October is upon us and the leaves are changing color and falling! Its autumn in New England and that means apple picking, football, MLB playoffs and sweaters! I think the fall season is one of the most beautiful especially in this area! So enjoy the season because winter is not far away!
October is also Respect Life Month. The Respect Life Program is under the direction of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and highlights the value and dignity of every human life. The theme for the coming year is “Be Not Afraid”.
In early September, Professor Amy Barrett, a distinguished law professor at the University of Notre Dame, appeared before the U.S Senate Judiciary Committee for her confirmation hearing as the nominee to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Professor Barrett is an outstanding lawyer and academician. She is also a committed Catholic and the mother of seven children.
At the confirmation hearings several Democratic Senators repeatedly raised questions about her suitability to serve because of her Catholic faith. The most offensive and I believe deeply bigoted comments came from Senator Dianne Feinstein from California. She expressed her great concern about Professor Barrett as a judge because “dogma lives loudly in you.”
Of course, the Senator is an also ardent and vocal supporter of abortion on demand. Her dogma that abortion should be unlimited and paid for by taxpayers seems to live quite “loudly” within her!
Professor Barrett, as every Catholic should, believes in the Church’s teaching. She understands that all human life is sacred from natural conception until natural death. And human dignity and human life should be respected in law.
It might be news to Senator Feinstein and her cohorts in the U.S. Senate but a great many faithful Catholics do let their convictions “live loudly” in their hearts and also in their actions. It’s called being a witness and it takes tremendous courage in our contemporary culture. It is a courage and conviction sadly missing in many of our Catholic elected officials.
In this Respect Life Month let us stand up with pride and with courage for our convictions. Pray for an increase of respect of human life in our nation and in our world. Don’t give in to Senator Feinstein’s anti-Catholic bigotry. Do not be afraid as Catholics to proclaim with enthusiasm “the dogma that lives loudly in you!”
One great way to take up such prayer for respect life is to join us at October Devotions on Mondays at 7:00pm. This week we welcome back to OLM, Fr. Shemek who served here just a few years ago. He is to speak to us about Mary, Our Lady of Częstochowa.
The Black Madonna of Częstochowa is a revered icon of the Virgin Mary housed at the Jasna Góra Monastery in Częstochowa, Poland. Come learn more about her and her powerful intercession on Monday. There are also Confessions with two priests beginning at 6:00pm on Monday.
I want to thank you for your generous response to the recent hurricane relief efforts. The OLM Outreach Collection raised almost $8,000 in the month of September. As a result we were able to send $4,000 to the relief efforts here in the US led by Catholic Charities USA. Also an additonal $4,000 to the relief efforts in the Caribbean led by Catholic Relief Services. Your prayers and generosity are appreciated.
I also thank the many parishioners who have responded so generously to our Annual Parish Collection. This important collection taken up in late September is critical to the fiscal stability and well being of the parish. I am truly grateful for those who dug so deep to help us in this effort. If you have not yet returned your gift to the Annual Parish Collection, I urge you do so soon and I thank you for your support.
We are recruiting new Altar Severs at OLM and the training camp commences soon. If you son or daughter is interested, please contact Fr. Barrow. Yes, it’s a low paying job but the spiritual benefits are priceless! So join the few, the proud, the OLM Servers Corps!
Come to Devotions on Monday, Fr. Shemek will be happy to see you! Do good. Be well. God Bless! Go Pats! Go Sox! Our Lady of Częstochowa, pray for us!