From The Font
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.”
The common wisdom of our time is that if we look within ourselves and follow our hearts and our dreams and our truest selves, we will find happiness and meaning and fulfillment and joy. We’re told that religion might be able to help with that looking-within, but it’s more likely to distract us from the true freedom that comes from being our best selves.
By extension, then, we don’t need to look to find the Lord, we just need to realize that He is within us. It doesn’t matter if that’s Jesus or Allah or Buddha or whatever…
The problem with that thinking, though, is that it just doesn’t prove to be true in real people. For every one person who has really found themselves and found “meaning within” there are a thousand people on instagram trying to convince everyone that their life is perfect. For every one person who finds genuine human happiness in atheism or humanism, there are thousands who go to bed lonely and depressed. It’s no accident that Jesus hides Himself. He hides His miracles in the Gospel and He hide Himself when He rises. He disguises Himself to the disciples on the road to Emmaeus and He disguises Himself to Mary Magdalene. Why?
Because we, as human beings, need to search. We need to recognize our need before we are capable of accepting the Lord. Just as we need to “find ourselves” and we like to chase after love in relationships, so we need to seek and to find the Truth about God.
Easy religion - which one theologian has called “cheap grace” - fails to satisfy. Bible religion is popular because it calls on folks to find Jesus in the Bible. Genuine Christianity is a holistic, full- self engaging search for Jesus and in that search, wonderfully, we find ourselves.
As Pope St. John Paul II wrote - “Jesus Christ, and He alone, fully reveals man to himself.” The illusion that freedom FROM religion somehow makes us happy is easily proven to be false - by whatever standard. But freedom FOR religion - searching - opens within us a genuine discovery of ourselves in relation to God and to the world!
Thoughts from Fr. Ryan
After a long and very late Lent in which all the flowers bloomed and the weather turned, we are finally finding what nature has been showing us that for every Winter there is a Spring and for every sorrow, there can be a joy. “All things work for the good of those who love the Lord.” I’m not talking about a Halmark movie or “Mama’s in a better place.” I’m talking about St. Francis of Assisi rejoicing to receive the painful wounds of Jesus in his own hands and feet. I’m talking about St. Ignatius of Antioch delighting to find out he’s going to be martyred. I’m talking about Pope St. John Paul thanking God for being shot on the Feast of our Lady… In some ways, I’m talking about being thankful that Notre Dame in Paris burned… It has generated a lot of discussion about what that building means. It’s caused a lot of vile folks to try to reduce Notre Dame to a work of art or of architecture… But it’s not. Notre Dame isn’t the Sistine Chapel, designed and painted by a hired worker. It’s the work of a thousand artists who were careful NOT to sign their names. They wanted to make their living faith permanent in glass and stone. That’s not art in the modern, narcissistic, “eye of the beholder” nonsense. That’s something fundamentally different.
Notre Dame, and indeed most of the great Medieval Cathedrals, were built without funding or blueprints. There were sketches and major designs, but for much of the work, the artisans simply agreed among themselves what would happen in a given section. They prayed. They went to Mass in the unfinished buildings. They confessed their sins. They believed. And that same faith was at work here in the US. Very poor immigrants from Ireland and Poland and Germany and France came to the US and built the most glorious buildings without capital campaigns or major donors. Artisans devoted their time and their best efforts to create something far more than modern art.
One commenter on Twitter noted that while Notre Dame de Paris can be restored with modern technology easily enough, unless the restorers recover the Faith that originally built it, it won’t last. Just look at the multitude of ugly, cheap looking modern Churches which costs as much as it would take to build copies of the great Cathedrals… People drive for hours to visit beautiful traditional Churches. They wait in line to visit the Mormon Cathedral in Salt Lake City. And even though we know that, we continue to build ugly, auditorium Churches which the architects are hoping will be featured in some useless magazine… Why? Because Faith is not an add-on - it’s an essential component of real art.
I believe that this discussion is going to help us see some lines being drawn between certain clergymen who want the modern dreck and many of the lay faithful who want to give God our very best… I think there’s a lot of good that God can do with something horrifying like the burning of Notre Dame just as He has already done innumerable good with something far more horrifying like the death of His own Son on the Cross for our salvation.
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
May 5 First Holy Communion - 9:30 a.m. Mass with a reception following in the Hall
- May 12 Mass honoring our high school Seniors - 9:30 a.m. Mass - reception following
For Your Information:
NO MASSES DURING THE COMING WEEK...as Father Ryan will be away until Saturday.
FIRST HOLY COMMUNION AND CROWNING OF MARY...will be May 5 at the 9:30 a.m. Mass followed by a Reception honoring our communicants in the Parish Hall. Plan to attend and celebrate with the families of Olivia Claire Copes, Evelyn Kivett, MaryKatherine Marsh, and Maura McCarty.
SENIORS RECOGNITION...will be May 12 at the 9:30 a.m.Mass followed by a Reception honoring our TA graduates, Aidan Collins and Emmy Lu Marsh...plan to attend and celebrate with them, their parents, Kendra and Dave and Ginny and Billy, and family!
Our Return to the Lord
- Weekly Budget FY 2018-19 $1,917
- March Budget $9,585
- March Income $10,113
- March Expenses $8,118
- April Budget $7,668
- Collection April 13/14 $3,974
- April Income to Date $5,955
Stewardship “In the second reading today, St Paul reminds the Colossians that they have been raised with Christ, exhorting them to ”be intent on the things above rather than on things of earth.” We, too, have been raised with Christ. Let us rejoice and be glad!
Mass Schedule & Intentions for the Coming Week
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Becky Lancaster
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Deceased members of our Parish
- Mon NO MASS
- Tues NO MASS Fr. Ryan away
- Wed NO MASS Fr. Ryan away
- Thurs NO MASS Fr. Ryan away
- Fri NO MASS Fr. Ryan away
- Sat 5:30p In memory of Jason Jumonville/Family
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Dead members of our Parish Family
ALTAR CANDLES this week are burning in memory of Becky Lancaster
Assistants at Holy Mass
- 4/20 5:30p
- Servers: C & W Sullivan, H Ellerbee
- Lector: C VanderVieren, MA Gilfoil, M Rome
- EMHCs: M & P Gilfoil
- 4/21 9:30a
- Servers: EL & C Marsh
- Lector: C & W Sullivan
- EMHCs: B Smith & K Collins
- 4/27 5:30p
- Lector: A Farlow
- EMHCs: L Bullard & A Keene
- 4/28 9:30a
- Servers: P Collins & M Wood
- Lector: D Ellerbee
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
Let us Rejoice in the Lord!
Happy Birthday Marie Ernst (April 21), Ann Keene (April 23), Lyn Faustina April 25), Norman Ernst II (April 27), Ginny Marsh (April 28)
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, Ed Mills, Kathleen Mills, Sue & Mike Rome and Delia Trichell
Those under full-time care: Frances Kennedy, Sue Scurria, Jim Farrell of Vicksburg, Sharon HaMnsen 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.