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Announcements ~ April 1, 2018

 Happy Easter!

 
fleur cross logo The liturgy sheet for Mass today begins on page 7 of this bulletin.  Please take a bulletin per family, and leave the rest in the vestibule for people to use at later Masses on Easter.
 
There is only one more week to purchase tickets to our Biennial Saint Bernadette School Auction. Please join us April 14 for a wonderful evening with a beautifully catered dinner, live and silent auctions. Tickets are $75 per person or a table of 10 for $650. Alumni tables welcome! You can find an online version of our auction catalogue on our parish and school websites. Our goal is to raise $100,000 to provide excellence in Technology and the Arts. Please visit stbernschool.org to purchase tickets.
 
fleur cross logo Our Second Collection this Easter weekend is a Special Collection for Parish Building Fund. Thank you for your generosity.
 
fleur cross logo Parish offices are closed on Easter Monday, but some evening activities will still be held.  Please check with your ministry leaders to confirm schedules.
 
fleur cross logo Divine Mercy Devotions will be scheduled for 3pm on the Second Sunday of Easter, April 8.
 
fleur cross logo ECHO’s Yard Sale will be held in the Saint Bernadette gym on Saturday, April 7 from 8am-12pm. Proceeds from the sale will be used to help meet ECHO’s financial requirements.
 
fleur cross logo Saint Bernadette will again host a Called and Gifted Workshop on Saturday, September 15, 2018. Mark your calendars and invite your friends. For more information see page 17. Registration opens May 7, 2018.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ April 1, 2018 ~ Easter Sunday, The Resurrection of the Lord

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
On the cover is an odd photo I took when I was in the Holy Land last January.  I know, photos may not be really appropriate in holy places, and I probably should not have taken this one (let alone publish it on our bulletin cover).  But the moment was so compelling, almost overwhelming, as it has been every time I have been here.
 
For me, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is the holiest place in the world.  In one sense, I suppose, you could say the whole world and everything in it and everyone in it is holy, because the incarnate Son of God was here.  Though he ascended, he didn’t leave; his presence still fills everything as his Spirit is poured out upon the earth.
 
But in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre you visit both Calvary and the Empty Tomb of Jesus.  The church is built around/upon these holy places.  You can crouch beneath the altar built upon the stone of Golgotha and reverence the very spot where Jesus’ Cross was erected, inserted into the Rock.  It is the Rock - you can see it - where Jesus’ blood ran, the rock that has been revered by believers without interruption since the day of his crucifixion.  It is real.
 
Centered beneath what is now a great rotunda, is an ancient chapel built, literally, on the ground which was leveled around the Tomb of Jesus.  The floor of the Tomb is the level of the floor of the church, and you can enter this tiny, holy place only three people at a time.  There is a small antechamber with a pedestal holding a piece of the original stone that was rolled before the entrance to the Tomb; the entrance itself you must bow to enter, a doorway decorated in the Byzantine period when St. Helen built shrines at all the holy places, and later by the Crusaders when the original structures needed to be repaired and enlarged for the pilgrims who have continuously traveled here.  It is real.
 
You enter this tiny space with two other people, and kneel on the floor.  Directly in front of you is a slab of marble upon which the Body of Jesus was placed after being taken down from the Cross and held by his Mother, Mary.  You get this feeling often in the Holy Land that these are the sights, the rocks, even these ancient trees, the places that Jesus himself saw.  Even some of the flagstones of the original Way of the Cross through the Old City of Jerusalem have been excavated and raised to the modern street level so you can know that Jesus carried his Cross here.  The slab in the Tomb is cracked; it was broken intentionally by believers when Jerusalem was being conquered, so that it would not be scavenged as a building material for a new building.
 
You kneel in the Tomb only for a moment, the line is long outside and there is an Orthodox priest telling people to keep moving.  But it is just long enough for the fact to sink in:  This is the place where they laid him.  Jesus’ Body was here, and it is here that the greatest miracle of all took place in the silence of the eternity of God which we could not bear to see, at least not now.  It is the place where the eternal Son of God, without beginning or end, is conquering death with life.
 
In that moment I held my phone one inch above the broken slab of Jesus’ Tomb and took a photo up in the air.  This is the best Easter photo of all:  it is the view up from the slab into the space where the risen Jesus arose.  He is our life, our self, our now and our future.
 
The photo includes some Crusader period marble carving, some flowers, an icon of the risen Christ (to help our imaginations, I presume), and some Byzantine-style oil lamps, dozens of them in the air above the tomb.  But for me it is a photo of eternity in a moment of time.
 
