March 12, 2023 | Parish Update
The Way to Satisfy Our Thirst, The Parish Mission, & The Stations of the Cross on the Hallow App and on Fridays
View the full posting at our Flocknote email (don’t forget to join so you can receive the update via email).
From Father James . . .
With the woman at the well, it is unclear why she has had five husbands. The detail is not included because it’s really not that important. Rather, we find her in the same situation that we all find ourselves in: she is thirsting for authentic love—she is thirsting for God.
Unfortunately, we live in a fallen world without a lot of authentic love. In fact, cheapened love is all around us! One of its simplest and most prevalent forms is immodesty. Modesty keeps at the forefront that ‘I am more than my body, I am more than how attractive I am to others, I am first and most importantly a beloved child of God.’ Immodesty, on the other hand, cheapens love. For if modesty is about “protect[ing] the intimate center of the person,” then immodesty must be the opposite. (CCC 2521) This is because immodesty trains us to treat others (and ourselves!) as objects for use rather than persons to be sacrificed for. Thus, the Catechism says, “Modesty protects the mystery of persons and their love.” (CCC 2522) It is an invitation to authentic love and to seeing the full dignity of the human person.
Matthew 5:8 reads, “Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God.” Note, then, that this passage not only refers to seeing God Himself but even seeing God in others! For, when we see others and ourselves in light of our being beloved children of God, then we can more readily treat them as such.
We can therefore see that ‘purity of heart’ extends to much more than just our sexuality. Soren Kierkegaard’s book, Purity of Heart is to Will One Thing makes just this point in an interesting way: if we want heaven, if we want peace, if we want a heart that is undivided and filled, then we must give our entire hearts to one thing and one thing alone: God.
“You shall love the Lord your God with ALL your heart!” (Deut 6:5) “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me.” (Matt 10:37) It seems harsh, it seems counterintuitive, but God needs to be number one—even before children and spouses, family and friends—not because He needs it, but because we need it.
Think about it. If God is my number one, I will love my spouse with the love of God. If God is my number one, I will be intimately acquainted with Beauty, Goodness, and Truth Himself and thus be able to lead my children to all those things. If God is my number one, I will know which path is best, which decision is most efficacious, and which lifestyle is the most meaningful.
Purity of heart is simplicity of heart—it is to will the one thing! It is the way to satisfy our thirst. The pure of heart will see God, and the pure of heart will find the fullness of love.
THIS COMING WEEK
Great job, parish family; Fr. Michael trimmed his beard!
- Great job parish family, Fr. Michael trimmed his beard because we raised $5,000! Let us aim to raise $8,000 so he can shave it all off for a worthy cause; to support our teens going on the Mission Trip this summer. (Did you know that the teens are individually responsible for the cost of the trip as well as the tools needed?) Donate online through Our Sunday Visitor platform here.
- Every moment we walk alongside a young person as they join in the work God is doing is an opportunity to affirm their purpose and celebrate their gifts. You have the opportunity to walk alongside our teens in a simple and good way by supporting them financially to offset the costs of the Misson Trip, and any dollar amount is helpful.
- The cost for the trip is $650 per teen, and this amount includes not only the participant fee for the workcamp but all of the other common costs like transportation, rooming, meals at the camp, the free day activity, and other associated community costs. Each teen is also responsible for bringing the tools.
- The teens will be working throughout the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan Workcamp to do various home repair projects for residents. They will demonstrate Jesus’ love and compassion in tangible ways, serving people in need while working on projects such as…
– Building wheelchair ramps and handrails
– Weatherizing homes and trailers
– Reconstructing sagging porches
– Significant painting projects
– Interior and exterior carpentry
– Other home repair projects that the homeowner cannot otherwise complete
- Please also keep our teens, parents, and volunteers in prayer, as they prepare for and go on the Mission Trip. In a special way, let us pray for our teens for God to bless their quest for purpose, joining them in prayer on their journey to discover what God is doing in their lives.
𝗧𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗸 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝘀𝗼 𝗺𝘂𝗰𝗵 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝘀𝘂𝗽𝗽𝗼𝗿𝘁.
Come Holy Spirit!
UPDATE on IL legislation against Waterleaf from Fr. James
THANK YOU! More than 8,000 witness slips were filed in opposition to HB 2463 compared with barely 2,000 for the proponents. The outpouring of prayers to support Waterleaf and the pushback against this attempt to eliminate pregnancy centers like Waterleaf was clearly successful since the bill did not even make it into discussion because of the overwhelming opposition! Praise God! The fight is certainly not over, but it is encouraging to see how much your assistance has helped!—whether in filling out a witness slip or offering prayers and fasts.
We most likely will be asking you to sign witness slips again for the identical Senate bill, SB 1909. In the meantime, THANK YOU, and keep up the prayers!
