From The Font
“Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain…”
There is a certain “cleanness” to our religion. The mess of this world is just a blink in the eye to the clean, tidy, pure, perfect, glimmery eternal bliss of Heaven. Our worship is ideally associated with beautiful robes, ethereal music and, if we’re lucky, a sermon that cuts through the gray unclarity of daily life with clear principles of morality and truth that just feel right. And, of course, bad people getting their comeuppance… To be entirely honest, that’s not wrong. Jesus promises a Heaven that Revelation describes as a city made as if from a large gemstone - clear and clean and beautiful and lit by His love. What’s more, He promises a foreshadowing of that here and now when He talks about the Fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5.
But that promise of an eternity free of the gray unclarity of daily life doesn’t change the fact that getting to that Heaven means bringing those clear and perfect principles to the gray unclarity of daily life. The Pharisees and scribes had the law. It was specific. It was clear. But rather than bring that clarity to the chaos of real life, they created a bubble around themselves. They hid their talents (c.f. Matthew 25) in the ground rather than risking them in the public square. They didn’t want to risk living real life with real faith.
That challenge wasn’t just for them - it’s for us as well. It’s easy to box up our faith and keep it comfortably in our hearts and away from the risk of living it for all to see. We may tell ourselves that the dirty world will damage our faith… And it might! Too much worldliness can damage our faith. But our faith may also start to clean up our dirty world. And we can be assured there’s nothing else that will. No job, no politician, no accomplishment, no LSU winning season, no amount of wealth or popularity will make the world less gray and dirty and unclear as allowing even a small bit of our faith - as much as a small mustard seed - to get into our dirty lives and start to take real effect...
Thoughts from Fr. Ryan
First, let’s make something clear… An artist or a painter may look at my vestments and call them salmon or peach or coral… But whatever the official name of the color, it is ROSE and not PINK. Let is be written on the hearts and minds of all who read these words, Amen! :) This Rose Sunday is about Joy. And that doesn’t really make sense in the middle of Lent. But if we look back in history, it fits.
Let’s go back to 1960 (and the previous 1000 years with it). From about 850 AD - 1960, Lent began on Ash Wednesday. Three weeks before, there was a mini-season called “Septuagesima.” That little mini-season was lent-like in that the vestments were purple, the alleluia and gloria were not sung and the glory be (of which the old Mass had about 12) was not said.
From Ash Wednesday to Good Friday, every single day - except Sundays, of course - were fasting days. That means one meal, no meat, no meat products and no meat broth. And that was the baseline. You still gave up something extra.
The last two weeks of Lent were called “Passiontide.” During that time, the statues and images in the Church were veiled and some other parts of the Mass were also suppressed. The Fifth Sunday of Lent was Passion Sunday which included the long reading of St. Matthew’s Gospel from the Last Supper to the Death of the Lord on the Cross.Then, the next Sunday was Palm Sunday which was also much longer than the usual Mass with a long blessing of the Palms before Mass and a dozen or so psalms that were chanted as a part of that. It also had a very long Gospel. Then came Holy Week with Spy Wednesday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil.
Lent - for most of the history of the Church - was a real deal, hard, penitential season. And so it makes sense in the middle of that to have a breather. Right in the middle of all of that penance and all of that self-awareness, the altar was decorated with flowers and the dark, purple robes were replaced with bright, rose ones. We were reminded - and we needed reminding - that we’re doing all this because the natural result of being with the Lord Jesus on the Cross is JOY and not sadness. When we take up our cross, joy and peace and patience and kindness and goodness and all of the Fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5) is what we expect to experience - even if our lives don’t look like a Hallmark movie. Rose Sunday was needed. It was a real rest in the middle of a real desert.
Nowadays, those 40 days of fasting have been reduced to 2 and many Catholics don’t take Good Friday seriously because it’s a spring day and an excuse to have a party. We don’t have the pre-lent season and we don’t fast and we don’t experience Lent as hard, so the idea of needing a rest in the middle of the desert is a bit more like having flowers on the altar makes us notice that we didn’t have flowers on the altar last weekend.
That doesn’t mean we don’t need the reminder of joy, but it does mean that we need to work to take Lent so seriously that we really do need it.