He is here, always before me.  He has gone to the depths of our human experience before us - to the darkest depths as well as the most beautiful fullnesses of what it means to be human.  He has touched our humanity with divine Life in such a way that we are a new creation.  And now he has freed us from the pointlessness of death, to reveal a beginning.  “I died, and now I live.”
 
We wish you profound peace and light in the midst of so much confusion and darkness.  I pray that Easter joy can overwhelm you and bring you to deep knowledge and love for God, and unwavering confidence in his love for you.
 
God bless you.

 

 

Announcements ~ March 25, 2018

fleur cross logo It’s time for the Parish to support our Biennial Saint Bernadette School Auction. Please join us April 14 for a wonderful evening with a beautifully catered dinner, live and silent auctions. Tickets are $75 per person or a table of 10 for $650. Alumni tables welcome! We will begin highlighting auction items next weekend. Our goal is to raise $100,000 to provide excellence in Technology and the Arts. Auction committee members will be selling tickets this weekend or you may visit stbernschool.org to purchase tickets online and for more information about opportunities to underwrite, sponsor or advertise in our auction program.
 
fleur cross logo Please find the Sacred Triduum schedule for Holy Week on page 7 of today’s bulletin. During this period of three holy days, we ask that regular parish activities be suspended and everyone try to come as much as possible to our liturgies.
 
fleur cross logo Saint Bernadette School would like to invite the Parish community to join the teachers and students in attending the Living Stations of the Cross on Thursday, March 29, at 11am. The Living Stations is being performed by a select group of 7th and 8th graders and would love to have you make this special presenation part of your Holy Week observation.
 
fleur cross logo Please remember, Fridays in Lent are days of abstaining from eating meat, and Good Friday will be a day of abstinence and fasting (one regular meal, two snacks if necessary) according to ancient Church Tradition.
 
fleur cross logo Remember someone you love, either living or deceased, with a donation for our beautiful Easter Flowers. Envelopes are available in your envelope packets, in the Church and in the Parish Office.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ March 25, 2018, Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
He is our Passover.  The words hang in the air as we pray the first Eucharistic Prayer for Reconciliation.  “Indeed, though we once were lost and could not approach you, you loved us with the greatest love: for your Son, who alone is just, handed himself over to death, and did not disdain to be nailed for our sake to the wood of the Cross.  But before his arms were outstretched between heaven and earth to become the lasting sign of your covenant, he desired to celebrate the Passover with his disciples...”
 
He is Lord of the Passover, God who became Man for this moment when he could become the fulfillment of Creation’s deliverance.  He becomes the Lamb of the Passover meal, prescribed so carefully by God in the meal of the flight from Egypt, now in the form of unleavened bread, because the people of Israel have no time to wait for the yeast to rise... we must flee from our captivity and come to know the freedom of the daughters and sons of God who is life.  Now, take haste.  To God, whose love is greater than any sin.  God, who is love, must redeem his beloved.
 
“Therefore, as we celebrate the memorial of your Son Jesus Christ, who is our Passover and our surest peace, we celebrate his Death and Resurrection from the dead, and looking forward to his blessed Coming, we offer you, who are our faithful and merciful God, this sacrificial Victim who reconciles to you the human race.”  And from the second prayer, “Accept us also, together with your Son, and in this saving banquet graciously endow us with his very Spirit, who takes away everything that estranges us from one another.”
 
Come, gather this Thursday, as we re-present this event of our salvation, the institution of Eucharist and Priesthood when Jesus literally came into his own and fulfilled the plan formed by God from the beginning of the world.  The Meal and the Cross form a unity such that they cannot be separated either from themselves or from the dawn of new life in resurrection.  For this reason the three days of the Sacred Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil) cannot be separated, they form one continuous liturgy which begins with the Last Supper and ends with the Empty Tomb.  The tomb makes no sense without the ultimate sacrifice; likewise, the sacrifice This is my Body, this is my Blood makes no sense without a victory, his passing over the darkness and silence of our death.  You will notice we only begin once with the customary sign of the Cross, only once do we end with the final blessing after the Vigil Mass: they form a continuous whole, one liturgy of the saving Mystery of Jesus. 
 
There is something rare about what happens on Good Friday.  We observe the three hours of Jesus’ suffering and death on the Cross, and people became accustomed to the Stations of the Cross in the few centuries before Vatican II before the restoration of the ancient Triduum in 1969, but these are really private meditations and devotions.  Neither of these actually belong to the particular ancient Tradition of the Church for this day.  We intentionally gather in the darkness of Good Friday evening to recognize the emptiness of the church where, for one day, Jesus is not present among us.  We recognize the impact of this event:  no sacraments may be celebrated because the Lord of Life has died.  We listen to Saint John’s account of his Passion.  We venerate the wood of the Cross, the instrument of our salvation.  We receive Communion, leftover from Holy Thursday which is brought into our space from outside.
 