Fr. James Guarascio
St. Peregrine Prayer Service on Tuesday 3/14
- The monthly prayer service will be on Tuesday, 3/14th at 7pm (after the 6:30pm Mass) in the church led by Deacon Tony Leazzo. Come together to support one another in prayer and presence.
- St. Peregrine is the patron saint of the sick, especially those experiencing cancer, serious illness, or chronic illness. Anyone experiencing physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual health concerns would benefit from attending the prayer service. There will be time after the service to venerate the relic of St. Peregrine and pray for your personal needs or intentions.
Consuming Fire on Tuesday 3/14
- All young adults are invited to join the Consuming Fire Young Adult Community. This group meets every Tuesday from 7pm to 8:30pm. We gather to eat, pray, and ‘do life together’!
- From the weekly Tuesday gatherings to additional social gatherings (hiking, dinner at someone’s home or at a restaurant, movie nights, adoration, rosary walks), there are so many good reasons to join this fun, and awesome group! Want more information? Sign up HERE
Chosen Catholic Bible Study on Tuesday 3/14
- The Catholic Bible Study on The Chosen will host the Hallow App co-founder as he talks about the App’s Lenten offering leading up to Holy Week of a deeper dive into “The Stations of the Cross with Jonathan Roumie and Jim Caviziel” on the Hallow App.
- Sign up now for this free event. The presentation will start at 7pm with a free dinner, followed by assisting with how to download the App and gain full and free access through the end of Easter.
Catholic Charities Mobile Food Pantry on Wednesday 3/15
- This month’s Mobile Food Pantry is on Weds 3/15th from 4:30pm to 6pm in the parking lot at OLM. Don’t forget to share the Our Lady of Mercy social media posting on your network; you never know who among your network is in need of food. (Here are shareable links to an Instagram post, Facebook post).
- The Catholic Charities, Diocese of Joliet Mobile Food Pantry delivers healthy food (meat, produce, and non-perishable items) to people in need. No identification or information will be required or collected. This event is open to anyone in need of food! Mobile Food Pantries use a “drive-thru” method to distribute food during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please clear space in your trunk or backseat so volunteers can load boxes of food directly into your vehicle. Catholic Charities helps people of all faiths and beliefs. Mobile Food Pantries take place rain or shine!
The Rescue Project on Thursday 3/16
- We head into Week 4 on our parish-wide journey at The Rescue Project (TRP), where the talk titled “It Gets Worse” helps us to understand what the dire predicament every single human person is in and why we need someone to rescue us.
- Thus far, a fully packed gym of TRP Participants experiencing the gospel surrounded by food, conversation and prayer have been increasingly transformative. Please keep them and the team in your lenten prayers. You can view the recap of week 1 and week 2 on our social media platforms!
Stations of the Cross on Friday 3/17
- Every Friday in Lent, we journey together through the Stations of the Cross. Come join us!
12 pm • Stations of the Cross in Spanish
7 pm • Stations of the Cross in English
Lenten Fish Dinner on Friday 3/17
- Have a fish dinner to support our teens going on the Mission Trip on Friday 3/17 from 5:30pm to 8:30pm.
- Purchase your meal tickets at this link soon for there are limited meal quantities.
- Meals are $15 each which includes potatoes, dinner roll, dessert and beverage (soda or water). Meal choices are:
- Jumbo Shrimp (6 pieces)
- Cod (Fried)
- Salmon (6 oz)
- Purchase your meals at the Friday 3/17 Meal Purchase Link
Lenten Movie Night on Love & Mercy 3/17
- Immediately after the Stations of the Cross on 3/17 is the Lenten Movie Night on “Love and Mercy: Faustina” in room 211 at 7pm.
- Connect with Bill Troller for questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
- This is a great way to understand the Divine Mercy movement, how it was born, and how it was spread. The film also reveals new information from scientific analyses of the image of the Divine Mercy as it compares to the Shroud of Turin, proving St. Faustina did indeed see Christ.
Weekly Praying for Priests
- A prayer group has been praying for priests in front of the Blessed Sacrament weekly for over a year now, as well as on First Fridays. With Lent approaching, these prayer gatherings could be an offering of prayer/sacrifice. Even if you can’t join the group inside the church, you can pray wherever you are at during the times below.
- Here are the days/hours:Wednesdays at 10:30am – Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy with meditations for priests, Thursdays at 12:30pm – Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy with meditations for priests,First Friday of the month following 12pm Mass – Stations of the Cross with meditations for priests in the narthex.
Restore weekly confidential meetings
- Restore is a ministry that accompanies men so as to win the battle against the struggles of living a lust-free life.
- The ministry meets at a weekly (anonymous) meeting where men lean on each other for support and accountability and share ideas about strengthening their resolve to stay on God’s path of chastity. All men are welcome, whether you have been free of the addiction for many years or struggle with it every single day. Though the meetings are weekly, at the last weekly meeting of the month, men are guided by a licensed Catholic therapist. If you are ready to start breaking free from the struggles of living chastely and want to Restore your life email Restore.email@example.com to find out more information on when and where we meet or call 331-684-7415.
