From The Font
“Behold, the Lamb of God...”
For most of us, this phrase “Lamb of God” has been heard so many times that it has lost most or all of its meaning. Even at Mass when the Lord is raised up and father says “Behold, the Lamb of God. Behold Him, Who takes away the Sins of the World,” we tend to cue up our response rather than obeying the command to BEHOLD!
So what does “Lamb of God” mean? The phrase harkens back to the plagues which Moses brought to Egypt. When the Pharaoh’s obstinance was most hardened, God brought the most horrific of the plagues and threatened “the firstborn of every man and beast in Egypt.” The Jews were susceptible to this plague as they were to all the others, but God gave them an out. He said that they could avoid this plague by sacrificing a perfect year-old lamb and marking their doorways with its blood. God promised that this act would protect the Jewish firstborns from harm. No one could’ve predicted that God would truly fulfill this command by sending His own Son to be that lamb for us and for our sins. Lesser beings serve greater ones… That’s just the law of the universe. People ought not to spend their lives waiting on cats or dogs hand and foot. Kings don’t wait on their servants. Gods don’t sacrifice for their creations… And yet! God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son so that His creation might not perish...
It’s an exercise in absurdity. To be the Lamb of God is to be the one who will suffer. To be the Lamb of God is to be the one whose blood will be spread to abate the anger and vengeance of God. To be the Lamb of God is to be the one whose remains are quite literally left in the dust, still smoking in the fireplace while the Jews flee from Egypt. This profound and indescribable humility is summed up in the phrase “Lamb of God.” Of course, so is the hope which the Lamb brought about! The Lamb’s sacrifice meant life, freedom and promise of a future outside of slavery. The Lamb is a sign of hope even as it symbolizes and signifies sacrifice and suffering.
When we recall the Lamb of God, we need to keep in our minds this duality of suffering and hope - of short-term trial for long-term glory.
Thoughts from Fr. Ryan
This Wednesday will begin what I’m going to call Wednesday Night Catechism. After the 5:30p Mass in the Church, I’ll give a 25-30m presentation on some topic ranging from spiritual matters like “How to get to Heaven” (Feb 1st) to practical matters like “Symbols of the Mass” (this Wed, Jan 18) to quirky Catholic stuff like “10 Dates Every Catholic Should Know” (Feb 18). Each presentation will last no more than 30 minutes, but I’ll plan to answer questions one on one at each talk. The questions don’t have to be related to the talk that was just given. In fact, I’ve done whole talks before which are just Q&A. There won’t be a talk every Wednesday, but they will be frequent during the school year. Hopefully, these little additions to our parish schedule will be helpful to all of us. Suggestions for topics are very welcome.
I want to add a little note as well to say THANK YOU to those who attended and helped out with our Burning of the Greens… Good God in Heaven it was Cold! The event was simple and fun. We sang a bit, we blessed a bit and we ate a lot.
That’s what Catholic culture is! It’s meant to take our ordinary lives and tie them to the practice of our faith. It’s my hope that all of our parish social events would eventually be connected to some aspect of our faith. Jesus entered the world through the Jewish culture - a culture which felt strong connection between its social, political and religious traditions. For the Jews, it was entirely normal to expect that every social event would be tied to some supernatural reality. The Jews were festival-loving people. Here in the Catholic South, we feel the echoes of that kind of thinking. It’s normal for us to start off public events like Football games with prayer. It’s normal to expect our politicians to make their religious practices known. At our deepest levels, we want to experience continuity between our religious beliefs and our social beliefs and the way we live our lives. Catholicism - like being from the South - abhors compartmentalization.
Here at St. Edward, our social events ought to be connected intimately with our faith. The Burning of the Greens was a great way to start that. Perhaps we’ll have a special event for grandmothers near the feast of St. Ann (July 26) or a special ladies’ tea in honor of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Sept 8) or a men’s poker night near the anniversary of the Battle at Lepanto (Oct 7) or a blessing of beer on the feast of St. Patrick (Mar 17) or a St. Joseph Altar on the Feast of St. Joseph (Mar 19).
One of the interesting and important side effects of these events is that they are open and welcoming to potential converts and to our Protestant friends. They impart some of our Faith, but only some. The Mass isn’t designed to be welcoming to outsiders - it’s designed to worship God and to reinforce our Faith… These events, on the other hand, are open and welcoming and allow people to be drawn to the Lord through our hospitality and kindness.
