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Announcements ~ 22 September 2019

fleur cross logo  This is Commitment Weekend for the public phase of our Capital Campaign for Community, "Make All Things New."  The private gifts phase has already placed us above $2.7 million for a $5 million goal and we appeal to you to truly support this opportunity for depth and growth for our community.  Hopefully you had an opportunity to really pray about how important this parish is to you and how we need space to be together.  This weekend please fill out a commitment card and place it in the basket.  Cards are in the pews.  You'll notice there is no envelope:  we are asking you for a commitment over time, not just a one-time gift.  Our society needs to put Church back into the center of its life.

fleur cross logo Think about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults began September 12.  It is not too late!  We welcome all who are interested in learning about becoming Catholic. If you or someone you know are seeking answers, call and register in the parish office. 
 
fleur cross logo Our Confirmation preparation process starts a year earlier this year in 6th Grade. If you have sixth OR seventh graders, you should have received a letter from us. Sixth graders who begin preparation this year will be confirmed the start of their 8th grade year (Fall 2021). Seventh graders who begin the process this year and will be confirmed their at the end of the 8th grade year (Spring 2021). Register now.
 
fleur cross logo Next weekend we will welcome a guest priest from Cross Catholic Outreach.  Fr. Frank Iacona, CMF, will speak at all the Masses on behalf of the poor in developing countries.  Cross Catholic Outreach was founded to create a meaningful link between parishes in America and the priests and sisters working in the Church overseas in the Caribbean, Africa, Asia, Central and South America.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 22 September 2019

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
Last weekend I had an important opportunity to give a homily to the whole church at Saint Bernadette, something that a pastor doesn't get to do often.  With many Masses and many priests offering homilies, it is rare that you have a united message that is sent out to all the people of the church.  If you didn't get a chance to hear it, please know my homilies are always available on our parish website.  Once the page loads, simply scroll over the world "welcome" in the horizontal menu at the top of the page.  A menu will drop down, and toward the bottom, click on the word "homilies."
 
I followed several primary themes which I thought were vital for this opportunity to speak the truth to everyone at once.  The homily ran a little longer than usual (I cut out all that I could) but most people didn't seem to mind.
 
As you give a homily multiple times on a weekend it also starts to clarify in your mind.  What I was doing—and I actually said this in later homilies—was appealing to you to fight for the soul of our Church.  By strengthening families, helping parents to be good parents, children not to abandon the faith, to help our church community truly be a church community, not just a cultural identity. 
 
The Church doesn't exist to give us what we want:  God wants us and as the Church we offer ourselves to him.  It is, in the example of Jesus, self-gift that brings about salvation.  We have to give ourselves away to him.  This takes place in the form of bread and wine, and we become the Body of Jesus.  Not to get Jesus, but to be Jesus.  Most people are settling for far less than God wants to give us.
 
So we have to do better in our obligation to properly form ourselves to be Jesus.  This is not accomplished by self-study, or self-examination, though those things might be helpful.  It only happens when we become—as a community—witnesses of the presence of Jesus in the world.  We learn not as much by study as we do by doing.  Yes, we must teach our children the ways of God's love so that they might be a city of light on a hilltop for the future, but we must first learn what to teach them, and how to teach them.  This is where we don't know what we don't know.
 
Parish programs for adult formation, therefore, are primary and vital for parish life, for spiritual life.  And adult formation is what we don't do well.  If we give it a try, will people come?  I don't know, but we must try.

Therefore it becomes necessary to have facilities that allow our family truly become this family of God.  As I said, as parents must provide a home that is clean, safe and modest, able to provide for the needs, growth, fulfillment and leisure for their family, so must we provide for our parish family.
 
We distributed pledge cards.  There is one in this bulletin, too (p. 9), if you didn't take one with you.  I request everyone, everyone, to pray about this and consider adding a"Light of the World," Nelly Bube, Kazakhstan pledge of a few dollars ($10?) a week to their weekly offering, whatever it might be.  If you don't give a weekly offering, this is a great place to start.  100% of anything given to the Capital Campaign Making All Things New will stay in the parish as a restricted fund to accomplish growth meeting the needs of community.
 
