Bulletin (January 20, 2008)

This Tuesday is the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal in all nine months of pregnancy. It was a drastic ruling. The judges thought that on their own they could resolve the divisive issue of abortion, make it go away. That did not happen – obviously. Even the woman who was “Jane Roe” in the Roe v. Wade case has changed her mind. In 1998 Norma McCorvey gave this testimony to Congress:

“It was my pseudonym, Jane Roe, which had been used to create the "right" to abortion out of legal thin air. But Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffee never told me that what I was signing would allow women to come up to me 15, 20 years later and say, "Thank you for allowing me to have my five or six abortions. Without you, it wouldn't have been possible." Sarah never mentioned women using abortions as a form of birth control. We talked about truly desperate and needy women, not women already wearing maternity clothes.”

In that same year, Norma McCorvey became a member of the Catholic Church. Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, received her into the Church on August 17, 1998. She is a frequent speaker at pro-life events.

If you are concerned about the direction our country is going, I encourage you to attend the March for Life this Tuesday in Olympia. It is by far the largest annual gathering at our State Capitol. The day begins with a Mass at 10 a.m. celebrated by Bishop Eusebio Elizondo. At noon we will join the others gathered on the Capitol steps. Our parish Knights of Columbus have provided a bus so that Holy Family seventh and eighth graders can attend this event.

As a preparation for the March for Life, I met with those students to discuss why we value human life. We examined some verses from the Bible that speak about the worth of human life and then tried to think of things we could do to affirm the value of each life. The students came up with a lot of ideas. Based on that discussion, here is the top-ten list of things a young person can do to affirm the value of human life:

10. Open a door for someone, e.g. a person in a wheelchair.
  9. Eat right foods, exercise.  (Respect yourself.)
  8. Visit a cemetery & pray for people who have passed away.
  7. Help a neighbor with her baby.
  6. Be nice to someone not having a good day.
  5. Help your parents.
  4. Call 911 (if you hear a person in distress).
  3. Pray for someone in trouble.
  2. Help siblings with their homework.
  1. Include everyone.

There is evidence that the pro-life mentality is gaining strength in our society. The Guttmacher Institute recently reported that where in the 1980s 1 in 3 pregnant women chose abortion, the figure has now come down to 1 in 5. That is still a huge number, and each abortion is a tragedy not only for the child whose life is extinguished, but also for the mother, who often feels the terrible loss for all her life.

This year’s March for Life has a special poignancy. Kathy McEntee, who organized the event since the seventies, passed away last week. Our Tuesday evening John XXIII Mass will be offered for her eternal rest.

Besides the March for Life, this is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The two go very well together. The united voices of Christians is more important than ever in the face of a society that is increasingly hostile to basic Christian – and human – values. This year is the hundredth anniversary of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. In 1908 at Graymoor in Garrison, New York, the Franciscan Friars and Sisters of the Atonement held the first Church Unity Octave and have prayed for Christian unity, "without ceasing," ever since. Today, Christians around the world celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, together with the encouragement of the World Council of Churches' Faith and Order Commission and the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. This week was chosen because January 18 (in the former calendar) was the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter and January 25 is the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul.

I also ask your prayers for our Parish Council. Its work is vital for setting the mission and goals of our parish for the coming years. At our January meeting, we approved the minutes of the previous meeting. They are available on the vestibule bulletin board.

This week we should be sending out letters with Stewardship Reports for 2007. I know that many of you use this report in the preparation of your Income Tax. We make every effort to make these reports 100% accurate, but if you notice any discrepancy, do not hesitate to call our Parish Office. You can give the information to me, to Parish Administrator Gary Samaniego or directly to our Stewardship Coordinator, Mary French.

Finally, I want to call your attention to Principal Glen Lutz’ column. Please take note of the activities for the upcoming Catholic Schools’ Week.

Este martes es el aniversario 35 de Roe v. Wade, la decision de la corte suprema que legalizó el aborto en los nueve meses del embarazo. Alumnos de nuestra escuela (septimo y octavo grado) participarán en la anual marcha pro-vida en olympia. Es una actividad educacional y espiritual. El obispo Elizondo Eusebio celebrará una misa a las 10 a.m. en la Iglesia de San Miguel, Olympia.

El aborto es una tragedia no solamente para los bebitos que pierdan sus vidas, sino para las mamás que a veces sufren mucho despues de un aborto procurado. Hay un grupo llamado “No Mas Silencio” que habla de la pena de un aborto. Además de mamás de niños abortados, hay papás que también expresan su remordimiento a la perdida de un hijo que no ha podido proteger. Para estas personas va a haber un retiro de sanacion a fines de marzo. El proximo domingo habrá una presentacion sobre este retiro de Viñedo de Raquel.

El 10 de febrero vamos tener una presentacion sobre el Metódo Billings de Planficación Natural de la Familia, dada por la Dra. Gina Landicho-Wicks, M.D. Se llevará a cabo a la 1:45 p.m. (después de la misa de 12:30) en el Salon Tice. El costo es solamente $25 por pareja (o $15 por jovenes solteros). El costo incluye los materiales para hacer una grafica personal y dos clases de seguimiento en abril y junio. Si quieres mas información favor de hablar con el Padre Felipe, el Diacono Abel o con Monica Orozco, secretaria de la parroquia de Holy Family, 206-767-6220.

School News Church Bulletin: January 20, 2008

Dear Parishioners,

Tomorrow, Monday, January 21 is Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Observed Birthday. This past week, the Student Council prepared a prayer service for the school that emphasized Dr. King’s message of respect, acceptance and Christ-like love for all persons. I believe our children at Holy Family Parish School make a sincere and daily effort to live out this message. What a joy it is to see our children build community and God’s Kingdom as they do!

