I hope you heard that last Thursday, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, bishop Olmsted announced a new diocesan capital campaign, "Together Let Us Go Forth, Juntos Sigamos Adelante". I know that it sounds like an incredible task, but we live in hope...and we work hard.
It is important to see how this campaign will benefit us at OLPH. Of course, it will help pay for the new Catholic high school, Pope St. John Paul II, in Avondale. Many of our students will consider the new school because it may be closer to their homes. Also, there are funds for our three Newman Centers at our universities, especially a new Center at Grand Canyon University. Again, many of our young people will directly benefit from this campaign. Finally, our parish will receive a percentage (30%) of the funds that we raise, to help us with some much needed work. I will be letting you know more about our parish plans in the future.READ MORE
In this week’s Gospel Jesus reminds us that forgiveness is not optional. He has forgiven our sins and we owe that same unconditional mercy to others. But forgiveness is difficult. Sometimes it’s easier to pretend like “it’s really no big deal.” The truth is, if we recognize our need to forgive, we may have to acknowledge that we are wounded. Sometimes it makes us feel weak or ashamed to admit that another has the power to hurt us. Yet, forgiveness must start with the truth about having been wronged. Perhaps we loved someone wholeheartedly and they owed us love in return, but instead they neglected us, or failed to care. Only God loves perfectly. Only with his help can we discover the truth about who we must forgive and find the strength to offer forgiveness to those who have caused us the most pain. Only he can help us to forgive again and again, without counting or keeping track. Ask our Lord for his help to forgive everyone who has ever offended you, especially those who don’t deserve it.READ MORE
Next week our Jr. High and High School youth programs begin, which always makes me very happy. It is so great to get to know better our young people. I also enjoy watching them grow in their faith.
I know that as children grown order their activities in school become more important; I was very active in my high school. However, please remember that this is an important time when young people are developing attitudes and values that will form their lives as adults. Public schools teach secular values; they are not allowed to teach religious values.READ MORE
When our children were still small, we insisted that when they hurt or offended each other they ask forgiveness. Just saying "Sorry," in that droopy-headed way children (and some grown -ups) do wasn't good enough. They had to name what it was they were sorry for and tell how they planned to do better. "I'm sorry I kicked you. I will go for a run next time I feel that angry." Or, another time, "I'm sorry I accidentally hurt you and I'll try not to do it again". The child who was offended had to shake hands or hug and say, "I forgive you." Sometimes they both needed time before they were ready to ask for and give forgiveness. Our children learned how to handle conflict. It wouldn't have worked if we, as parents, had not done it too.READ MORE
I can't believe it is September already: happy Labor Day. Let's be thankful for all those who labor to make our lives better and for those who are seeking employment. I say this every year, but it feels strange to honor labor by not laboring.
With September there are a few important calendar dates I want to give you. The Knights and Ladies of the Holy Sepulchre pray the rosary for our brothers and sisters in the Holy Land every first Monday of the month. Monday, Labor Day, is the first of the month and we will be hosting a group of them in the church to pray the rosary at 6:00pm. We always invite parishioners at the church we gather at, so you are invited.READ MORE
On Sun, Sep 17 we begin Sunday Religious Education for children of all ages and this year we are offering classes for adults too! Parents of children in the Sunday program are required to attend, and all adults are welcome!
English adult sessions begin with the Catholicism video series with Bishop Robert Barron. It is a beautiful award winning series, chockful of information about Christ and the Church he founded. Each Sunday we will watch part of the series, taking time for reflection and discussion.READ MORE