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  • Writer's pictureFr. Daniel Gifford


The Light of Christ seems determined to scatter our darkness! This theme of Light keeps arising in our Liturgy in these early weeks of Ordinary Time, between Christmas and Lent. It is hard to believe that we are already even speaking of Lent, but we will be entering the desert with Christ by the end of this month. Until then, we continue to celebrate the mystery of the Incarnation (which we contemplated all throughout the Christmas Season) as we experience Him dwelling among us even in the “ordinary days” of the year. It is not only the extraordinary moments of preparation (Advent and Lent) and celebration (Christmas and Easter) that are to be filled with His Light. The mystery of the Incarnation reveals clearly that He is present within an ordinary human life. May we allow His Light to renew our hope and to guide our steps all the days of our lives.

NEW STATIONS: This weekend, while we have had many parishioners going in and out of our adoration chapel to pray for those attending the Rachel’s Vineyard Retreat, we have a new addition to aide in those reflections. Our chapel will now be adorned with the Stations of the Cross, thanks to a memorial from Tim and Julie Puhr, in honor of their son, Stevie. I am grateful for their initiative in this great contribution to our chapel. I am certain that it will bring inspiration and consolation to many, to have this reminder of the fact that Our Blessed Lord enters into our suffering and pain, even unto death, to bring it new meaning, hope and life. While they may arrive in multiple installments, the timing of having them arrive while parishioners are praying for those attending a retreat seeking healing, is quite appropriate. I look forward to reflecting on them a bit more in the bulletin during Lent, as I did with the recently completed “Images of Saint Louis” features.

NEW COVER PICTURES: Speaking of our cover pictures, featuring the many images of Saint Louis, we recently were offered some new images for our bulletin covers. Right around the time that old bulletin cover series was reaching its end, Nick and Kim Hermes offered to take some drone pictures of the outside of the Church to share with us. They picked a lovely snow-covered day in which to take them. This is the first week we’ve used one. You may see them periodically worked onto the cover from now on. As we pray to be able to see as God sees, how striking that we have been given glimpses from on high!

BOYS TEC WEEKEND: Just two weeks from now, another BOYS TEC (Teens Encounter Christ) Weekend will be held in Peterstown, on February 22-24. When I was sixteen, a Catholic retreat was not how I would have thought I wanted to spend a weekend. Thanks to the “encouragement” of my mother, I decided to give it a shot. It didn’t immediately change my life. Some people have that experience. I didn’t. To be honest, I couldn’t have told you why I felt that it was a significant moment in my young life. I couldn’t have told you why I wanted to go back and get more involved. When I did get more involved, not only did those later experiences of being involved with TEC start to make a difference, but they also helped me better appreciate the experience I had on that first weekend when I was sixteen. Why would I share this? When I extend these invitations to yet another TEC Weekend, I know that there are teens out there who hear them or read them and think, “No thanks. That’s not for me.” Similarly, I would not doubt that there are parents, grandparents, or other family members of teens (ages

16+) who think “My son/grandson/nephew/brother/etc. would never go for that.” And maybe you’re right. Maybe if you go, or if you “encourage” someone to go, they won’t have an immediately life changing experience. But, even if they don’t, it doesn’t mean that they won’t one day be trying to articulate to their own reluctant children, grandchildren, nephews, or parishioners why it’s worth giving it a shot. So, maybe it’s worth a shot for them too. Now is the time to sign up. Please reach out to me for an application or more information.

In Christ through Mary,

Fr. Gifford

St. Louis, pray for us!

Blessed Mary, Queen Mother of the King of Kings, pray for us!

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