Lenten Resources Page
- To accompany you on your Lenten journey, the Lenten Resources page has the Lent Schedule (such as Confession times, Easter Egg Hunt, Friday Fish Dinners) and Holy Week Schedule, as well as Lenten Guidelines, FAQs, Homilies of the Fathers and prayerful suggestions for deepening your relationship with Jesus through Prayer, fasting, and Almsgiving.
- Pick up a Lenten Flyer to place on your fridge if you didn’t get one yet; it has all our Lenten Offerings on there; you can also view it here.
Arts & Environment Accompaniment During Lent
- We are blessed at Our Lady of Mercy by the blessing of the creative talent of our Arts & Environment team. With each liturgical season, this amazing team of volunteers (Annie Clark, Jeanne Daill, Linda Eickhoff, Betsy Utterback just to name several) led by Marty Kadziela transforms our beautiful church and surrounding spaces so we can enter the liturgical season with our visual senses accompanied.
- In this liturgical season, among the artfully placed lenten visual inspirations, the Arts & Environment team has set the 7 Last Words of Jesus on the Cross adorning the church’s walls beneath each wall sconce light fixture. We invite you to use these lenten visuals to accompany you as you journey through Lent with Jesus. Reflections are also noted below; each picture below points you to a YouTube reflection. (We will post the rest in the next parish update).
The Father already knows what the Son is thinking, but through these words, the Father and Son invite us into their thinking. They make us aware that forgiveness is offered to us through this sacrifice, and that through forgiveness, we are freed from the sin and lies that trap us.
2. Today you will be with me in paradise. Luke 23:43
The penitent thief acknowledged his guilt and wickedness and was welcomed by Christ. We, too, can find salvation if we acknowledge our sinfulness.
Mundelein Seminary (where Fr. Michael and Fr. James attended) Explore the Priesthood Weekend 3/17 through 3/19
- All interested men 18 years and older are invited to explore a weekend at one of the top seminary universities from 3/17 through 3/19!
- Let the men in your life know. Proceed to this link for details and registration for this free weekend.
St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP) truck 3/18 & 3/19
- 𝗔 𝗦𝗽𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗖𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗼𝗿 𝗮 𝗦𝗽𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗖𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗼𝗳 𝗖𝗹𝗼𝘀𝗲𝘁𝘀! The St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP) truck will be in our parking lot on 3/18 and 3/19 for our clothing drive. 𝗖𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗿 𝗼𝘂𝘁 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗰𝗹𝗼𝘀𝗲𝘁𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗮 𝗴𝗼𝗼𝗱 𝗰𝗮𝘂𝘀𝗲 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗿𝗲-𝗽𝘂𝗿𝗽𝗼𝘀𝗲 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗺𝘀 𝗯𝘆 𝗱𝗼𝗻𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗺 𝘁𝗼 𝗦𝘁. 𝗩𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗗𝗲 𝗣𝗮𝘂𝗹. Your donated items are sold at reasonable prices at thrift shops so that needy families can shop with dignity. The sale proceeds from the thrift shops go into a general assistance fund where parishes source help for families needing assistance with rent, mortgage, or utility assistance.
Second collection for Catholic Relief Services on 3/19
- Dear Friends,
Our diocese will take up the annual second collection for Catholic Relief Services on March 19, and it could not come at a more fortunate time.
As the arm of the Catholic Church that helps the poor and vulnerable overseas, Catholic Relief Services plays a vital role during emergencies such as the earthquakes that occurred last month in Turkey and Syria. Catholic Relief Services immediately contacted its partners in those countries to provide safe shelter for individuals and families, and access to food, clean water and hygiene supplies.
Your support of Catholic Relief Services funds organizations dedicated to aiding people affected by war and natural disasters, migrants and refugees in need of material and legal assistance, and people worldwide whose livelihoods are impacted by changing political and environmental conditions.
This is life-saving work. Thank you for your support of our neighbors overseas with your donation to the humanitarian mission of Catholic Relief Services.
Paz y bien,
Most Reverend Ronald A. Hicks, Bishop of Joliet
Parish Mission on 3/20 and 3/21
- Did you save the date for our powerful Parish Mission held from 7pm to 8:30pm on Monday, 3/20th, and Tuesday, 3/21st.
- Mission Night 1 Your True Identity and Mission Night 2 What is this thing we call the heart?
