From The Font
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
Most of us will have heard this phrase hundreds of times - so much that it may well have lost much of its real power to shock us. It’s not just an aphorism of good psychology or kindergarten wisdom and good manners. It’s a profound statement about what we believe about ourselves and about those with whom we are in relationships.
If I hate myself, I will expect and even want others to reinforce that hatred and I will - consciously or unconsciously - treat them with contempt. If I am a narcissist, I will expect others to make me the center of their lives just as I am the center of my own life. If I genuinely love myself, I will want to share that love with others because all genuine love wants the good of the beloved and human beings thrive in relationships and in sharing. If I don’t love myself but I do like myself well enough, I will be a user of other people (because I will recognize that relationships are good for me) but not to the same degree that the self-involved or the narcissist does.
One of Pope St. John Paul II’s favorite quotations was from his own writing - “Jesus Christ, and He alone, fully reveals man to himself.” If we look to Jesus, we will come to a better understanding of ourselves because we are created in His image and likeness. The teaching of Jesus isn’t just about what we need to do to be different, it’s about how we can become who we are already made to be!
The Lord doesn’t tell us that doing unto others will make us better or make us saints. In a real way, He teaches us that doing unto others will make us more human, more who we are. Narcissists are less human than happy people. We all have a sense that depression and rage and arrogance aren’t morally neutral things - they are the result of having something missing from ourselves. Immorality somehow robs us of our humanity. The more Christian we are, the more human we will be - again, because we are made in the image and likeness of God. And so we mustn’t think of the commands of God as instructions on how to be different - but rather as instructions on how to be who we are made and meant to be.
Thoughts from Fr. Ryan
Lent is fast approaching and - for many priests - it will be a time of serious soul searching. I suppose it always is… But this year in particular, the whole season will be colored by the utter failure of Pope Francis, of most of his counselors, of many of our bishops and of a great many priests who have been promoted or protected through the years to the detriment of many souls in the Catholic Church. There are some tough questions to be answered about specific situations, to be sure.
Even moreso, there are some tough questions to address to the Lord about how and why He allowed this to happen. After all, Lord, I distinctly remember something in Gospels about The Gates of Hell and them not prevailing. It would seem that those gates are wide open and that they have been flooding into the Church for decades. Pope St. Paul VI famously said at the end of his life that the Smoke of Satan has entered the Sanctuary of the Church. He was speaking about the Liturgical changes after Vatican II.
And, to be honest, the soul searching has to extend beyond just governance. The relatively small number of abusers - vile as they be - cannot explain the fact that for every person who says they are Catholic in this country, there is one person who says “they used to be Catholic” in this country. And for every Catholic who comes to Church on Sunday, there are four who don’t. Those abusers don’t explain the fact that most of us don’t know our faith well enough to share it. They don’t explain how the Catholic Church went from a thriving religious family sixty years ago to a rotting corpse of a religion full of closing schools and empty Churches and senior clergy who clearly don’t believe that Jesus Christ is Lord.
And make no mistake, Jesus Christ IS Lord. In a decade or a century, the Church will be thriving again. We’ll be building new Churches - and not ugly bomb shelter looking things - big, beautiful Churches that will be filled with families who pray together and believe the teachings of Jesus. We’ll be building schools and orphanages and convents again.
It may even happen in our life times… But we can’t do that until we reject mediocrity. The Holy Spirit cannot and will not descend upon mediocrity. So long as we are led by unbelievers... So long as we are content to give God little... So long as we hide behind lawyers and protect reputations - we will continue to be an aging husk of the Church that forged Europe and defeated Islam and whose saints brought the world through the darkness of the fall of the Roman Empire to the heights of High Middle Ages when great Cathedrals were built in towns half the size of Tallulah and even the Black Plague didn’t shake people’s trust in God.
Yes, this Lent will be a time of soul searching. It will be a time of considering priorities. It will be a time of asking the Lord what we should do and how we should do it. It will be a time of echoing with the psalmist, “How long, O Lord, How long must we wait?” It will be a time of pleading, but also of trusting, because, after all, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of Everlasting life.
Calendar of Events
- Confessions every 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
Sunday Morning Catechism in the Hall after the 9:30a Mass unless otherwise indicated
Feb 24 Sunday Morning Catechism followed by First Communion class
- Feb 27 Wednesday Evening Catechism...Devotionals - The Rosary, Holy Water, Relics
- March 1 First Friday Devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus - 5:30 p.m.
- March 2 First Saturday Devotions to our Blessed Mother - Mass and Holy Hour - 8:30 a.m.
- March 3 First Sunday - Traditional Latin Mass - 12 noon
- March 3 Potluck Brunch celebrating Mardi Gras following Mass - First Quarter Social
- March 6 Ash Wednesday - Lent begins. Masses at Olive Branch and at Church.
For Your Information:
FIRST FRIDAY…MARCH 1...Holy Hour and Mass....5:30 p.m. ...make a special devotion to the Sacred Heart and attend first Friday devotions for nine consecutive months.
FIRST SATURDAY …MARCH 2 … Mass and Holy Hour … 8:30 a.m. Our Lady of Fatima called for special devotions to be offered on the first Saturday of each month. Father Ryan will offer Mass on the first Saturday of each month in the Church. All are welcomed and encouraged to attend.