Campaigning for the soul of our church.  It might seem a little dramatic unless you scratch the surface of daily life.  We are so divided.  It concerns me that everything has become an effect of political polarization.  Even things that would never have been questioned internally by the faithful of previous generations—things like the Pope himself, or official Church Councils—are lightning rods of division today.  "Truth" is being used as a tool for partisan advancement, even within the Church.  We well might be on the path of schism.  
 
Is it possible that Saint Bernadette might become central to the lives of Catholics in the area once again?  I believe so.  And even become a city on the hill that provides good example and light to the surrounding community.  They might even see a better alternative by our example.  Maybe we can begin to reveal Jesus.  In the middle of so much individualism, his is the only voice that will unite us.
 
God bless you.
 

Announcements ~ 15 September 2019

fleur cross logo This is Parish Life Weekend.  Stop by the tents outside the church doors and talk to ministry representatives and see how you can get involved in the life of the parish.  All are welcome.  You will find a list of ministries and coordinators' contact information on page 7 of today's bulletin.
 
fleur cross logo Today is also the official kick-off of the public phase of our Capital Campaign for Community, "Make All Things New."  The private gifts phase has already placed us above $2.7 million for a $5 million goal and we appeal to you to truly support this opportunity for depth and growth for our community.  Take home a pledge card this week and really pray about how important this parish is to you and how we need space to be together.  Next weekend will be Commitment Sunday when we will fill out cards, or you can turn in the one you prepared in the coming week.  You'll notice there is no envelope:  we are asking you for a commitment over time, not just a "one-and-done."  Our society needs to put Church back into the center of its life.
 
fleur cross logo Next Saturday is the Feria Communitaria, or Community Resource Fair sponsored by Catholic Charities, the parish, and the Hermandad del Senor de los Milagros.  We will have resource tables and speakers in the gym 11am-3pm to reach out to help people with needs through many community resources.  Please see p. 8.
 
fleur cross logo Think about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults began last Thursday, September 12.  It is not too late!  We welcome all who are interested in learning about becoming Catholic. If you or someone you know are seeking answers, call and register in the parish office. 
 
fleur cross logo Our Confirmation preparation process starts a year earlier this year in 6th Grade. If you have sixth OR seventh graders, you should have received a letter from us. Sixth graders who begin preparation this year will be confirmed the start of their 8th grade year (Fall 2021). Seventh graders who begin the process this year and will be confirmed their at the end of the 8th grade year (Spring 2021). Register now.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 15 Septmeber 2019

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

As we get back into the swing of things with the school year it is great to see so many people at Mass, so many more. it seems, even than last year. Despite what we hear, here we see more people at Mass, as well as have steady enrollment again in the school this year, when almost all Catholic schools are showing a decline. These are very hopeful signs and we are grateful.

I'm also VERY excited about the Alpha Series that we are opening up to both Adults and Youth this fall. Both are series with a limited number of video meetings—an indefinite commitment is not necessary. After the Called and Gifted Workshop on Saturday we took the presenters Charlie and Jona out for dinner and were speaking about it. When Jona was Director of Evangelization for her archdiocese, she started Alpha in many of their parishes and said that she never saw anything build up community like Alpha. The program responds to a real need for people my generation and younger, those between 40 and 60, who more or less missed out on good catechesis and formation in the Faith and didn't have it to teach their own children. These were the years after Vatican II until the Church was developing the Catechism of the Catholic Church and new formation programs. Look around, they commented, it is this age group that you will not see in church.

Well, we don't know what we don't know—I realized this only when I got to the seminary at 28 years of age—despite the fact that I went to Catholic elementary school and a Catholic college. And nobody wants to feel exposed about what they don't know. This is why Alpha seems to be so successful: it is a safe place where everyone comes to watch a video together and discuss the topic. It takes very basic realities of life and challenges people to apply faith. And to do it, in many cases, for the first time. It has had great success with Millennials because of the challenge it makes without confrontation. At least, this is what I understand it to be. I asked our presenters Charlie and Jona if they thought I might participate in the Series and they told me what I already suspected. No. If I were there, people would be uncomfortable speaking up. You'll have to let me know your impressions after going to the Series.