- Hosted by Fr. Matthew Alexander, formation and spiritual director at St. John Vianney Seminary since 2019. Fr. Alexander previously served as the associate pastor of St. Mary of the Annunciation Catholic Church in Mundelein and as a formator at St. Joseph College Seminary in Chicago. In 2010, Fr. Alexander received his undergraduate degree in Philosophy at Franciscan University in Steubenville, OH, and, in 2017, he completed his Licentiate in Sacred Theology from Mundelein Seminary.Fr Matthew is from the Chicagoland area and has greatly impacted Fr. Michael in his own use of the one wheel. Fr. Matthew has strong opinions of deep-dish pizza and loves to play Ultimate Frisbee, among other sports, reading, listening to music, and camping. Fr. Matthew has been trained in the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola and continues to teach classes at the seminary on how to pray and pay attention to movements of the heart.
Donuts & Coffee Sunday 3/28
- Stop by the PLC after the 8am and 10am Masses on 3/28th for yummy Donuts, good Coffee & wonderful Fellowship.
Confessions on 3/27 through 3/31
- You can find the Lenten Confession schedule on our Lent Resource page. Please note that in addition to the regular Confession times we have, additional opportunities for Confessions are from Monday 3/27 through Friday 3/31, from 7pm to 8:30pm.
Palm Weaving Workshop to Help Decorate our Church 3/27 through 3/30
- Come out and weave palms to help us decorate our church for Palm Sunday and Holy Week on any of the following days. The Arts and Environment team will give easy-to-follow instructions on how to weave the palms.
- Monday 3/27 from 7pm to 9pm in Room 114.
- Wednesday 3/29 from 10am to 12pm in Room 114.
- Thursday 3/30 from 7pm to 9pm in Room 114.
Divine Mercy Seminar on 3/28 and 3/29
- Discover “The Extraordinary Graces and Gifts of the Divine Mercy devotion” by attending our special Divine Mercy seminars held in room 208 on Tuesday, 3/28, at 9am or Wednesday, 3/29, at 7pm.
- A closing highlight of the seminar will be a group recitation of the Chaplet. Pamphlets with the Chaplet and Novena will be available. No registration needed, but be sure to bring your Rosary!
- For more information, connect with Bill Troller at (630) 585-1865 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lenten Themed MAGNIFY 3/29
- There will be additional priests to hear Confessions at the Lenten-themed MAGNIFY! Please be sure to save 3/29th on your lenten spiritual calendar because, indeed, it is because of God’s infinite love for us that we are encouraged to make use of the sacrament of Penance; it is in this sacrament that we release the past to God’s mercy, the present to His love, and the future to His providence.
- In addition to Confessions, there is Prayer Ministry, Adoration Praise and Worship, and Scriptural Reflection.
Knights of Columbus Easter Egg Hunt on 4/1
- The Knights of Columbus are hosting an Easter Egg Hunt for kids age 0-10 on Saturday, 4/1st at 10am with the Egg Hunt starting at 10:30am it will be held in the PLC. Please bring your Easter basket or a bag to hold all the eggs you find. Maybe even the Easter Bunny will stop in for some fun. Hope to see everyone there!
Sign Up for World Youth Day by 4/1
- Sign up below by 4/1st for the World Youth Day Pilgrimage to Lisbon, Portugal, it will be an experience of a lifetime for youth 18 and older!
- The Consuming Fire Young Adult Grow Group is looking to join the Joliet Diocese on a Pilgrimage to Lisbon, Portugal for World Youth Day 2023 from July 29 to August 7. Come and join them! This includes an optional pre-tour to Madrid from July 25 to 29. Proceed here for further details.
The Lenten Resource Page has the Holy Week Schedule 4/2 thru 4/9
- Proceed to the Lenten Resource Page for the Holy Week Schedule.
- Are you hosting Easter this year? If so, don’t forget to share the Easter Vigil (the most beautiful liturgy in our faith) and the Easter Mass times with your family and friends you will have over.
- We will also post the rest of the schedule at the next parish update.
Jeremiah Day at Mundelein Seminary 4/15
- For young men in 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th Grade is your answer “Yes” to any of the following questions? If so, then Jeremiah Day is for you!
- Do you often feel close to God?
- Do you try to do the right thing?
- Do you like helping other people?
- Are you a good leader?
- Do you like to learn new things?
- For further details and registration, proceed to this link!
Feast of Divine Mercy 4/16
- Save the date for the celebration of the Divine Mercy Feast Day on Sunday, 4/16 at 2pm! More details to follow.
Knights of Columbus Robert H. Weaver Scholarship Application Submit by 6/17
- Calling all High School Seniors at Our Lady of Mercy, applications for the 2023 Robert H Weaver Knights of Columbus College Scholarship program are now being accepted. A total of $2,000 will be awarded to students graduating from High School in 2023 and attending a 2 or 4-year University program starting in the fall of 2023. Awards will be made in July. Good luck to all applicants.
- All applications must be submitted no later than Saturday, 6/17th @ 4pm.
- Proceed to this link for application details, and requirements. For any questions please reach out to Jeff LeRoy, Grand Knight email@example.com.