FIRST SUNDAY...MARCH 3 ...Traditional Latin Mass, noon
FIRST QUARTER SOCIAL...next Sunday (March 3) will be our Mardi Gras Brunch following Sunday Mass. Plan to bring a dish and join us. The First Quarter (Jan, Feb, March) consisting of Margo Corulla and Darryl and Abby Ellerbee (co-chairs), Norman and Marie Ernst, Brian Johnson, Sidney and Mary Jane Johnson, Robbie and Tori Kivett, Ed Mills, Kathleen Mills, Teddy and Alyssa Oliver, Mike and Sue Rome, Jason Trichell, Mary Trichell, Levi Washington will give leadership to the event.
Our Return to the Lord
- Weekly Budget FY 2018-19 $1,917
- January Budget $7,668
- January Income $7,790
- January Expenses $8,837
- February Budget $7,668
- Collection February 16/17 $1,797
- February Income to Date $9,074
Stewardship Today’s Gospel has encouraging words for good stewards -- ”Give and it shall be given to you. For the measure you measure with will be measured back to you.” What encouragement to give generously of the resources entrusted to our care!
Special Collection next weekend (March 2/3) for the church in Central and Eastern Europe. This collection helps those rebuilding their lives in former Communist countries.
Mass Schedule & Intentions for the Coming Week
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Matt Farlow/Scott
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Deceased members of our Parish
- Mon NO MASS
- Tues NO MASS - Deanery Meeting
- Wed 5:30p In memory of Angela Lusk/Leoty
- Thurs 9:00a In memory of Rosa Gremshell Olive Branch
- Fri 5:30p In memory of Marie and John Johnson/family
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Sarah Phillips for birthday/Hodge
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Dead members of our Parish Family
ALTAR CANDLES this week are burning for the special intentions of Margo Corulla
Assistants at Holy Mass
- 2/23 5:30p
- Lector: P Gilfoil
- EMHCs: M Gilfoil & A Keene
- 2/24 9:30a
- Servers: A Collins & M Wood
- Lector: B Sullivan
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
- 3/2 5:30p
- Lector: MA Gilfoil
- EMHCs: A Farlow & L Bullard
- 3/3 9:30a
- Servers: EL & C Marsh
- Lector: K Collins
- EMHCs: K Collins & B Smith
- 3/9 5:30p
- Lector: M Rome
- EMHCs: P & M Gilfoil
- 3/10 9:30a
- Servers: P Collins & C Wood
- Lector: A Oliver
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
Let us Rejoice in the Lord!
Happy Birthday Kathleen Mills (March 3)
In Our Daily Prayers…
Our Holy Father Pope Francis and Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI; Bishop David Talley and Bishop-Emeritus Ronald Herzog, our President, Governor, Mayor and national, state and local elected representatives
Our parishioners who are sick, shut-in, or otherwise in need of our prayers: Pat Bullard, Connie Copes, Elizabeth Crothers, Susan Gilfoil, Josephine Hodge, Bill Kennedy, Dale & Louise Magoun, Kathleen Mills, Sue & Mike Rome and Delia Trichell
Those under full-time care: Frances Kennedy, Sue Scurria, Jim Farrell of Vicksburg, Sharon Hansen of Gonzales, Consuelo Marsh of Lake Providence, Jean Cantrell, Marie Cedotal, 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, Hattie Brown (Lancaster), Jerry Bullard, Colton Bullock (Farlow), Tommy and Gail Byrd, Richard Chappuis (Johnson), Kay Collins, Karen Cobb, Jackie Daniels (Lancaster), Carol Dipert (Rome), Carole Ducote (Lancaster), Joe Farlow, Mike Farlow, JoAnn Phillips Finn (Hodge), Thom Gilfoil, Charlotte Green, Kathy Garley Hanlon (Gilfoil), Cooper Harris (R Wood), Bo Holloway, Diane Johnson (Johnson), Jeannie Kivett, Ben Lenhart (G Marsh), LaLa Lopez (Hernandez), Michelle McGuire (Gilfoil), Mathieu family in Delhi (Wilks), Tobie McKowen (Wilks), Keith Melancon (Regan), Tucker Melancon (Johnson), Lindsay Mills, Debbie Pettis (Rome), Sam and Betty Phillips (Hodge), Wayne Pitre (Gilfoil), Lee and Tiffney Rome, Dianne W. Roper (Murphy), Linda Sanchez (Wilks), Walter Scott, Andy Sevier, Spencer and Mary Sevier, Beverly Sibile (Gilfoil), Theresa Thom (Rome), Elaine and James Trimble (Rome), Adam Triplett (Reynolds), Teresa Vidrine (Wilks), Conner and Hudson Wood (nephews of Bart)
Our collegiates: Norman Ernst, Anna Ginn, Josh Hall, Chris Hall (USMC), Matt Hall (USArmy), Nick Hall, Kathleen Oliver, Maddie Oliver, Bailey Rome, Blake Sullivan, Lori Sullivan, Brice Wood
Those Catholics residing at Christian Acres, Louisiana Transitional Center for Women, and our local Detention Centers and for their families and loved ones.
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.