Calendar of Events
- Confessions every Wed, Fri & Sat from 5p until Mass at 5:30p and on Sun from 9a until 9:30a Mass
- Pastoral Council meeting monthly on the third Tuesday after the 5:30p Mass
- Altar Society meeting every other month on the second Tuesday after the 5:30p Mass
- Jan 17 Parish Council Meeting -- Parish Hall -- Following 5:30 p.m. Mass
- Jan 18 Wednesday Night Catechism “Symbols of the Mass” -- Following 5:30p Mass
- Jan 23-27 Fr. Ryan in Washington, DC for the National March for Life
- Feb 26 Bishop Talley visit -- Potluck Brunch--1st quarter social -- following 9:30 a.m. Mass
For Your Information:
RELIGION CLASS will be held following Sunday Mass in the Church Hall.
PASTORAL COUNCIL..will hold its regular meeting on TUESDAY, JANUARY 17, at 6:00 p.m. (after 5:30 p.m. Mass) in the Church Center. All members are requested to make special effort to attend. Parishioners are encouraged to attend and contribute to the discussions.
Members of the Council: Libby Bullard, Kendra Collins, Dana Dukes, Michael Lancaster, Stephenie Marsh, Terry Murphy, Betty Smith, and Blanche Wilks. Appointed as Trustees by the Bishop are Brian Johnson and Dale Magoun. Appointed by the pastor to serve as Finance Council Chair is Darryl Ellerbee. Additionally, serving on the Council in an ex-officio capacity as President of the Altar Society will be Cathy VanderVieren.
STEWARDSHIP ENVELOPES…2017 Stewardship envelopes can be found at the entrance of church. If you do not find a box with your name on it, it is probably because you have indicated that you prefer not to use envelopes because you are doing automatic bill pay or some other method of conveying your monies to St. Edward. There is a page in the Stewardship book on which your contributions are noted week/month/quarter so that at the end of the year you will receive a statement of your contributions. If there is someone who would like envelopes and there are none there, please advise the church office.
2017 CALENDARS...are on the table at the entrance of church. We have enough for each family to have at least two (2) calendars so take one for home and one for your office or workplace.
2017 FLOWER CALENDAR is on the bulletin board at the entrance of church. Please consider special events in your life or that of your family and consider putting flowers on the altar at least once this year for one of those events. If each family put flowers just one week, we would have fresh flowers for the entire year. Just pencil your name or intention in on the calendar and the church office will call to remind you of the date.
BISHOP TALLEY VISIT… Bishop David Talley has accepted Father Ryan’s invitation to visit with us on Sunday, February 26 for Mass and our Mardi Gras Potluck Brunch so be sure to mark your calendar and plan to join us for the Bishop’s visit. The First Quarter Social group will give leadership to organizing the event but each of us will need to offer our assistance as well!!
The Voice of the Basket
- Weekly Budget FY 2016-17 $1,865
- December Budget $7,460
- December Income (Reg $9,172; Bldg $455) $9,627
- December Actual Expenses $6,871
- January Budget $9,325
- Collection January 7/8 $2,472
- January Income to Date $4,135
Stewardship Today’s responsorial Psalm is the theme song of the good steward: “Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will.” May I, too, stand ready to offer myself and my gifts in the service of God.
Special Collection Next week, we will take up the Collection for the Church in Latin America. Catholics in Latin America and the Caribbean face many challenges, including violence and a lack of both clergy and lay leadership to witness to the gospel message. Your support shares the faith with those in need, including the youth of Holy Family Parish in San Miguel, El Salvador. These young people, at high risk for violence, often lack an education in values and critical-thinking skills. To address this need, the parish designed a youth enrichment program. Funded by the Collection, this program gives the youth an opportunity to share their faith and break the cycle of violence in their neighborhoods. Please give generously to next week’s Collection.
Mass Intentions for the Coming Week
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Bruce Dorbeck/Andrews
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo For the Living & Dead members of our Parish Family
- Mon No Mass
- Tue 5:30p In memory of Tommy Bishop/Yerger
- Wed 5:30p In memory of Eva Reynolds/Famiy
- Thu 9:00a In memory of Gus Gremshell (Mass offered at the Olive Branch)
- Fri 5:30p In memory of Ghamogha Christopher, Helena Ngoh, Cosmas Kintarir, Emma Kintarir
- Sat 5:30p In memory of SeSe Holstead/S Wood
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo For the Living & Dead members of our Parish Family
Assistants at Holy Mass
- 1/14 5:30p
- Servers: N & C Hall
- Lector: Youth
- EMHCs: C VanderVieren & LBullard
- 1/15 9:30a
- Servers: P & A Collins
- Lector: Youth
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
- 1/21 5:30p
- Servers: N & C Hall
- Lector: M Rome
- EMHCs: A Farlow/MA Gilfoil
- 1/22 9:30a
- Servers: B & W Sullivan
- Lector: B Sullivan
- EMHCs: A Keene & L Magoun
- 1/28 5:30p
- Servers: N & C Hall
- Lector: S Harris
- EMHCs: P & M Gilfoil
- 1/29 9:30a
- Servers: EL & C Marsh
- Lector: A Oliver
- EMHCs: B Smith & K Collins
Let us Rejoice in the Lord!