Go on a Pilgrimage with Father James 6/5 thru 6/17
- Father James will be leading a Great Shrines of France Pilgrimage June 5-17, 2023 with Father James Join him as he leads pilgrims and explores France’s beautiful Catholic Shrines on this cross-country Pilgrimage. From small villages in the South of France to Paris, one of the greatest cities in the world, France is sure to take your breath away. On this Pilgrimage, you will see magnificent Shrines and Churches and learn of the lives of; St. Bernadette, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Veronica and Zaccheus, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, St. Therese of Lisieux, and St. Catherine Labourne. Don’t miss this incredible tour highlighting the Best Shrines in France.
- Father James is looking forward to answering any questions you may have email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can also check out details of the pilgrimage at this link.
Teen Mission Trip 7/19 thru 7/15
- High School Teens are invited to attend our Mission Trip to Grand Rapids, Michigan on Sunday-Saturday, July 9-15, 2023. This coming summer, the Our Lady of Mercy youth ministry will be traveling to MI to do service work for those in need.
- Sign up now for this life-changing encounter! Proceed here for further details.
World Youth Day 7/29 thru 8/7
- The Consuming Fire Young Adult Grow Group is looking to join the Joliet Diocese on a Pilgrimage to Lisbon, Portugal for World Youth Day 2023 from July 29 to August 7. Come and join them! This includes an optional pre-tour to Madrid from July 25 to 29. Proceed here for further details.
Health Updates on Father Don
- Please continue to keep Father Don in your prayers. To keep updated on how he is doing, please check the following CaringBridge website.
Bishop Hick’s Monthly Column
- Bishop Hicks’ monthly column for February is titled “Feeding the hungry through our ministries.”Read his insightful column HERE.
- From time to time, there are phishing (SCAM) emails going out to members of the parish and staff claiming to be Father Michael.
Please note that Father Michael and Father James DO NOT send texts or emails asking for money or gift cards. If you receive a message appearing to be from Father Michael or Father James, please discard it, (any email that does not have “olmercy.com” is a fake email) and DO NOT SEND ANY ELECTRONIC MONETARY AID. No one on the staff will personally ask for money in whatever form (gift cards etc). If someone sends you a private message, asking for a donation of sorts, it’s undoubtedly a fake account. Please keep praying for us, and God bless you!
Do you have a story to share of your time with Jesus in the Eucharist?
- In the Eucharist, Jesus wants to remind you that you are never alone, that He is with you. In your brokenness, sorrows, and frustrations, He is with you. In everything you face—when you’re tired, ready to give up, hanging on by a thread, Jesus says to you, “I AM HERE.”
- If you have experienced the above with Jesus, we invite you to share your story so as to inspire others to spend time with Jesus in the Eucharist, and to go to Holy Mass. Allow your story to be the vessel that can reach that person who Jesus is drawing to Himself more closely, especially those who are going through a tough time right now. Let us take part in the National Eucharistic Revival in a tangible way; come and share your story of your encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist. Connect with email@example.com to share your encounter.
Our Lady of Mercy Garden of Hope, Love & Mercy
- The Justice & Peace Ministry, which has constructed a Community Garden on Our Lady of Mercy parish grounds and provided fresh produce over the past few months has had a fruitful season and looks forward to expanding in 2023. Produce from the garden has been donated to local organizations such as the Marie Wilkinson Food Pantry and Hesed House. Late-season plantings are still producing vegetables and herbs. The faithful volunteers have been pleased with the success of this very worthy cause. If you have a green thumb or wish to participate in the preparation and planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting in early spring and throughout the 2023 growing season, please contact Chris at 631-561-9722 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Ida at 630-605-6038 or email@example.com.
Did You Know We Have a Parish School?
- All Saints Catholic Academy (ASCA) located at 1155 Aurora Ave, Naperville is our parish school!
- Are you a parent with preschool, elementary, and middle school-aged children struggling with the antithetical Christian values the government schools are indoctrinating the children who attend government schools? You’re not alone.
- Join a growing number of OLM parents who have made the movement! Consider connecting with some of the families who have made the move from sending their child(ren) to public school to All Saints Catholic Academy.
- Connect with Patty Bajek at (630) 961-6125, or firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest and schedule a personalized tour. Or peruse their website to explore your interest.
- Thank you for your support of our clothing drive. Your clothing donation, as well as your financial donations throughout the year, allows us to help our parishioners and neighbors in need. In 2022, we provided assistance to 72 households, helping 185 men, women and children to remain in their homes or apartments in time of financial need.
- The ministry is always looking for volunteers to join our St. Vincent de Paul Society in assisting our neighbors in need. If you would like to volunteer or learn more, send an email to email@example.com with your name and contact information.
- Check out the weekly Bulletin located here.
