We welcome Msgr. Offutt to Holy Spirit Parish this weekend. He speaks to us about the need of the Diocesan “Forward in Faith” Campaign. Msgr. Offutt is the Vicar General for our diocese until the end of December when he will become the pastor of Holy Rosary Parish in Clinton, Mo. He has served our diocese well in his role as Chancellor and now Vicar General, but he looks forward to returning to being pastor in a small rural parish. Advent is a time of waiting. Msgr. Offutt knows about waiting.
As we wait for the Lord during this time of Advent, we are asked to also be prepared for the Lord’s coming. One of the ways we do that in our church is by celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation. There are a number of opportunities coming up for us to ask God’s forgiveness in this Sacrament:
- Sunday, December 8th, at St. John LaLande Parish in Blue Springs.
- Tuesday, December 10th, at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Harrisonville.
- Wednesday, December 11th, at St. Bridget Parish in Pleasant Hill.
- Sunday, December 15th, at Our Lady of Presentation in Lee’s Summit.
- Monday, December 16th, here at Holy Spirit Parish.
- Thursday, December 19th, at St. Robert Parish in Blue Springs.
Hear the cry of John the Baptist in today’s Gospel, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Keep in mind our children who are preparing to celebrate for the first time (on January 9th) the Sacrament of Reconciliation. On the bulletin boards by the gym there are pictures of the children who are preparing for this sacrament. What is asked of us is that we pray for them. Underneath their picture is a place for you to sign your name so that the children know we support them with our prayers.
The Vatican is doing a survey on challenges facing the family today. You are invited to take part in that survey. If you are interested in taking the survey or finding out more about it, you can go to the Diocesan web site http://www.diocese-kcsj.org. In the section called Current News you will see the Survey on Family and Marriage. Click on there and it will lead you to more information and a place to click on to take the survey. Your responses will be used to prepare for the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops called by Pope Francis in October, 2014. Our diocese is asking that the survey be completed by Dec. 11th, so you don’t have much time.
On Saturday, Nov. 30th, Fr. Steve Yavorsky led us on a morning of reflection to prepare us for the season of Advent. One of the prayers he shared with us asks Jesus to make us still. That is quite a tall order in this time when people can be so busy with all the preparations for Christmas. Even though it is asking a lot, I encourage you to take time to be still with the Lord. It is a great way to prepare for the coming of Christ.