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Streaming Masses and Announcements for the week of 19 September 2021

RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED
Please see the COVID Response and Guide on the left for NEW COVID Protocols issued by the Bishop are effective Friday, 28 May 2021


STREAMING SUNDAY AND WEEKDAY MASSES

Today's Live-Streamed Mass 
Worship Aid for the 25th Sunday of Ordinary Time


fleur cross logo Join us for Taizé Prayer, Monday, September 20, at 8pm. Come pray for Christian unity in our community and in the world. All Christians are warmly invited; invite your friends!

fleur cross logo Inviting all high school teens 9-12th grade to our Youth Ministry Kick-Off, next weekend, 26 September in the back parking lot behid the school. Join us for a cookout, games and fellowship. Parents are invited to stay for a brief talk discussion on how to make the program more effective and engaging for our young people. The kickoff follows the 5pm Sunday Mass - please join us.

fleur cross logo Please plan to join Christ Church and other area houses of worship to purchase, pack and distribute 165k life-changing meals. In the midst of much change, we want to continue be a shining light for the world’s most vulnerable. See today’s bulletin or speak to a representative after all Masses this weekend for more information or signup here.

fleur cross logo The second collection next weekend is for those impacted in the devestating earthquake in Haiti. Thank you for your generosity.

fleur cross logo The Confirmation Retreat for those to be confirmed in November will take place virtually on Saturday morning, October 9.

fleur cross logo Sunday, October 3 is Respect Life Sunday. Join over 1,500 communities across North America as we participate in the 34th annual Life Chain, praying and quietly standing for the lives lost to abortion. LIFE CHAIN - a public witness to the sanctity of human life!  We will form a chain along Franconia Road from 2:30-3:30pm. Our parish is assigned to gather in front of Key Middle School. Signs will be provided. 

fleur cross logo Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we recommend that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 19 September 2021

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

By now it has probably become obvious that we don't have the traffic control we formerly enjoyed at the entrance to our parish.  In the past we paid overtime to off-duty police officers to help everyone safely on and off the property.  Weekend Masses and, particularly, morning and afternoon school carpool have become a challenge.

At present, Fairfax County is down about 140 police officers and the police force is already called upon to work a lot of overtime.  We submit our requests each month, and hope that officers will sign up, but lately this hasn't been happening.  There doesn't seem to be a solution right now, but we are still looking into it.

Fairfax County does not allow non-officers to be deputized for traffic control and, as quickly as traffic goes past on the Old Keene Mill Speedway, I would not put anyone in such an unsafe situation.  We have gone to the county a couple of times asking about the possibility of paying for a traffic light, but we have been told we are too close to the intersection at Daventry to add another light, and it would have to be approved by VDOT, who will not approve it.

For the time being, we can only ask everyone to be especially careful, particularly when leaving the parking lot and turning left onto the Speedway.  Several times I have had a very close call when, watching cars coming from both directions, suddenly an eastbound car turns left into the property.  Please, be careful.  Turn right when leaving as much as you can.

Speaking about being careful, I wanted to thank everyone for continuing to be careful for each other. In many ways it seems that some people have relaxed their guard, but the more I am around families with children who do not yet have the benefit of a vaccine, I am reminded that the situation is just as real as it ever was, maybe even more now as the virus evolves.  On behalf of those parents who are concerned, I want to offer a continued message of encouragement to exercise caution.  Whatever we can do to keep the children safe we must do, and care for each other.

We have this sign in the staff break room which in the beginning I thought was a little preachy.  It is a nice way to say "clean up after your mess," a message you usually see in break rooms in offices everywhere.  But this one quotes Mother Teresa.  It says something like 'don't wash the plate because it is dirty, or because you are supposed to.  Wash the plate because you love the person who will use it next.'  It came to mean something a little different to me during this time of pandemic.  I hope we have learned simple ways to be more conscious of each other, ways which we can be helpful and supportive, basic ways of caring for others in our lives which help them and also make us better people.  Simple tools which have made others' path a little easier, perhaps, which 'pay forward' the inspiration of how we can make our world a little kinder.  I hope we never lose these insights as we move back into "ordinary" time.

The Lord be with you.