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
* April 5 Lenten Devotions - Mass and Stations of the Cross * April 13 Palm Saturday Bake Sale - Church Hall - 10 a.m. to noon * April 20 Easter Egg Hunt - Church grounds - 10 a.m.
For Your Information:
FIRST FRIDAY…APRIL 5 ...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 …APRIL 6 … 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...APRIL 7 ...Traditional Latin Mass, noon
PALM SATURDAY BAKE SALE...in the Church Hall on April 13. All are requested to assist with this event as it is the signature fund raising event for the Altar Society. There will be a list at the entrance of church for your convenience in listing what dishes you plan to provide. Please help spread the word of the event among your friends and co-workers.
HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE & ASSISTANTS…. April 18 Holy Thursday - Servers are Preston and Aidan Collins Lector Libby Bullard EMHC Prentiss & Blanche Wilks
April 19 Good Friday Stations of Cross and Adoration - Servers (Volunteers requested)
April 20 Holy Saturday - Servers are Carter Sullivan, Walker Sullivan, and H Ellerbee Readings Cathy VanderVieren and MaryAnne Gilfoil Lector Mike Rome EMHC Margaret & Pat Gilfoil
EASTER EGG HUNT….will be on Holy Saturday, April 20, at 10 a.m. on the church grounds. Stephenie Marsh and Kate Copes will give leadership to this event. Contact one of them to learn how you can help!
EASTER FLOWERS...envelopes are available at the entrance of church if you would like to contribute to the decorations and lilies for Holy Week and Easter. Pick up an envelope, indicate for whom you are donating and if it is In Honor or In Memory, and return in the collection basket.
Our Return to the Lord
- Weekly Budget FY 2018-19 $1,917
- February Budget $7,668
- February Income $10,845
- February Expenses $9,324
- March Budget $9,585
- Collection March 23/24 $1,740
- March Income to Date $ 8,683
Stewardship The stewardship message in the parable of the Prodigal Son is that it is never too late to become a good steward. Blessed is the elder brother who had been a good steward all along, but blessed, too, is the prodigal who had to lose all he had in order to understand the value of what he’d been given.
Special Collection this weekend (March 30/31)...for Catholic Relief Fund which provides food to the hungry, support for displaced refugees, and brings Christ’s love and mercy to all people here and abroad. Please give generously and help Jesus in disguise!
Mass Schedule & Intentions for the Coming Week
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Darryl Ellerbee (death)/family
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Deceased members of our Parish
- Mon NO MASS
- Tues 5:30p In memory of Joe Scurria/B&G Cox
- Wed 5:30p In memory of Father Ferre (anniv death) and in honor of Trey’s birth/Magoun
- Thurs 9:00a In memory of SeSe Holstead (birth)/family Olive Branch
- Fri 5:30p In memory of May DiTommaso
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Marie Phillips Michele/Weaver
- 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 Blanche Wilks
Assistants at Holy Mass
- 3/30 5:30p
- Lector: A Farlow
- EMHCs: P & B Wilks
- 3/31 9:30a
- Servers: EL & C Marsh
- Lector: B Sullivan
- EMHCs: K Collins & B Smith
- 4/6 5:30p
- Lector: L Bullard
- EMHCs: P & M Gilfoil
- 4/7 9:30a
- Servers: C Sullivan & M Wood
- Lector: K Collins
- EMHCs: B Smith & Volunteer
- 4/13 5:30p
- Lector: M Rome
- EMHCs: A Farlow & C VanderVieren
- 4/14 9:30a
- Servers: W Sullivan & C Wood
- Lectors: A Oliver, K Collins, A Keene
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
Let us Rejoice in the Lord!
Happy Birthday Harper Bedgood (April 2), Betty Smith (April 2), Carter Sullivan (April 2), Walker Sullivan (April 2), Henry Ellerbee (April 7), Ann Marie Marsh (April 8)
In Our Daily Prayers…
Our Holy Father Pope Francis and Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI; our Diocesan leaders, 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), Pam Amacker (Gilfoil), Jenna Faye Allen (Florence), Margaret Baker (Magoun), Marie Farlow Bellard, Hattie Brown (Lancaster), Jerry Bullard, Colton Bullock (Farlow), 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, Thomas Joseph O’Dowd (Army Ranger/Italy/M Scurria O’Dowd), 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.