Fr. Rich and I are going to put together a list of basics that maybe people need to hear, things perhaps they suspect but don't know for sure, because we don't know what we don't know. As I said last week, just because we aren't aware of our poverty, it isn't a good reason to stay impoverished, especially since we know that it is God's plan that we be rich in his life and the life of his Church. There are many things people take for granted, too, to which we should at least define limits so that people might be informed, then form their consciences and respond with integrity.

One of the things I would like very much to talk about is how we attend Mass. Sometimes when Mass starts there are very few people in the church, as much as 75% of the assembly arrives late. When we start Mass I'm concerned that we are consecrating too many Hosts, and then after Communion we almost run out. Everyone rushes to everything anymore, I wonder if we could adjust our clocks to rush to 10 minutes of silence and peace before Mass actually begins, so that when it does we can be truly present to God as he is really present to us? A lot of people pack into the back corner of the church because they come in late, then Holy Communion takes literally twice as long on that side because people are not evenly distributed. If you are late, please just trust that people will not judge ( I do not), and come up closer to the altar.

A difficulty I have with daily Mass is that everyone sits so spread out (are people trying to make Mass a private affair?) that when the assembly responds to the prayers I often can't even hear the responses, or at least only a murmur. It often feels like I am doing Mass alone, except that I can see people out there. So many times I have asked and nobody moves. Come forward and take your place, experience your voice blending, interacting as the assembly. Mass is not ideal in our football stadium except on Christmas Eve and Easter Sunday. Together, everyday, we are (must be!) the voice of Jesus making his prayer to the Father. Alone?—well, we are just alone.

It is a goal that we also have, to have silent time before and after Mass. We have asked the choirs and musicians not to rehearse in the church before Mass so that this will be possible. Silence is so important—and so rare in our lives today—and we need it badly. Give yourself this gift to be centered and recollected to prepare for your encounter with the Father as the Body of Christ. Take the time to think of what you are offering to God at this Mass today, allow your self-gift to deepen and mature with the practice of silence in God's presence. You will be delighted with what happens. In the same way, as Mass ends, you may leave during the recessional hymn if you wish, or you may stay for a prayer. We hope to keep the church quiet after Mass as well. Please help.

Save the date: Holy Land Trip, February 10-23, 2020!

God bless you.

 

 

Announcements ~ September 8, 2019

fleur cross logo Religious Education Class begin THIS WEEK: Enrollment is NOW!  Registration forms are available in the Church Vestibule and Parish Office. For more information, please visit our website: stbernpar.org.
 
fleur cross logo All our St. 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 Think about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins this Thursday, September 12 and we welcome all who are interested in learning more about our Catholic Faith, and considering becoming Catholic. If you or someone you know are seeking answers, call and register for the process in the parish office. 
 
fleur cross logo Our Confirmation preparation process starts a year earlier this year in 6th Grade. If you have sixth or seventh graders, you should have received a letter from us. Sixth graders who begin preparation this year will be confirmed the start of their 8th grade year (Fall 2021). Seventh graders who begin the process this year and will be confirmed their at the end of the 8th grade year (Spring 2021). Information sessions will be scheduled at the beginning of the school year.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ September 8, 2019

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
Words are important even if not too many people are listening.  Sometimes I look around this world and wonder what God must think.  Of course, for him there are no surprises, he knows our hearts and our lives better than we know ourselves.  But I think it a great irony that his Word became flesh and so many people are too busy to listen or pay attention to his Presence.  It is the irony of Creation.
 
By the time you read this, we will have completed the Called and Gifted Workshop on Saturday the 7th.  We didn’t think we would hold it again since attendance in 2018 was light from Saint Bernadette, but we decided to give it another try.  This year (at least at the time I am writing this) attendance is even less, although we have attracted people from other parishes and dioceses.  This will probably be the last one we host for a while.
 
When I was in the Dominican Republic years ago, it was a time before electricity, before water came to the town, before cell phones.  The nearest phone was in a town over a half hour away.  There were electric wires installed, but the power would only come on maybe for an hour some afternoons.  It was not sufficient for refrigeration or light at night.  You could read a book with a couple candles under your mosquito netting.  We would bring barrels of water to be used in the house from the river and pump it into the tanks on the roof with a gas generator.  Very few people had plumbing like we had in the church house, most couldn't buy bottled water so they boiled water over open fires in their yards.  The houses of the wealthier people had a cement floor, most had walls made of mud and sticks and a roof of thatch.  It was a world void of art as such, though there was a constant hammering of radios and boom boxes playing the popular bachata music, the music of the campo.
 