 

Streaming Masses and Announcements for the week of 12 September 2021

RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED
Please see the COVID Response and Guide on the left for NEW COVID Protocols issued by the Bishop are effective Friday, 28 May 2021


STREAMING SUNDAY AND WEEKDAY MASSES

Today's Live-Streamed Mass 
Worship Aid for the 24th Sunday of Ordinary Time


fleur cross logo 
Last to call for those interested in becoming Catholic either by Baptism or Profession of Faith. If you or someone you know are seeking answers and might be thinking about 
joining the Catholic Church, please contact the parish office to register. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins tomorrow, Monday, 13 September.

fleur cross logo There are several changes to this month’s youth ministry calendar and Confirmation retreat dates. Please see today’s bulletin announcements for more information.

fleur cross logo Ladies, please join us for our first meeting of the Saint Bernadette's Women's group this year. Last year we met several times online, and it was obvious that we need to stay connected during these difficult times! Our first meeting of the year will be tomorrow, Monday, 13 September at 7pm in the school cafeteria. For more information, contact Barbara Dalmut - bdalmut@gmail.com

fleur cross logo Please plan to join Christ Church and other area houses of worship to purchase, pack and distribute 165k life-changing meals. In the midst of much change, we want to continue be a shining light for the world’s most vulnerable. See today’s bulletin or speak to a representative after all Masses this weekend for more information or signup here.

fleur cross logo The second collection next weekend is for Parish Facilities and Maintenance. Thank you for your generosity.

fleur cross logo Join us next week for the Taizé Prayer Service September, Monday, September 20 at 8pm. Come pray for Christian unity in our community and in the world. All Christians are warmly invited; invite your friends!

fleur cross logo We will formally take up a second collection in two weeks in support of those impacted by the earthquake in Haiti. If you would like to provide financial assistance, please make checks payable to The Catholic Diocese of Arlington, with Haiti Earthquake Disaster in the memo line.

fleur cross logo Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we recommend that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 12 September 2021

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
This year we have kept our chins up and remained optimistic in the middle of so much uncertainty.  With the increasing rates of infection and hospitalization, we have had to make some decisions about our fall events at Saint Bernadette.
 
I regret to say that we have decided not to hold the parish picnic in October.  We are trying to keep our school kids safe and intact and such an event would compromise our overall policy for safety.  All our kids must come first, especially as there is no vaccine available for them right now.
 
The group which hosts the Lord of the Miracles Mass, procession and dinner in October has decided to keep the Mass on October 2 at 10am, but have canceled the procession and dinner.
 
We've decided to postpone choirs singing at Mass for now.  They have been rehearsing very carefully and will continue to prepare, but have decided it is best to wait a little longer.
 
We still plan to move forward with our celebration for the 40th anniversary of the dedication of our church with Bishop Burbidge on Thursday, October 14 at 7pm.  It will be a very special celebration - we will bless our new dedication candles (see at left) as well as (hopefully) have the choir platform finally done.  One other special event at this Mass will be the blessing of our new church bells by Bishop Burbidge.  
 
The intention for that Mass will be for the repose of the soul of Mike LeMay, the architect of our church who died in June.  We became friends in the past year.  On his first visit back after many years he walked up the steps and asked me where the bells were.  I asked him what he was talking about.  He said the bells, the bells.  There are supposed to be bells hanging from the underside of that long left arm of the cross to soften the line.  Otherwise, he said, the whole thing doesn't make sense.  I had sometimes wondered why he designed the faÇade of the church like he did.  Suddenly, imagining the bells there, it did make sense. We are grateful to the Herrity/Burger/Kennedy families for providing us with the gift that makes this possible.  We will have angelus bells at noon and 6pm, bells calling people to Mass at five minutes to Mass' beginning, joyful ringing bells for weddings and a tolling bell for funerals.  It will be a great addition to our expression of how liturgy sanctifies time.  Unfortunately, at least at this time, we will not host a reception following the anniversary Mass.
 
A couple of other things I would like to bring to your attention.  You are invited to join us for Taizé prayer on Monday, September 21, 8-8:45pm, and a special blessing of your pets and animals on the Feast of Saint Francis, Monday evening at 6pm in front of the Grotto of Lourdes.
 
