Pastor’s Corner for April 23, 2017 (Divine Mercy Sunday):
CHRIST IS RISEN! ALLELUIA!
Today is not so much a reflection as a newsflash. Cue the teletype….
At the Easter Vigil, we welcomed seven people into the Church. Two were Baptized and five who were previously Baptized in other churches made their Profession of Faith. All seven received the Sacrament of Confirmation and their First Holy Communion. One of the Elect (those to be Baptized) chose to defer Baptism and another, unfortunately, had a family emergency last week, and so he will be Baptized, Confirmed and will receive First Communion after he returns. A happy anniversary to all those were Baptized, received and Confirmed in years past here and elsewhere! A huge thank you to Dc. David Paternostro, S.J., who ably supervised the RCIA process this year, with help of a small but dedicated team.
On Easter morning, six School of the Madeleine pupils and one soon-to-be pupil were Baptized. The mother of two of these children was received into the Church last Easter. Lots of their family and friends were in attendance. Thank you to Heather Skinner for her work in preparing these children for Baptism. That Mass, the 9:30, was packed to the rafters. I hope those of you who were there were warm and welcoming so that that some of our guests will return and become regulars to our parish community.
This weekend, 26 of our teenagers will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation at the 5:30 Mass. They have been preparing since late September by attending discussions under the guidance of Joan Bell, taking an online Confirmation course, and helping out in a number of service projects, including the Holiday Giving Tree. This is for the most part a young group: most are high school sophomores. Thank you to Joan, Christine, and Samuel for their work in preparing these young people for the Sacrament.
I last spoke with Bishop Barber the week before Holy Week. He told me that he was hoping to release the assignments for the Diocese, including your new pastor, either this week or next. If it is released this week, it will be too late to publish in this week’s bulletin, but rest assured, I will let you know as soon as I possibly can. [Editor’s update: Fr. Carl announced at this weekend’s Masses that our next pastor will be Fr. Nicholas Glisson, currently pastor of St. Lawrence O’Toole-St. Cyril of Jerusalem in Oakland.]
I want to thank both groups that make up the Transition Committee for their work in helping make this not only a smooth transition, but a fruitful one for the parish. Mark your calendars: the party will be Sunday, June 11 after the 11:00 Mass!
On Monday, the Provincial released the assignments for next year, and so I can share with you where I and the other friars will be going after we leave St. Mary Magdalen. Fr. Cassian will fully retire at St. Dominic’s in Los Angeles. (St. Dominic’s was my first assignment as a priest back in 1998, so it holds a very special place in my heart.) Fr. Michael Carey will become Dean of the Moral Theology department at St. Patrick’s Seminary in Menlo Park. Fr. Michael Sweeney will continue his work with the Catherine of Siena Institute and live at St. Albert’s Priory in Oakland. As I hoped, I have been granted a year sabbatical. Like Fr. Michael Sweeney, I will be based out of St. Albert’s.
This past week I was in St. Louis with MAD Principal Ken Willers, Vice Principals Heather Skinner and Joseph Nagel, along with members of the Advisory Board and spouses attending the annual National Catholic Education Association annual convention. Both this year and last year, the Board presented a workshop at the convention and at both, our School of the Madeleine was honored. We are blessed to have Mr. Willers as principal of our outstanding parish school.