People generally focused on what they needed to do to stay alive for another season.  Some had relatives who sent money back, but mostly people were just surviving.
 
As I recall, however, there was not a self-awareness of poverty.  It was just life.  The internet went public around that time, but most of us even here in the states did not go on line right away.  It was the time just before the information age began.  The rest of the world had not yet broken into the daily life of our villages.  They didn’t know what it was to be poor, because they didn’t know just how rich others could be.
 
It might be possible to say that it is just as well that they didn’t know, that ignorance is bliss.  I don’t believe that this is a healthy approach to poverty, however.  God spoke his Word, and that Word became flesh, so that ignorance would not be our human condition.  So that we might know why (his love) and how (his love) all this came into being, for us (his beloved) and our salvation (so that we might be with him always).
 
We live a poverty in so many ways that clearly is not the will of God, but is the comfortable, manageable, predictable ignorance for which we have agreed to settle with the world.  A poverty of formation.
And too often we are tempted just to blame all this on God, even though he has done nothing but try to get our attention to help pull ourselves out of it.
 
Pope Francis, in his encyclical “Laudato si,” says that God’s will for us is two-fold:  conversion and action.  First, to turn back to him after the many ways we have turned away (he is the Father waiting, watching at the end of the road - for how long? - for his prodigal son to return), second, to do something about it.  To use the gifts you received in the sacrament of Baptism, revealing a roadmap of your life in union with God’s plan.  For most people these gifts have not even yet been unwrapped and identified.
 
What is God calling you to do?  Would you please take some time this week and consider how you might make a commitment for ministry in the parish next weekend?  It will be Parish Life weekend:  we will have a tent outside each exit; please stop and respond to the call.
 
The Church is not a committee of volunteers.  Volunteers say, “This is what I choose to do.”  The Church is the assembly of the called, those who respond to a call they have found which comes from God, to which they simply say “Yes, Lord, here I am.”  Ministry is always a response to an existing need.  We don’t need to invent more need, we simply see need and respond. 
 
Those who truly hear the Word of God realize at some point that there is no going back, that the Word becomes a part of you.  When the Word made Flesh spoke his last Word on the Cross, there was a moment where Jesus said it was finished, the work he came here to do in obedience to the Father.  The mission of Christ had been completely and perfectly placed in the hands of his followers with the promised power of the Holy Spirit of God to keep us faithful and active in him.
 
This week ask God to reveal the unique plan he has prepared for you from before creation.  Don’t settle for poverty: instead, seek God’s fullness.  Take action.
 
God bless you.
 

Announcements ~ 1 September 2019

fleur cross logo Next weekend is the Called and Gifted Workshop, Saturday, September 7, 2019. Just when you thought you there wasn't a program that could help you know your path by God's plan, this Workshop comes along! For more information please see page 13 in this bulletin or visit our parish website announcement page for online registration.
 
fleur cross logo Religious Education Class begin next week: Enrollment is NOW!  Registration forms are available in the Church Vestibule and Parish Office. For more information, please visit our website: stbernpar.org. Calling all Catechists! Please respond to the call to share your faith with our children and the youth of the parish.
 
fleur cross logo All our St. 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 Think about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins this September and we welcome all who are interested in learning more about our Catholic Faith, and considering becoming Catholic. If you or someone you know are seeking answers, call and register for the process in the parish office. 
 
fleur cross logo Our Confirmation preparation process starts a year earlier this year in 6th Grade. If you have sixth or seventh graders, you should have received a letter from us. Sixth graders who begin preparation this year will be confirmed the start of their 8th grade year (Fall 2021). Seventh graders who begin the process this year and will be confirmed their at the end of the 8th grade year (Spring 2021). Information sessions will be scheduled at the beginning of the school year.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 1 September 2019

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,
 
This Sunday is September 1, the day that Pope Francis has declared "World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation."  Churches across the world will pray that we might take better care of God's wonderful gift intended for us and our future generations to live full and happy lives in harmony with him and our world.  Here is as much of his 2018 message as I can reprint here:
 
Dear brothers and sisters,
 
On this Day of Prayer, I wish first to thank the Lord for the gift of our common home and for all those men and women of good will committed to protecting it. I am likewise grateful for the many projects aimed at promoting the study and the safeguarding of ecosystems, for the efforts being made to develop more sustainable agriculture and more responsible nutrition, and for the various educational, spiritual and liturgical initiatives that involve Christians throughout the world in the care of creation.
 