Beginning Sunday, January 27, Catholic schools around the nation will be celebrating Catholic Schools Week. This year’ theme is Catholic Schools Light The Way. Holy Family Parish School is truly blessed by the parish. You are outstanding Stewards. Your support of the school is essential and greatly appreciated. I hope that you will note the following opportunities in planning to celebrate with us during this special week.

For example, on Friday, February 1st we will be celebrating the Grandparents. The school will join the parish for Mass @ 8:30. A reception for the grandparents and the parishioners will follow in the Tice Hall. (It is also First Friday.)

You will also be receiving information about the School Annual Fund Drive. A special brochure describing the importance of this Stewardship opportunity will be sent to all school families and all parishioners. I ask you to prayerfully consider making a monetary gift to the school. Please also join us in the School Hall (the gym) on Saturday, February 2nd between 9:30 and 11:00 for a pancake breakfast.

And, on Sunday, February 3rd, there will be an OPEN HOUSE from 9:00 – 1:00. All of the teaches and staff will be available to meet and greet. You will see our school families at either the 9:30 Spanish Mass or the 11:00 English Mass. I encourage dropping over to the school and visiting. Thank you!

God Bless, Glen t. Lutz Principal

Parish Council Meeting Minutes November 8, 2007, 7:00 p.m., Miguel Pro Room, Ailbe House

Present Staff: Father Bloom, Father Velasco, Deacon Magana, Gary Samaniego, Anca Wilson, Mary French Council Members: Emy Bansale, Joella Eoff, Ginnie Hance, Rica Herrera, Teresa Lambert, Denise Leary, Angelica Ramirez, Victor Ramirez, Alex Sheng, Stephanie Sheng, Steve Stillwell Jr., Steve Stillwell Sr. (also present: Greg Miller, Lector coordinator and member of Liturgy Commission)

Staff and council members met at 6:45 p.m. in the Adoration Chapel for fifteen minutes of silent prayer before the meeting.

Meeting was opened at 7:00 p.m. with the Gospel reading for the day read by Greg Miller and opening prayer by Father Bloom.

Pastor’s Vision Father Bloom presented his vision for the new Parish Council as well as a brief review of the major work of the past two Councils that have been convened during his pastorate at Holy Family.

Father stated that the main role of the Parish Council was that of being the fundamental consultative body in the parish to assist him in discerning and determining the goals and objectives of the parish. He explained that by “discernment” he meant trying to understand God’s will for the parish through prayer and discussion within the Council.

One of the main focuses for the first Parish Council under Father Bloom was the writing of a Parish Mission Statement that emphasized the parish’s task of bringing Christ’s love through sacraments, teaching and Christian service. The Council also addressed the diverse ethnic communities existing within Holy Family. The focus of the second Parish Council was mainly the involvement with the initial listening sessions leading up to the Capital Campaign as well as continuing financial consultation as the Campaign progressed. Father explained that the current Parish Council has three main issues that are to be its focus: Discernment of the role of Stewardship within our parish, Catholic identity, and Hispanic ministry. Concerning Stewardship, Father mentioned that the Archdiocese has asked each parish to have a “Year of Discernment” in which a review of the current Stewardship practices is to be made determining areas of needed improvement or development.

Regarding Catholic identity, the Archdiocese has expressed concern over recent statistics pointing out that Catholics who marry non-Catholics are increasingly not being married in the Church and leaving the practice of their faith. Hence, the Archbishop has asked all parishes to evaluate how they are inculcating a Catholic identity within their parish. In the area of Hispanic Ministry, the Parish Council will be reviewing and discussing the recently published Archdiocesan Pastoral Plan for Hispanic Ministry entitled, “From Guests to Hosts.” Since the Archdiocese has asked all parishes to report back to them concerning Stewardship issues by June of 2008, the Council will focus its first efforts on this area.

General Discussion Each Council member expressed how they saw their involvement in the Council. Members mentioned their appreciation for the Archdiocesan training on Saturday at St. Louise. Also, many members indicated interest in the issue of Catholic identity.

Stewardship Year of Discernment A presentation was made by Mary French reviewing the Archdiocesan Stewardship Plan and some possible over-all goals for the Council to focus on. It was hoped that a Stewardship Mission Statement as well as some general policies and procedures regarding stewardship within the parish would be developed with an eye to a possible formation of a Stewardship Commission sometime in the future.

Parish Council Executive Committee Father Bloom asked Steve Stillwell Sr., Rica Herrera and Angelica Ramirez to serve on an Executive Committee which would assist him in determining the goals and agenda of each Council meeting.

Action Item It was asked that each Council member read the United States Bishops’ letter on Stewardship entitled, “Stewardship: A Disciples Response” by the next meeting.

Future Parish Council Meetings Jan. 10, Feb. 14, March 13, April 10, May 15

Father Bloom adjourned the meeting with the Stewardship Prayer at 8:40 p.m.

First Collection Stewardship for Week 29 of Fiscal Year
(July 1, 2007 – January 6, 2008)
Budgeted Year to Date:			$356,381.00
Collected Year to Date:			$340,917.45
Income Difference Year to Date	       (-) $  15,463.55  

Amount Needed Each Sunday:		$  12,289.00
Last Sunday’s Offering:			$  11,258.78
Weekly Income Difference           (-)  $    1,030.22

Some of the Gifts from the Other Half of our Stewardship
2-bit Collection (Deanery Prison Ministry):	$   1,301.61
Saint Vincent de Paul:				$        75.00

Capital Campaign
Total Households Pledging:			677
Total Pledged:					$1,188,724.63
Total Paid:					$   970,708.99
Balance:					$   218,015.64

Delinquency Amount to Date:		$   135,698.24