For the Hispanic Community
- Please proceed here for the OLM Hispanic Ministry’s upcoming events and resources.
Continúe aquí para conocer los próximos eventos y recursos del Ministerio Hispano de OLM.
- There will be Stations of the Cross in Spanish every 2nd Wednesday of the month after the 12pm Mass.
A partir de la próxima semana, habrá Estaciones de la Cruz en español cada segundo miércoles del mes después de la misa de las 12 pm.
A Note from the Intercessory Prayer Ministry
- How can we pray for you today?
There are times when life is overwhelming when all we have is questions. In those moments, hope can feel far away. The great thing about prayer is that it shifts our perspective toward the One who stands ready to listen. No matter what you’re facing, we’d love to pray with you. Submit your prayer requests at this link
- Prayer Ministry takes place monthly at MAGNIFY and on the last weekend of the month Mass times. Prayer ministry is an opportunity for those in need of physical, emotional, or spiritual healing or with a specific intention. Come as an individual, as a couple, or as. a family and receive prayer for yourself or request prayers for someone in need. Listen and receive the prayers while being open to the Holy Spirit’s movement. Trained prayer ministers are available.
Have you downloaded our myParish App yet?
- If you haven’t done so, we encourage you to download the Our Lady of Mercy app, available to download for iPhone and Android smartphones. Or text APP to 88202 to download.
- Stay connected with our parish throughout the week with instant notifications, an easy-to-access event calendar, and the ability to quickly reply to or share messages via Facebook or Twitter. Also enjoy a bunch of additional features like prayers, daily readings, helpful reminders to silence your phone before Mass or Confession, and much more.
OSV Giving Link Update
- Our online giving link has been updated by our provider (OSV), please be sure to update your bookmark, below is the link.
- The myParish App “Giving” button has been updated. Don’t have the myParish App yet? Text APP to 88202 to download! Receive this update, instant news, and get access to the parish calendar, daily readings, and Confession guide.
Grow Groups | We continue to launch Grow Groups, one group at a time.
Connect with firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions.
A MOTHER’S HEART GROW GROUP
Mission. A Mother’s Heart is a group for Catholic mothers with children ages 0-11 who are seeking to journey with other like-minded women of faith. Following the example of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, we strive to imitate her “little way” of growing in holiness through the lenses of motherhood and family.
Website. Proceed here for details.
Meets. Thursdays twice a month. For any of the following: book chats, podcast discussions, “Mom’s Night Out”, community service projects, fellowship, playgroups, prayer.
Connect. Reach out to Lydia Schmitt email@example.com for any questions.
CONSUMING FIRE YOUNG ADULT GROW GROUP
Mission. This group exists to grow a community that inspires and forms the young adult generation to be saints.
Website. Proceed here for details.
Meets. Tuesdays @ 7pm and twice a month for social gatherings.
Connect. Reach out to Matt Kubanda and Mary Rysavy firstname.lastname@example.org
World Youth Day 2023. The Consuming Fire Young Adult Grow Group is looking to join the Joliet Diocese on a Pilgrimage to Lisbon, Portugal for World Youth Day 2023 from July 29 to August 7. This includes an optional pre-tour to Madrid from July 25 to 29. Proceed here for further details.
SALT AND LIGHT GROW GROUP
Mission. “Encounter/Grow/Witness” is the threefold dimension of the Christian life. Once we encounter Jesus, we are then called to grow daily as His disciples. Grow Groups are one way Our Lady of Mercy is responding to our missionary identity where we are called to help parishioners grow continually in discipleship.
Website. Proceed here for details.
Meets. Wednesdays 7pm to 8:30pm
Connect. For more information, connect with Bob Maxwell at email@example.com or 630-962-8464
VINE & BRANCHES GROW GROUP
Mission. Vine & Branches is a group at Our Lady of Mercy that offers support and belonging to individuals of any age or faith who are divorced or separated on the way to divorce.
Website.Proceed here for details
Meets. Wednesdays @ 7pm with social gatherings.
Connect. The group leaders are looking forward to hearing from you, please don’t hesitate to reach out to them.
Kim Harris firstname.lastname@example.org
Mary LoGalbo email@example.com
John Frederick firstname.lastname@example.org
Jim Marks email@example.com
GROW YOUR FAITH
FREE ONLINE RESOURCES In this section, you will find free conferences, webinars, and studies that you can freely take part in that can grow your faith.
EUCHARIST: THE WORK OF OUR REDEMPTION 2/23 – 3/23
Hosted by the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions, this weekly free Lenten Webinar will be held live on Thursdays from 2/23rd through 3/23rd at 12pm. This 5-part Lenten series explore the Mass presented by the nation’s most respected theologians and liturgists. They will offer not merely an exploration of the elements of the Mass but will reflect on its rich theology and identify implications for pastoral practice. Details and registration are found here.