Happy Birthday Pat Gilfoil (Jan 15), Renee Wood (Jan 18), Mary Jane Johnson (Jan 22), Brice Wood (Jan 22)
In Our Daily Prayers…
The Holy Father, Pope Francis, and the leaders of our church, including Bishop Ronald Herzog and Co-Adjutor Bishop David P. Talley; our President and President-elect, and the leaders of our nation as they and other world leaders seek peace in the world; our Governor and our legislators; success of our religious education program Our parishioners who are sick, shut-in, or in other need of our prayers: Pat Bullard, Connie Copes, Elizabeth Crothers, Susan Gilfoil, Billy Hodge, Bill Kennedy, Becky and Michael Lancaster, Dale Magoun, Kathleen Mills, Sue Rome, Sue Scurria, Delia Trichell, Our parishioners who are in the nursing home: Frances Kennedy, Andrew Lombardo, Juanita Storey AND Robert Anderson of Delhi, Jim Farrell, and James Speyerer of Vicksburg, Consuelo Marsh of Lake Providence, and our family members and friends, Jean Cantrell, Geneva Russell Our friends and relatives who need our prayers: Lee Adams (Smith), Ashley Weimer Alexander (Regan), Jenna Faye Allen (Florence), Margaret Baker (Magoun), Marie Farlow Bellard, Ruthie Boudreaux (Storey), Hattie Brown (Lancaster), Jerry Bullard, Colton Bullock (Farlow), Richard Chappuis (Johnson), Issac “DoDo” Crothers (Donham), Allison Crotwell (A Ginn), Jackie Daniels (Lancaster), Carol Dipert (Rome), Reba Duncan, Renee Edwards and parents (VanderVieren), George Eisworth family (Dyer), Joe Farlow, Rosemarie Finn (Hodge), Madge and Don Finney (Dyer), Tracy Jones Fortenberry (Donham), Thom Gilfoil, Kathy Garley Hanlon (Gilfoil), Jerry Ann Harmon (Hodge), Cooper Harris (R Wood), Alan Henley (Copes), Monroe Hill (K Dukes), Bo Holloway, Lou Horath (Hernandez), Kenlie Jackson (Dyer), Diane Johnson (Johnson), Jim Johnson(Dyer), Patsy Lancaster, Ben Legendre (Gilfoil), Ben Lenhart (G Marsh), LaLa Lopez (Hernandez), Will and Michelle (MS) McGuire (Gilfoil), Keith Melancon (Regan), Tucker Melancon (Johnson), Marie Phillips Michelle (Hodge), Lindsay Mills, Ashley Priest Moberly, Loyd Moore (Donham), Debbie Mullin (Dyer), Wanda Murphy (Terry), Addison Petracca (S Marsh), Debbie Pettis (Rome), Yvonne Phillips (Hodge), Wayne Pitre (Gilfoil), Dana Rogers (Dyer), Bailey Rome, Lee Rome, Tiffney Rome, Beverly Sabille (Gilfoil), Linda Sanchez (Wilks), Andy Sevier, Michael Stamper (Wilks), Lazette Thomason (Dyer), Elaine Trimble (Rome), Nicole Warren (Donham), Elizabeth, Randy and Camille Watts and Betty Kurfiss, Rusty White (Bullard), Conner and Hudson Wood (nephews of Bart) Our college students Will Donham, Courtney Ernst, Norman Ernst, Anna Ginn, Matt Hall, Josh Hall, Kathleen Oliver Those Catholics residing at Christian Acres, Louisiana Transitional Center for Women, and Madison Detention Center and the families of all of these.
PLEASE LET US KNOW OF ANYONE WHO IS ILL OR HOSPITALIZED OR WOULD LIKE TO RECEIVE A VISIT. PLEASE HELP US TO UP-DATE OUR PRAYER LIST BY ADVISING US OF ANYONE WHO SHOULD BE REMOVED FROM THE PRAYER LIST.