It must be acknowledged that we have not succeeded in responsibly protecting creation. The environmental situation, both on the global level and in many specific places, cannot be considered satisfactory. Rightly, there is a growing sense of the need for a renewed and sound relationship between humanity and creation, and the conviction that only an authentic and integral vision of humanity will permit us to take better care of our planet for the benefit of present and future generations. For “there is no ecology without an adequate anthropology” (Laudato Si’, 118).
 
On this World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, which the Catholic Church for several years now has celebrated in union with our Orthodox brothers and sisters and with participation of other Churches and Christian communities, I would like to draw attention to the question of water. It is a very simple and precious element, yet access to it is, sadly, for many people difficult if not impossible. Nonetheless, “access to safe drinkable water is a basic and universal human right, since it is essential to human survival and, as such, is a condition for the exercise of other human rights. Our world owes a great social debt towards the poor who lack access to drinking water, because they are denied the right to a life consistent with their inalienable dignity” (ibid., 30).
 
Water invites us to reflect on our origins. The human body is mostly composed of water, and many civilizations throughout history arose near great rivers that marked their identity. In an evocative image, the beginning of the book of Genesis states that, in the beginning, the spirit of the Creator “swept over the face of the waters (1:2)”.
 
For us Christians, water represents an essential element of purification and of life. We think immediately of baptism, the sacrament of our rebirth. Water made holy by the Spirit is the matter by which God has given us life and renewed us; it is the blessed source of undying life. For Christians of different confessions, baptism also represents the real and irreplaceable point of departure for experiencing an ever more authentic fraternity on the way to full unity. Jesus, in the course of his mission, promised a water capable of quenching human thirst for ever (cf. Jn 4:14). He prophesied, “If any one thirst, let him come to me and drink (Jn 7:37). To drink from Jesus means to encounter him personally as the Lord, drawing from his words the meaning of life. To give to drink, in the global village, does not only entail personal gestures of charity, but also concrete choices and a constant commitment to ensure to all the primary good of water.
 
Constant care for this inestimable treasure represents today an ineluctable duty and a genuine challenge. There is need for an effective cooperation between men and women of good will in assisting the ongoing work of the Creator. Sadly, all too many efforts fail due to the lack of effective regulation and means of control, particularly with regard to the protection of marine areas beyond national confines (cf. Laudato Si’, 174).
 
Let us pray that waters may not be a sign of separation between peoples, but of encounter for the human community. Let us pray that those who risk their lives at sea in search of a better future may be kept safe. Let us ask the Lord and all those engaged in the noble service of politics that the more sensitive questions of our day, such as those linked to movements of migration, climate change and the right of everyone to enjoy primary goods, may be faced with generous and farsighted responsibility and in a spirit of cooperation, especially among those countries most able to help.
 
Finally, let us be concerned for the younger generation and pray for them, that they may grow in knowledge and respect for our common home and in the desire to care for the essential good of water, for the benefit of all. It is my prayerful hope that Christian communities may contribute more and more concretely helping everyone to enjoy this indispensable resource, in respectful care for the gifts received from the Creator, and in particular rivers, seas and oceans.
 
God bless you.

