea on Making Senses of the Scripture and Monsignor James Kelly on The DaVinci Code.

San Pablo nos dice que hay que pasar por muchas tribulaciones para entrar en el Reino de Dios. (Hechos 14:22) Amor necesariamente requiere sufrimiento. Todos lo sabemos. Lo vemos especialmente mientras celebramos el Día de la Madre. Casi toda persona está segura del amor de su mamá. ¿Por qué? Ella ha sufrido por su hijo. En el embarazo, el parto, luego en todo lo que significa cuidar a un niño pequeño. En estos días entre Pascua y la Ascensión, escuchamos a Jesús decir que solamente estará con nosotros un poco más. Y nos da un nuevo mandamiento: Que se amen los unos a otros, como yo los he amado. (Jn 13:34) Honramos a nuestras madres quienes, por su sufrimiento, nos han mostrado el amor. Durante los últimos días hemos rezado una novena de misas y rosarios por nuestras madres, vivas y difuntas. ¡Que todas las mamás de nuestra comunidad tengan una Feliz Día de la Madre!

Las siguientes son fotos de la Misa de Confirmación del 28 de abril: Estas y otras fotos de la Confirmación se puede encontrar a: /confirmation2004.html

Un agradecimiento especial a todos que han apoyado al Arzobispo por medio de la Petición Anual Católica. Si Ud. todavía no ha devuelto su sobre, favor de hacerlo esta semana.