A New Year
On behalf of Fr. Willig, our deacons, parish staff, and pastoral council, I’d like to wish all of you a very happy New Year. May the Lord abundantly bless you and your families in 2023. Certainly the Lord’s mercy will continue to guide, protect, and sustain all of us.
Thank you to everyone who helped make our Christmas celebrations so beautiful. In a special way I would like to thank Fr. Willig, our deacons, Christopher, the parish staff, musicians, lectors, altar servers, ushers, greeters, and decorators. So many people give of their time and skill to serve our larger parish community. Thank you very much and may the Lord bless you for your generosity.
This week we have our three holy hours to discern the patron of our family of parishes. The three we will be discerning are: the Holy Face of Jesus, St. John Paul II, and St. Peter and St. Paul. All three of these would make excellent patrons for us. Our patron saint will provide a blueprint for the direction and mission of our parishes. The particular charism, emphasis, and mission of our patron will be important for each of us. Hopefully you have read about each of these potential patrons in the bulletin.
The Holy Hours will be at the following times and locations:
– Thursday, January 5 at 7pm at St. Joseph
– Saturday, January 7 at 9am at St. John
– Sunday, January 8 at 11:30am at Immaculate Conception
During the Holy Hours there will be a short homily about each of the patrons and plenty of time to silently discern the Lord’s voice. At the end of the Holy Hour, each person present will be invited to vote for a patron. In the basement/hall, there will be activities for students Pre-K through 6th grade. They will have age appropriate activities to learn about the patron and vote. Everyone 7th grade and up is invited to the Church for the Holy Hour.
Finally I would like to end with an invitation to anyone, but mostly the men of our parishes. You may have heard of Exodus 90. It is a 90 day spiritual boot camp of prayer and fasting. The goal is to allow God to remove attachments so that we may be more intensely attached to Him. The title “Exodus” comes from the Book of Exodus during which the Lord took the Israelites into the wilderness so that their attachments could die and they could be more faithful to Him.
Going through Exodus 90 involves the following prayer activities: an hour of daily prayer, reading excerpts from the Book of Exodus. There are also brotherhood practices: daily check in with an accountability partner, this could be via text, a weekly small group meeting. Exodus 90 suggests a number of ascetical practices such as: cold showers, detox from social media, no eating between meals, avoiding sweets, getting 7 hours of sleep per night, daily exercise, and fasting twice a week.
For those who want to finish Exodus 90 at Easter, you could begin Exodus 90 on January 9. A few weeks ago, two men in the parish let me know that they’d be participating in Exodus 90. Last week I learned that a group of priests throughout the Archdiocese are participating in Exodus 90. I took this as a general nudge from the Lord to dive headlong into Exodus 90 this year. If you are interested in Exodus 90, please contact Nick Duff. His email address is in Nickelly.email@example.com.
Please pray for me and all the men who are making the Exodus journey. I’ll be offering up my penances for three intentions: 1. That our parishioners may grow in holiness and become saints 2. For the archbishop and priests of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. 3. For those in our parish boundaries who aren’t practicing the Catholic faith.
Have a blessed New Year and may God abundantly bless you and your family.
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Sean Wilson