The Apostles took up the commemoration of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, because his Death and Resurrection are at the heart of our salvation, our Passover. At least by the second century, Christians celebrated the Great Easter Vigil, an event which began the night of Holy Saturday, continuing until dawn on Easter morning. During this vigil, Christians commemorated salvation history, awaited the return of Jesus, and celebrated the Resurrection of Jesus at dawn on Easter Sunday. It was at the Vigil that catechumens, after a three-year period of catechesis, were baptized and received first Communion. The Easter Vigil is the most important day of the liturgical year.  Imagine if our Vigil were to start at sundown and end at sunrise, as in the early Church!  As it is, it lasts several hours, as we only include seven readings and psalm responses from Scripture, instead of listening to the Word of God all night until the new light of dawn.  At that moment of Resurrection we sing, again, the Glory to God and the light of Christ, blessed and venerated, floods our hearts and minds with the new life of Christ himself.
 
Easter Sunday Masses are the celebration of our new life in Baptism as we gather for the sole purpose to proclaim the joy of our new life, as we renew our promises and are sprinkled in the waters of the Easter font of rebirth.  A day of ultimate Joy, we gather for no other reason than to celebrate and give thanks.  Join us for these amazing days, and rediscover who you are and why we are here.  Be here!
 
God bless you.
 

Parish Penance Service ~ March 20, 7pm

Please plan to join us for our Parish Penance Service this evening, Tuesday, March 20 at 7pm. We will have at least a dozen priests (English and Spanish) who will be here for you.

The service will be held regardless of weather conditions.

Religious Education, School and Ministry Activities are cancelled this evening.

Announcements ~ March 18, 2018

fleur cross logo It’s time for the Parish to support our Biennial Saint Bernadette School Auction. Please join us April 14 for a wonderful evening with a beautifully catered dinner, live and silent auctions. Tickets are $75 per person or a table of 10 for $650. Alumni tables welcome! We will begin highlighting auction items next weekend. Our goal is to raise $100,000 to provide excellence in Technology and the Arts. Auction committee members will be selling tickets this weekend or you may visit stbernschool.org to purchase tickets online and for more information about opportunities to underwrite, sponsor or advertise in our auction program.
 
fleur cross logo Please join us for our final Lenten Soup Suppers and Stations of the Cross this Friday. Soup supper begins at 6:30pm in the school cafeteria, English Stations in the Church at 7:30pm and Spanish Stations in the Chapel at 7pm. Bring the whole family to enjoy good soup and fellowship and then spend time walking the way of the Cross with Jesus.
 
fleur cross logo Our Parish Penance Service will be this Tuesday, March 20 at 7pm, a time that we will have at least a dozen priests (English and Spanish) who will be here for you. Please plan to come.
 
fleur cross logo Please find the Sacred Triduum schedule for Holy Week on page 7 of today’s bulletin.  During this period of three holy days, we ask that regular parish activities be suspended and everyone try to come as much as possible to our liturgies.
 
fleur cross logo The Bishop’s Lenten Appeal is in full swing and we are asking every household in our parish to support this appeal to the extent you are able. We are at 89%: Thank you for your  wonderful  support of our diocesan mission.
 

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ March 18, 2018

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Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
It’s the season when all the second grade lambs come out and celebrate the sacrament of Confession for the first time, preparing for First Communion.  As each child completed their First Confession, they placed a lamb with their name on it on the steps at the altar.  They will serve as a reminder for us to pray for them all the way up until Holy Thursday night, when the church is stripped in preparation for Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection in the Sacred Triduum.  Also, don’t forget to remember all of our eighth graders in prayer as they are in proximate preparation for receiving the Holy Spirit in the Sacrament of Confirmation on April 26.
 
