R.I.P. Sr. Mary Joseph, O.C.D.

Last weekend I received word that Sr. Mary Joseph, a member of the Carmelite Monastery of Des Plaines, IL., had passed away at the age of 92.  Sr. Mary Joseph was an unlikely member of her Carmelite community.  Born Ann Russell, she grew up as a wealthy San Francisco socialite whose father was the chairman of Southern Pacific Railroad.  She married Richard Miller atContinue reading “R.I.P. Sr. Mary Joseph, O.C.D.”

The Sacred Heart

In October 1986, Pope John Paul II made a pilgrimage to a place called Paray-le-Monial, a town in eastern France.   Paray-le-Monial is called the “City of the Sacred Heart” because it was the home of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a 17th century religious sister whose visions of Christ led to widespread devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. During an audience, Pope John Paul II saidContinue reading “The Sacred Heart”

Memento Mori

 A couple of weeks ago, the New York Times featured a story by journalist Ruth Graham about a young religious sister who spends her days encouraging people to remember not just the dead, but to remember death itself.  Sr. Teresa Aletheia, a member of the Daughters of St. Paul, has developed a huge online following by encouraging people to cultivate the daily habit of reflecting on their mortality. Memento mori, in Latin, was a practice of ancient pagan philosophers but has also been part of Christian lifeContinue reading “Memento Mori”

Confirmed in the Spirit

This Wednesday (5/26), Bishop Caggiano will be coming to confirm 23 young men and women of our parish. It’s a lovely thing to have Confirmations so soon after celebrating Pentecost, the great feast on which the Church commemorates the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the world 50 days after Easter.  As part of the liturgy of Pentecost, the Church gives usContinue reading “Confirmed in the Spirit”

Together in Person

Last week, the bishops of the three Connecticut dioceses jointly released a statement announcing the reinstatement of the obligation of the faithful to attend Sunday Mass.  This obligation to attend Sunday Mass (or Saturday Vigil Mass) in person has its roots in the Apostolic age, when the members of the Church gathered every Sunday to celebrate together the paschalContinue reading “Together in Person”

Receiving the Body of Christ

Last weekend we celebrated First Holy Communions for 44 young members of our parish. First Communions are always one of the best days of the year. As the priest celebrant, I had the special privilege of seeing them approach the sanctuary with deep reverence, and receive the Most Blessed Sacrament with obvious faith. It wasContinue reading “Receiving the Body of Christ”

Hearing the Call of the Shepherd

In this Sunday’s gospel, Our Lord refers to Himself as the Good Shepherd, thus inviting us to consider the mystery of vocation.  The Second Vatican Council reminds us that there is a universal vocation to holiness, which means that every single person is called to be a saint.  For the sake of helping people respond to the universal vocation, we believe the Lord gives aContinue reading “Hearing the Call of the Shepherd”