FORMED.ORG Diving into the beauty of the Faith has never been easier: at home, on the go, or from any internet-connected device. Discover thousands of books, audio talks, movies, documentaries, and studies… there is something for every member of the family to help them grow closer to Christ and His Church
- Visit http://signup.formed.org/
- Enter our parish zip or name
- Enter your name and email
Check out our “Eucharist Resources” page to help us understand deeply the centrality of the Eucharist in our lives.
AMEN – CATHOLIC MEDITATION APP
From Augustine Institute comes this NEW AND FREE Catholic prayer app that inspires your daily conversation with God through faithful meditations and nourishing Scripture. There is also Family Content: Enjoy and share family-favorite audio from the series Brother Francis and the Jesus Stories. Please enjoy this latest offering from the Augustine Institute.
HALLOW – A CATHOLIC PRAYER & MEDITATION APP
Hallow is a Catholic prayer & meditation app that helps users deepen their relationship with God through contemplative prayer and strengthen one’s mental health in the process. Easy-to-use, audio-guided sessions anywhere from 1 to 60 minutes long. Pray your own way with a personalized prayer plan pulling from 3,000+ unique sessions including the Lectio Divina on the Daily Gospel, Rosary, Examen, Night Prayer, Calm & Humility “Praylists” and much more. Hallow Light is free. Hallow Plus is $5 per month ($60 per year). Sign up for either one here.
WORD ON FIRE
Explore the goodness, truth, and beauty of the faith!Did you know that you have complete access to Bishop Barron’s Word on Fire ENGAGE video library! Check out this link to watch any of the videos whenever you want without ever having to login.
Not sure where to start? How about checking out the short 5 episode series on The Eucharist This fresh look at the Eucharist brings to light its reality as sacred meal, the sacrifice necessary for communion with God, and the real presence of Christ.
BLESSED IS SHE
Blessed is She is a sisterhood of women who want to grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ through their Catholic faith. They create beautiful and accessible resources, products, and experiences to deepen prayer and foster community, both online and in person.
THE CATHOLIC GENTLEMAN
Founded in 2013, The Catholic Gentleman has become one of the most recognizable online men’s apostolate. Each week hundreds of thousands of men around the world visit our site for the insightful articles and the highest-quality products designed to encourage a life of authentic manhood. Their mission: To inspire men to holiness
Looking for authentically Catholic content for men? Look no further than HeroicMen.com—the all-new, 100% FREE Catholic streaming platform for men.
Learn about your faith from today’s best Catholic speakers—and do it all from the convenience of home. Stream-on-demand from your phone or tablet, too, for quality Catholic content on the go. Get it all—for FREE – at HeroicMen.com
AQUINAS 101 FREE COURSES
Have you wanted to get to know St. Thomas Aquinas and his writings more so as to grow closer to Jesus? Sign up for any of the short and free courses at Aquinas 101 a project of the Thomistic Institute seeks to promote understanding of the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas, the eminent 13th-century philosopher, and theologian.
Aquinas is a masterful interpreter of reality. His writings assist us in answering perennial questions on topics like God, man, the natural world, law, and morality, and questions of special relevance to our time like the relationship between modern science and faith or pursuing happiness in the digital era.
PINTS WITH AQUINAS
Matt Fradd’s Pints with Aquinas is an online Catholic community of faith and truth… and maybe a pint or two. Check it out for long-form discussions, healthy debates, and teachings on the Catholic faith.
If you have physical, mental, emotional or spiritual health concerns or questions about end-of-life issues, funeral planning, journeying through grief, caregiving for a loved one or are homebound, please contact Jolene LeRoy RN Parish Nurse and Director of Pastoral Care for support and resources at firstname.lastname@example.org or 331-707-5380.
Do you find yourself struggling in overcoming your battle with pornography? Restore is a weekly (anonymous) meeting where men lean on each other for support and accountability and share ideas about strengthening our resolve to stay on God’s path of chastity. All men are welcome, whether you have been free of pornography addiction for many years or struggle with it every single day.If you are ready to start breaking free from the grips of pornography and want to Restore your life, email us at Restore.email@example.com to find out more information on when and where we meet or call 331-684-7415. Check out the website for FAQs and further details. Be encouraged; check out this Testimony.
GRIEF SUPPORT MINISTRY
If you are experiencing grief and would like to join others for a time of sharing stories, tears and laughter, prayer, and moving forward in hope – please come on Monday, June 27 from 11am to 1pm in the Ministry Room located in the church. There is no registration. This is an opportunity to receive support and understanding during your grief journey. If you have questions, please call Jolene LeRoy RN Parish Nurse and Director of Pastoral Care at 331-707-5380.
PREVIOUS Messages from. . .