Here is a special request, if you can help me.  Bishop Burbidge is scheduling dinners at his residence at the Cathedral for pastors and the three men each pastor is to bring who might be interested in a vocation to Priesthood.  Dinner guests must be 18 years or older to attend the dinner on Friday, April 13.  If you think you might be interested, we won’t make a big deal out of it, just join me for a nice dinner.  If you know someone who might need just a little encouragement, well, encourage them!  Ask them to give me a call and we can make plans.  I have asked the young men that I thought might have been interested, but I guess I’m off my game.  Let me say this:  it seems really countercultural today to be a priest, something that maybe takes a level of commitment that is more than many people think they are capable of.  But everyone you ask agrees that the culture needs to change, that the only solution to solving the systemic problems in our world is going to be counter-cultural.  The culture is at fault for putting us where we are today.  Commitment is real, but down deep in the heart of every thinking, loving human being is a desire to truly commit to something that can become the heart of your life.  Priesthood is that.  I have often laughed and said Priesthood is clearly a calling—you’d be crazy to choose it.  But once you answer the call, you discover there is no other, fuller, more powerful, joyful way to live this God-given life.  Consider it and call me, please.
 
This Good Friday (March 30) we are going to introduce a new tradition to Saint Bernadette, though it has been a Tradition of the Church for centuries.  The period of time between Noon and 3pm, the time that Jesus was in agony on the Cross, are powerful hours of prayer.  These three hours, or Tre Ore in Italian, become opportunities for the community to come together for prayer, sacred music (sung and instrumental), Sacred Scripture as we listen to the seven last words of Jesus on the Cross and meditations which help us reflect more deeply on the great gift that is Jesus’ self-emptying love.
 
Still, the most important liturgies of the Sacred Triduum (three days) is the Mass of the Lord’s Supper (7:30pm Holy Thursday), The Passion and Veneration of the Cross (7:30pm Good Friday - 4:30pm in Spanish), and the Easter Vigil (8:30pm on Holy Saturday), and if you come to anything, come to these.  But additional items such as the Liturgy of the Hours, the Tre Ore, adoration in the gym until midnight on Holy Thursday (as we go with Jesus to pray in the Garden of Gethsemane before he is arrested) and, once more, the Stations of the Cross are intended to enhance the continual worship of the Triduum as we enter into the mystery of suffering, death and resurrection with Jesus.  Let us go together, literally, to Jerusalem and see the love of Jesus for us, and in him, become his love for the world.
 
I had intended to include plans of the new preschool addition in the bulletin this week, but we ran out of space!  Construction began last week with the abatement of some floor tiles containing asbestos.  Now that that is out of the way, it is full speed ahead.  Thank you for your continued support and generosity for our school as our dreams become reality.

God bless you.
 

Announcements ~ March 11, 2018

fleur cross logo It’s time for the Parish to support our Biennial Saint Bernadette School Auction. Please join us April 14 for a wonderful evening with a beautifully catered dinner, live and silent auctions. Tickets are $75 per person or a table of 10 for $650. Alumni tables welcome! We will begin highlighting auction items next weekend. Our goal is to raise $100,000 to provide excellence in Technology and the Arts. Auction committee members will be selling tickets this weekend or you may visit stbernschool.org to purchase tickets online and for more information about opportunities to underwrite, sponsor or advertise in our auction program.
 
fleur cross logo Please join us for our Lenten Soup Suppers and Stations of the Cross each Friday during Lent. Soup supper begins at 6:30pm in the school cafeteria, English Stations in the Church at 7:30pm and Spanish Stations in the Chapel at 7pm. Bring the whole family to enjoy good soup and fellowship and then spend time walking the way of the Cross with Jesus.
 
fleur cross logo Our Parish Penance Service will be March 20 at 7pm, a time that we will have at least a dozen priests (English and Spanish) who will be here for you. Please plan to come.
 
fleur cross logo The Bishop’s Lenten Appeal is in full swing and we are asking every household in our parish to support this appeal to the extent you are able. The BLA funds many programs, services and ministries that serve people in need. Don’t forget every new donor or gift over last year’s gift will be matched by a challenge gift. We are 71%: Thank you for your wonderful  support of our diocesan mission.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ March 11, 2018

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
In the excerpts we could include from Pope Francis’ Lent Message for 2018, there is a line that has stuck in my mind all week:  “What I possess is never mine alone.”
 
How far such this is from our experiences of voices in our world!  The meditation deepens:  our lives do not belong to us;  our bodies do not belong to us; our world does not belong to us.  Dialogue with the world on these topics does not end well.  Yet you and I both know well that all belongs to God.  Even our free will belongs to God, we still have a free choice about what to do with all these things, even though they still all belong to God.  Precisely because all of these things belong to God and we are merely stewards of these gifts (merely! as if it weren’t the most highly exalted honor given to us), we are liable to judgement for what we do with them.  For how we use our bodies, our minds, our wealth, our environment.  God cares.  If he did not, none of this would make any difference.
 
Yet, in a wondrous way, since we belong to God, in his community of love we also belong to each other.  Sin is real, and is real damage to the relationships which make us human persons.  Therefore, we have obligations for one another:  “Love one another as I have loved you...”  We must care.  To not care is somehow to forfeit your humanity.
 