 

Announcements ~ 25 August 2019

fleur cross logo Religious Education Class Enrollment is NOW!  Registration forms are available in the Church Vestibule and Parish Office. For more information, please visit our website: stbernpar.org. Calling all Catechists! Please respond to the call to share your faith with our children and the youth of the parish.
 
fleur cross logo All our St. 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 Saint Bernadette is hosting a Called and Gifted Workshop on Saturday, September 7, 2019. Just when you thought you there wasn't a program that could help you know your path by God's plan, this Workshop comes along! For more information please see page 9 in this bulletin or visit our parish website announcement page for online registration.
 
fleur cross logo Think about RCIA. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults begins this September and we welcome all who are interested in learning more about our Catholic Faith, and considering becoming Catholic. If you or someone you know are seeking answers, call and register for the process in the parish office.  For an overview, please see last week's bulletin on our parish website.
 
fleur cross logo Our Confirmation preparation process starts a year earlier this year in 6th Grade. If you have sixth or seventh graders, you should have received a letter from us. Sixth graders who begin preparation this year will be confirmed the start of their 8th grade year (Fall 2021). Seventh graders who begin the process this year and will be confirmed their at the end of the 8th grade year (Spring 2021). Information sessions will be scheduled at the beginning of the school year.

Fr. Don's Weekly Letter ~ 25 August 2019

Dear Good People of Saint Bernadette,

We've been talking about how September will be a big month and it is already here...  Of course, it is the beginning of our programming year for education and ministries, and this week many of these programs are underway.  Please watch carefully and be in touch with the parish to make sure you have all the details for Faith Formation classes and other offerings that the parish has in store.

Please remember, the 6:30am Mass moves this week from Mondays and Thursdays to Mondays and Wednesdays.

Two sessions of religious education on Sunday afternoons and two sessions on Monday afternoon/evening are offered to the children of the parish.  The Family Faith Formation has fewer meetings, because religious education is done largely at home.  For more details on the program, please consult with the Faith Formation office.  Adult faith formation is offered through established Bible Studies (four each week) and the RCIA program on Thursday evenings.  We will be announcing soon the addition of an adult ALPHA series which will meet on Tuesday nights, probably in the cafeteria.  (The youth ALPHA series will be on Wednesday evenings, and will be held in a location depending on the response of attendees.)

Generally, here is the structure for September:

Labor Day weekend, offices are closed on Monday.  Classes will begin the weekend/week following.
Sunday, September 8.  Knights of Columbus Pancake Breakfast after morning Masses

September 14-15.  Parish Life weekend.  We're going to do it differently this year.  We are not going to publish the expensive catalogue of ministries with the annual theme and annual parish report in printed form, nor are we going to do a commitment card asking people to make commitments of time (praying), talent (serving) and treasure (giving).  Updated information about each of the ministries will be easily found on our parish website. 

Of course, we hope people will exercise these opportunities for holiness and community, but we will not be collecting cards and tabulating results.  Last year, of the around 4,000 cards we sent, we received responses from about 225.  Instead, we will have one tent at each of the exits of the church staffed with some representatives from various ministries who will be able to answer questions you may have.  Simply stop by the tent. 

You are all invited and encouraged to consider getting involved in parish ministries in some way, and signing up on lists for any ministry at the tent.  The ministry leaders will follow up with phone calls.  If you discover a ministry which might be needed by the parish community and think there would be sufficient support from members of the parish, Please let me know.  We are interested in deepening the life of the community and building our programs into the future.

September 21-22.  Commitment Sunday.  This is the official public kick-off for the parish Capital Campaign for the community of Saint Bernadette.  We've spoken and written a lot about this campaign and there are images and information in the vestibule of the church for months, now.  We discovered we didn't get off on the right foot—we weren't allowed to speak of it until we met our Bishop's Lenten Appeal goal last spring and then felt rushed to get the information, the brochures, the pledge cards in your hands.  As a result, we had only half the team we had hoped for to make advance calls for pledges and gifts, and many people didn't even respond to those calls.

We are hitting the reset button and I will be speaking at all Masses Parish Life Sunday weekend to ask for your support.  Our goal is so achievable, and the results will transform the possibilities for parish life now and for future generations.  We will simply distribute a commitment card and ask you to respond with a heart-felt dedication to support our family community.  For the many who have not given, we must give from the much we have received.  For those who have less, we ask you to do what you can.  For those who have already given, maybe you have discovered that a bit more could be added. 

We will have commitment cards available as well on Commitment Sunday Weekend in case you didn't take one home or forgot to bring it back.  Your gift is a visible witness to build a community that has strong ties with God and each other.  As I said once before, everyone who has a family knows they must provide a place for them to live, to grow, to succeed.  As the father of this family, I'm asking you to take part.

God bless you.

 

Adoration


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