I hope you enjoyed Catholic Schools Week at OLM. Our terrific students did a marvelous job speaking at Masses last weekend about why they love OLM School. Their brief words speak volumes about the quality of our parish school students. We thank them for their witness to Catholic Education.
I would also like to thank and commend Mr. Scott Fuller, the OLM School Principal, for the tremendous job he does leading our school and ensuring a great education and a truly Catholic environment for our budding saints and scholars. Our outstanding teachers deserve our gratitude for their hard work, dedication and commitment to making OLM truly a great school. And we also thank our OLM School Parents for the sacrifice they make in choosing Catholic Schools.
The OLM School Open House saw quite a few visitors and prospective students stop by last Sunday. The many and varied opportunities to develop the minds and souls of our young saints and scholars were on display for all to enjoy. From Robotics to the Friends of Mercy, the quality of our curriculum of academics, arts, athletics, charitable good works and living Catholic faith was seen by many.
On this weekend the Church gives a "Blessing of the Throats" in honor of St. Blaise. It couldn’t come at a better time with the onslaught of the flu across the area and entire country. It has been a very tough flu season even deadly in some cases. We received the
following memorandum from the Diocese of Providence:
“Each year at this time concerns are raised regarding the potential spread of influenza throughout various communities. The most recent weekly report from the State Department of Public Health categorizes the statewide estimate of influenza activity as ‘widespread’. In addition, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this year's flu vaccine is less effective in the prevention of influenza A(H3N2) than in prior years. As pastors committed to promoting and protecting the well-being of our parishioners, we need to be as cautious and prudent as possible in responding to any possible threat, especially for children and the elderly. Parishioners who have symptoms of illness should be very careful to avoid any physical contact that could transmit the virus with others. Likewise, parishioners should be reminded that if they have symptoms of serious illness they are dispensed from attending Holy Mass on Sundays and in fact should not attend Holy Mass. This is an obligation in charity that parishioners should take very seriously. Finally, but certainly not least in importance, we approach this situation as we approach everything in life, from the perspective of our faith and in prayer. Please ask the Lord's protection upon our community during this time of widespread illness.”
Common sense should be our guide during this time of flu. Don’t offer the Sign of Peace with your hands if you have the sniffles. The Sign of Peace can be offered verbally without a handshake or with a nod of the head. Don’t take offense if someone doesn’t put their hand out to shake. And above all pray for the sick.
We turn to St. Blasé this weekend as he is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers and is invoked for all throat afflictions and sickness. On his feast two candles are used with a prayer that God free from all such
afflictions those who receive this blessing. St. Blaise enjoyed widespread veneration in the Eastern and Western Churches due to many cures attributed to him. According to tradition, he was Bishop of Sebaste in Armenia and was martyred. From the eighth century he has been invoked on behalf of the sick, especially those afflicted with illnesses of the throat. May he intercede for us!
Well, today is, of course, Superbowl Sunday! Yes, once again Tom Terrific is leading our Patriots at the big game Sunday night! With kickoff at 6:30pm we’ve decided to cancel the RE Classes on Sunday evening so the students don’t miss the game. Hopefully all of New England is smiling on Monday morning and basking in yet another victory for the Pats! I know there are a few Eagles’ Fans in the pews, don’t worry I’ll pray for you!!
Do good. Be well. God Bless! Go Pats, Go!!!