Pastor’s Desk


 Saturday, Dec. 23rd – 4th Sunday of Advent – 5 pm and 7 pm  (Spanish)

Sunday, Dec. 24th – 7:30 am, 9 am, 10:30 am, and 12 noon (Spanish)

Christmas Carols – 9:30 pm

Monday, Dec. 25 – Christmas Day – 7:30 am, 9 am, 10:30 am, and 12 noon (Spanish)

The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph

Saturday, Dec. 30th – 5 pm and 7 pm (Spanish)

Sunday, Dec. 31st – 7:30 am, 9 am, 10:30 am and 12 noon (Spanish)

                           Monday, Jan. 1, 2024 – Holy Mother of God – 8 am Daily Mass                                                                                             (not a Holy Day of Obligation)

Dear Fellow Parishioners,

Earlier this week I went to the store to pick up a few things. When I was checking out, I saw a working man wearing a sweatshirt with the following words on his back: “PLUMBERS’ RATES. Minimum rate: $100. If You Watch: $150. If You Worked On It Before: $200. If You Tell Me How To Do The Repair: $250.”

Amusing enough but, on reflection, it is very much like prayer. Pray to God for help: $100. Anxiously Monitor God’s Response: $150. If You Tried To Fix It Without His Help: $200. If You Try to Tell God How to Fix It Now: $250.

All analogies, especially humorous ones, fall short of complete accuracy, but the basic point stands: the presupposition of prayer is trust, receptivity and acceptance. Put crudely, if you call a plumber, you let him or her do the job. That was the attitude with which Mary received the news of the birth of the Son of God: “Let it be done to me according to your Word.” Pre-guessing, or micro-managing, God’s responses to our prayers is a self-frustrating road.

Advent, in addition to being the time of preparation for the birth of Jesus, is also the season of maternity which, even apart from the context of Christian faith, echoes deeply within any emotionally healthy heart. Within three weeks, from December 8th to January 1st, we celebrate no fewer than four feasts marking divine and human maternity: Immaculate Conception (Dec. 8th), Our Lady of Guadalupe (Dec. 12th), the Feast of the Incarnation (Christmas) and the Feast of Mary, the Mother of God (Jan. 1st). Each of these feasts distinguishes and celebrates a particular aspect of Mary’s role as Mother and Intercessor.

I encourage you to join us as you are able in our Advent and Christmas liturgies, including our Remembrance Service on Monday, December 18th.

While we are at the beginning of the church year, we are approaching the end of the calendar year. I would like to acknowledge and thank those who, while not always able to attend Masses in person, still join us by video and continue to support our shared mission. I remember you often in my prayers, and encourage all our fellow parishioners to do the same. In addition to the prayer requests written in our Book of Intentions or announced at Mass, it is not always possible, for various reasons, to mention all prayer intentions by name, but you are never far from my personal Mass intentions. And just as we try to help local families with our Giving Trees, let us also help them with our prayers. The wider culture has already begun celebrating Christmas, but we still hold the hope of Advent right up to the moment of our Savior’s birth.


Fr. Bill Donahue

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