From Father Michael 3/5/2023
I remember shortly after being ordained, I decided that my Lenten sacrifice was going to be giving up adult beverages. I don’t drink all too often, but it was still a sacrifice I thought was worthy to give over to the Lord. Ash Wednesday came and the following weekend was a big St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the town. I went to the parade; seeing parishioners in their festive green gear and I visited houses in the midst of the all day celebration. A simple question was asked, “Father, can I get you a drink?” You would think that my keen memory would remember the sacrifices I was going to make 3 days ago; but I forgot and I gladly said, “Yes”. It wasn’t until that night when I got back to the Rectory that I realized, only 3 days into Lent and I already failed in my Lenten resolve. It was a humbling experience, but another opportunity to join the patriarchs and apostles, and ask the Lord for his unending mercy!
The story of Abram (Abraham) is a story of salvation history and example of God’s patience. The Lord even in the midst of many of Abram’s failure never removed God’s desire to be with His people. Abram was promised great things; a great nation, a great name (dynasty), and a worldwide blessing. But there was a requirement that we missed; he had to leave his kin behind. If you were to read one line past our first reading, you would discover he took his nephew Lot. Throughout Abram/ Abraham’s story, he falls short many times failing to give a complete surrender to the Lord; yet the Lord is kind and merciful.
This is no different for the Apostles and those who follow the Lord. The season of Lent is a season of repentance, turning back to the Lord. Let us ask the Lord for that continued gift to seek his mercy without end. No matter how many times we fall.
“Christian holiness does not mean being sinless, but rather it means struggling not to give in and always getting up after every fall. Holiness does not stem so much from the effort of man’s will, as from the effort to never restrict the action of grace in one’s own soul, and to be, moreover, grace’s humble ‘partner.'” ~ Pope St. JPII
From Father James 2/26/2023
Perhaps you remember some of my subtle comments from my last Sunday homily, as well as my last article where I quoted from St. Justin Martyr, writing in AD 151: “We call this food Eucharist, and no one else is permitted to partake of it, except one who believes our teaching to be true and who has been washed in the washing which is for the remission of sins and for regeneration and is thereby living as Christ enjoined.” At every funeral and wedding I make a similar announcement: “If you are Catholic and properly prepared to receive Communion this day—which means you’ve been to confession within the last year—we’ll form two lines…If you’re not Catholic, I invite you to receive a blessing by crossing your arms like so because receiving Communion in our faith tradition is an outward profession of the Catholic faith and an acceptance of everything the Church teaches as being true. Thank you for respecting our religion!” Why say such a thing? Isn’t it exclusive?
Well, yes, yes it is, but with good reason. First of all, I don’t want anyone who doesn’t actually believe Church teaching to unconsciously outwardly profess what they don’t actually believe! For many Protestants, communion is an expression of welcoming and loving one’s neighbor no matter who they are. For Catholics, Communion is just that: a consummation of communion with Jesus and His Body, His Bride, our Mother, the Church. Thus, if one isn’t actually in communion with Jesus or his Church— whether by deed or belief—”there’s a grave contradiction between one’s life and the meaning and content of the Sacrament.” (Feingold’s The Eucharist) St. Thomas refers to this as “lying to the sacrament.” The Church calls this “sacrilege”.
Those are strong words! Why?? Secondly, because Communion isn’t just a symbolic action: it is also Jesus Himself! It contains what it signifies. Thus St. Paul tells us: “Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord. A person should examine himself, and only then eat the bread and drink the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many among you are ill and infirm, and a considerable number are dying.” (1 Cor 11:27-29) St. Paul literally claims that people are getting sick and dying because they are receiving Communion when they shouldn’t! That’s a weird conclusion if Communion were just a symbol of God’s love for all people, but a perfectly understandable conclusion if Communion is our reception of Jesus Christ crucified for our sins.
Think of it this way: imagine a spouse who is discovered to be cheating on his wife, and then presumes to enter into the marital act with his wife without first apologizing. How insulting! You broke communion and seek bodily union without first owning your sin and seeking reconciliation?! How much more disrespectful if we do that to our infinitely good God! That’s what we do if we presume to receive Communion if we’ve committed serious sins and not first gone to the sacrament of reconciliation. This is why the Church enjoins us as one of her five precepts: “You shall confess your sins at least once a year.” (CCC 2042) Jesus wants to forgive us our sins, and He gave us a sacrament for that too! Like a good parent, He wants us to humble ourselves, take responsibility for our sins, explicitly name them and ask for pardon, and only then presume to become one-flesh with Him. There are many reasons why someone wouldn’t receive Communion at Mass—maybe they accidentally broke the Eucharistic fast, don’t feel sufficiently recollected, arrived late, etc. Better that we care about offending God than worrying about what others might think of us if we don’t receive Communion every Mass! Remember my homily: Mass is more than just getting Communion. Taking Communion more seriously will seriously increase the amount of grace we receive when we do receive Him!
May God bless you.