Large public gatherings remain problematic, but if everyone remains careful we will beat this thing yet.
 

The Lord be with you.

Streaming Masses and Announcements for the week of 5 September 2021

RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED
Please see the COVID Response and Guide on the left for NEW COVID Protocols issued by the Bishop are effective Friday, 28 May 2021


STREAMING SUNDAY AND WEEKDAY MASSES

Today's Live-Streamed Mass 
Worship Aid for the 23rd Sunday of Ordinary Time

fleur cross logo The second collection next weekend is for Religious Education. Thank you for your generosity.

fleur cross logo We welcome all who might be discerning becoming Catholic either by Baptism or Profession of Faith. If you or someone you know are seeking answers and might be thinking about joining the Catholic Church, please contact the parish office to register. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins Monday 13 September.

fleur cross logo There are several changes to this month’s youth ministry calendar and Confirmation retreat dates. Please see today’s bulletin announcements for more information.

fleur cross logo We are still in need of volunteers for Religious Education classes this fall. Catechists and Aides are needed for both Sunday and Monday Sessions. Training, materials, and support is provided. Please contact Lynn Jones at the parish offices for details.

fleur cross logo We will formally take up a second collection the weekend of 26 September to provide support to those impacted by the earthquake in Haiti on 14 August. If you would like to provide financial assistance in advance of the collection, please make checks payable to The Catholic Diocese of Arlington, with Haiti Earthquake Disaster in the memo line.

fleur cross logo Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we recommend that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings.

fleur cross logo Parish offices will be closed on Monday, Sept. 6th in observance of Labor Day Holiday.

 

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 5 September 2021

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

There was a reading at a weekday Mass last week and it stayed with me.  We find ourselves in very challenging times—even if our world had to only deal with two or three of the profound tragedies causing so much suffering.  The Haiti earthquake, hundreds of thousands of acres on fire in the west, the largest hurricanes to make landfall and most extreme weather in all of recorded history.  All around the world autocrats are subjugating peoples and obscuring truth and justice.  Floods and famines.  Wealthy people are getting wealthier faster than ever before and poverty is overwhelming.  Oh, and good old global pandemic continues just as strong as when it was at its worst.

Not that you aren't aware of all of this already (I hope I'm not the bearer of bad news), but it seems to be the shadow in the background of life these days, and I have encountered many people who are weary and worried about losing hope.

Remember the thing about shadows.  They can't exist in light unless I have introduced something in the room which blocks the light and casts the shadow.  Remember the light in Jesus' face at the transfiguration on Mount Tabor?  That light emanates from you as well, and you must remember it when you encounter darkness.

The reading was from St. Paul's letter to the people of Thessaloniki.  He says, "Concerning times and seasons, brothers and sisters, you have no need for anything to be written to you.  For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief at night.  When people are saying, “Peace and security,” then sudden disaster comes upon them, like labor pains upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.
"But you, brothers and sisters, you are not in darkness, for that day to overtake you like a thief. For all of you are children of the light and children of the day.  We are not of the night or of darkness.  Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do..."

Children of the light, of day.  The Gospel that same day was about the power and authority with which Jesus spoke, astonishing the people.  The power of his word was able to drive out evil, quiet storms, and at the same time quietly call each of us to himself.  

When confronted with the uncertainty and worry of today, always remember the power and authority with which you have been reborn.  With faith the size of a mustard seed—can I really command that mountain to be uprooted and cast into the sea?  Have I ever really tried?

One thing I do know—God hasn't filled us with good gifts and then put us out in the street where it's every-man-for-himself.  He has called us together because the power of the One flows through all of us and we have our identity because we are together.  Last week:  Be doers of the word and not just hearers!  Let us help each other recall that power.

The Lord be with you.