The organism that God has set as steward over all his creation is called “human.”  You and I are surely members of that organism, but not as individuals.  There is a great difference between “member” and “individual.”  Individualism is impossible for humans, as it would be impossible for a branch to stay alive if it were to be somehow separated from the vine.
 
Our human experience of this organic creation of God is called community.  Community and individualism are opposites, as are good and evil.  They can’t be mutually present without violence, oppression and war.  Community requires members that give, not take, who live not for their own survival, but the survival of each other, even laying down one’s life, if necessary, for the other.  “There is no greater love.”  If all of this sounds really Christian to you, then you are on the right track.  Unfortunately, the world is not listening.

Our lives—every moment of our lives—are filled with opportunities to do something meaningful as humans to build community with all the things we have even though they don’t belong to us.  Simple kindness, or grand acts of grace and generosity, or willingness to make sacrifices for the sake of others—these are ways we grow more fully human and, in the Body of Christ, in divine grace as well.  Slowly we can heal the wounds of our world.
 
The greatest hope of this, I believe, is in the right formation and education of new generations of the faithful, to extend what we know to be true to those who need to learn.  The formation of our children and youth is the most important work of the people of God who have discovered their giftedness and the corresponding responsibility that comes from the gifts.  As adults, many of us have not discovered or realized this yet—and we are working on that.  In the meantime, however, you and I need to make our priority the education of our children and youth through the parish mission of Saint Bernadette Catholic School and Religious Education. 
 
We have an opportunity coming up next month with our School Auction, when we can provide for our children the things that are needed, gifts that are intended for all to share.  We are trying something new this year for the Auction, ending the separation of a “school” and a “parish” community (just another expression of individualism) and making this one work of love for our young members.  This is no longer an event closed to school families:  we call upon the members of the one Saint Bernadette Community of parishioners to respond. 
 
This weekend I am going to beg at all of the Masses:  if there is no other charity to which you will contribute this year, please buy a $75 ticket for the future of our children, come enjoy a nice dinner, a wonderful evening of community, and even have a chance to bid on some of the more than 200 really good items which will be offered in the silent and live auctions.  Make this a priority:  it is for the children, as is all that we do at the School.  Parish and school:  come together as one, stewards of the resources that God gave us for a purpose.  Let us discover a new reality of the loving concern for one another that will fulfill us as members of God’s creation.  Let’s sell out 350 tickets.

God bless you.

Announcements ~ March 4, 2018

fleur cross logo It’s time for the Parish to support our Biennial Saint Bernadette School Auction. Please join us April 14 for a wonderful evening with a beautifully catered dinner, live and silent auctions. Tickets are $ 75 per person or a table of 10 for $ 650. Alumni tables welcome! We will begin highlighting auction items next weekend. Our goal is to raise $100,000 to provide excellence in Technology and the Arts. Auction committee members will be selling tickets the weekend of March 10 and 11 or you may visit www.stbernschool.org to purchase tickets online and for more information about opportunities to underwrite, sponsor or advertise in our auction program

fleur cross logo We invite prospective families to visit our next Open House, Thursday, March 8, 6-7pm. If you have any questions, or would like to schedule a tour of our wonderful school, please contact our Registrar, Mrs. Cynthia Johns at cjohns@stbernschool.org

fleur cross logo Please join us for our Lenten Soup Suppers and Stations of the Cross each Friday during Lent. Soup supper begins at 6:30pm in the school cafeteria, English Stations in the Church at 7:30pm and Spanish Stations in the Chapel at 7pm. Bring the whole family to enjoy good soup and fellowship and then spend time walking the way of the Cross with Jesus.

fleur cross logo The Bishop’s Lenten Appeal is in full swing and we are asking every household in our parish to support this appeal to the extent you are able. The BLA funds many programs, services and ministries that serve people in need. Don’t forget every new donor or gift over last year’s gift will be matched by a challenge gift.  We are 71%: Thank you for your wonderful support of our diocesan mission.

Inclement  Weather Announcement for Saturday / Sunday 12 and 13 January 2019
 
 Parish Office is closed today,
Sunday January 13
 
St. Lucy Project 
 Our support of the St. Lucy Project will go on as planned this weekend, 
however for those who may not want to brave the weather,
the collection will continue in the same way next weekend.
 
All other Parish Ministry and School activities are cancelled.
 
  
 
 
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Our Saint Bernadette 2018-'19 Ministry Catalog 

 


2018 2019 Catalog