Streaming Mass and Announcements for the Week of 29 August 2021

RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED
Please see the COVID Response and Guide on the left for NEW COVID Protocols issued by the Bishop are effective Friday, 28 May 2021


STREAMING SUNDAY AND WEEKDAY MASSES

Today's Live-Streamed Mass 
Worship Aid for the 22nd Sunday of Ordinary Time


fleur cross logo Religious Education Registration is open
on the parish website. Please tell your friends! We need everyone to be registered ASAP to help us plan for the fall. Classes begin Sunday, 19 September. Registration closes 31 August.

fleur cross logo It’s time to start thinking about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins September 13 and we welcome all who are interested in learning more about our Catholic Faith. If you or someone you know are seeking answers and might be thinking about joining the Catholic Church, call and register for the process in the parish office.
 
fleur cross logo All our Saint Bernadette choirs are welcoming new members.  We have choirs for singers of all ages,  including three adult choirs in English and Spanish, Children’s Choir for 1st through 6th grade and, starting this fall, the re-launch of our Youth Choir for 7th through 12th grade.  For more information see stbernpar.org/praying/music-ministry or contact Director of Music Ministries David Mathers at 703-451-8575 x112 or dmathers@stbernpar.org

fleur cross logo We will formally take up a second collection the weekend of 26 September to provide support to those impacted by the earthquake in Haiti on 14 August. If you would like to provide financial assistance in advance of the collection, please make checks payable to The Catholic Diocese of Arlington, with Haiti Earthquake Disaster in the memo line. Checks can be mailed directly to the following address: Catholic Diocese of Arlington, PO Box 1960, Merrifield, VA 22116-1960

fleur cross logo Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week, we recommend that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 29 August 2021

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

 
One of the things I am really excited about now in my ecumenical and interreligious work is the possibility of starting a new relationship with Native American Tribes, both with those who were baptized Christians as well as those who still embrace their native spirituality. The ground of dialogue is holy ground, and we have a lot of work to do in the area of expressing our respect and seeking reconciliation for the way the native peoples of this land we now occupy were treated.
 
There has been a lot in the news lately of the destruction of tribes and culture in the effort of turning the native peoples of North America into Europeans.  Indian boarding schools were established by the government to "civilize" and assimilate Native American children, many of being Church institutions.  Abuse and violence was common, families were literally torn apart, and children found themselves in a vacuum between their culture which they were taught was pagan (separating them from their tribes) and a new Euro-American culture which didn't really accept them, either.  Suicide was common.  Tribes were reduced, relocated, then lost their substitute lands and relocated to less and less valuable land.  It is a very dark chapter in our history.
 
I remember seeing the property title to our farm when my parents paid it off.  We were the fourth owners of the land in eastern Kansas.  The first owner was listed as the Confederated Tribes, the second, the U.S. Government.  Kansas became a state in 1861.  There was a family that purchased our 80 acres in 1862, and we bought it in 1974.  Suddenly this story was literally too close to home.  Our church was in a small town called Wea, in a county named Miami, whose county seat was Paola.  Nearby towns were named Osawatomie and Pottawatomie.  These are all names of tribes which, with the Shawnee and Peoria peoples, comprised the Consolidated Tribes.
 
I dug a little deeper. I discovered our farm was one mile west of what is now known as the Trail of Death which began in Indiana and ended in eastern Kansas.  A treaty signed in 1836 forced Indian tribes in the eastern United States to move west of the Mississippi River.  Some tribes refused to leave their lands and were forcibly removed and marched to eastern Kansas where they were given land.  Many died along the way and were buried on the trail. It was here that St. Rose Philippine Duchesne ministered to the native peoples.  Her shrine is about 50 miles south of our farm.  The Indian tribes were relocated again, finally, to Oklahoma in 1868.
 
These stories, sadly, are repeated in nearly every part of our country and, probably, the world.  I think of my own people who came from Ireland, driven away, and wish today I knew how to speak Irish.
 
I'm wondering: Would anyone in the parish like to become part of a conversation with some of the local Indian Nations in Virginia?  I'd love a conversation about what that might look like with the Pamunkey, Chickahominy, Mattaponi or Rappahannock tribes.
 
The Lord be with you.

 

 

Streaming Masses and Weekly Announcements for the week of 22 August 2021

RESERVATIONS ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED
Please see the COVID Response and Guide on the left for NEW COVID Protocols issued by the Bishop are effective Friday, 28 May 2021


STREAMING SUNDAY AND WEEKDAY MASSES

Today's Live-Streamed Mass 
Worship Aid for the 21st Sunday of Ordinary Time


fleur cross logo Religious Education Registration is open
on the parish website. Please tell your friends! We need everyone to be registered ASAP to help us plan for the fall. Classes begin Sunday, 19 September. Registration closes 31 August.

fleur cross logo It’s time to start thinking about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins September 11 and we welcome all who are interested in learning more about our Catholic Faith. If you or someone you know are seeking answers and might be thinking about joining the Catholic Church, call and register for the process in the parish office.
 
fleur cross logo All our Saint Bernadette choirs are welcoming new members.  We have choirs for singers of all ages,  including three adult choirs in English and Spanish, Children’s Choir for 1st through 6th grade and, starting this fall, the re-launch of our Youth Choir for 7th through 12th grade.  For more information see stbernpar.org/praying/music-ministry or contact Director of Music Ministries David Mathers at 703-451-8575 x112 or dmathers@stbernpar.org

fleur cross logo Today's second collection will support the annual Mission Cooperative Plan Appeal for our diocese.  This year our parish mission organization are our diocesan-sponsored parishes in the diocese of San Juan de la Maguana, St. Francis in Bánica and St. John the Baptist in Pedro Santana. Thank you for your generosity.

fleur cross logo Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week, we recommend that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 22 August 2021

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

Hopefully we will be able to participate in welcoming Afghan Refugees as they come, and not politicize this responsibility like has happened with so many other moral issues.  In recent years the State Department program has been suppressed so we haven't seen many placements in northern Virginia, but this will likely change. In the meantime, we must pray for both American soldiers and personnel as well as the people in Afghanistan who have an uncertain future ahead.

I would like to quell some rumors that are already circulating, and explain how Catholic Charities' Refugee Resettlement Program works.

The Catholic Church does not bring Refugees into the country.  The U.S. State Department does, and Catholic Charities is one agency who helps place them after they have completed a lengthy screening process by the State Department, Homeland Security, the DOD and the FBI, a process that sometimes takes years.  Catholic Charities gives food, shelter and other essential services to assist Refugees in their transition, as we have done for 100 years.

These Refugees, applicants for a Special Immigration Visa (SIV) are now targets because of their service to our country.  Afghans and Iraqis who have found a home in our diocese in the past have had an average history of working with our military or government for 5-10 years in their home countries.  Because they were embedded with our military they are now targets and have fled to our country with their families to seek refuge. Many come with shrapnel in their bodies which they sustained protecting our soldiers and contractors.

None of the families who have come here live on the street.  Refugees have jobs, learn English, pay taxes, take classes and build careers, working toward advanced degrees, becoming citizens, purchasing homes and starting businesses.  Refugees do not add to homelessness.

Further information and stories may be found with Catholic Charities/Catholic Diocese of Arlington, as well as the State Refugee Coordinator and the Virginia Office of Newcomer Services.  More information about the screening process may be found at https://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/us-government-rush-evacuate-afghan-allies-allocate-special-visas.

Pope Francis:  “We must not be taken aback by their numbers, but rather view them as persons, seeing their faces and listening to their stories, trying to respond as best we can to their situation. To respond in a way which is always humane, just and fraternal. We need to avoid a common temptation today: to discard whatever proves troublesome” (Speech to U.S. Congress, 9/24/15).
Stay tuned, hopefully we can get involved in a significant way in helping these sisters and brothers.

The Lord be with you.

 

mass cards 3 small 002

Mass Intentions

 dedication candle

40th Jubilee Dedication Candles.

In observance of our 40th anniversary of the dedication of the church,
we are commissioning 12 dedication
candles to place
on the walls of the church. 

This photo shows the concept; the cross medallion on the wall will be different. 
The candles will be detachable for processions. 

Each candle is available for a memorial opportunity, $3,000, with the surname

of the donor family engraved on the cross medallion. 
Memorials will be included in a new memorial window in the baptistry. 

Only three candles remain:
contact Fr. Don.

 

*UPDATE* Bishop's Message on relaxing of COVID Protocols Effective 28 May

COVID Response / COVID Guide for the Lay Faithful
COVID Response / COVID Guide for the Lay Faithful (español)

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