On Tuesday we celebrate the Patronal Feast of Our Lady of Mercy. The title for Mary, Our Lady of Mercy, dates from the early thirteenth century and is marked on September 24th. At that time, Christians had fallen into the hands of the Saracens and were enslaved and so were in need of ransom. The Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy, Mercedarian Friars, were founded in 1218 by Saint Peter Nolasco for the redemption of captive Christians The purpose of the Order's founding was to ransom those Christians who were held captive because of their faith in Christ. Often in prisons, these Christians suffered greatly until they publicly renounced their faith in Christ, thus committing apostasy. Saint Peter Nolasco, inspired by our Blessed Mother, with his followers, saw an urgent need to put into practice the mercy inspired by the divine mercy of Jesus Christ.
Christians still suffer enslavement and persecution in parts of the world. We can no longer physically ransom ourselves for those who are persecuted today as was done in the thirteenth century. But we know that Mary’s mercy still ransoms her children from a form of enslavement, namely from sin. Mary’s maternal mediation encourages us to entrust ourselves to her care. As our spiritual mother, Mary assures us that God’s mercy applies to each one of us. So in prayer and supplication, we always turn to Our Lady of Mercy.
We mark our Parish Feast with a Solemn Mass on Tuesday at 9:00AM. Father Eric Silva is our homilist this year. He serves as the Associate Pastor at St. Luke’s in Barrington and was just ordained this past June. You may remember Father from the summer he served at OLM as a seminarian. I hope you join us for the Patronal Feast Day Mass.
On Monday we start the OLM Feast Week with our 3rd Annual OLM Saints and Scholars Golf Tournament. This year we are hosting the tournament at Quidnessett Country Club. Please pray for good weather as we tee it up for OLM on Monday! Wednesday night please join us for Eucharistic Adoration and sacred music in honor of Our Lady of Mercy. A time of prayer, music and reflection before the Eucharistic Lord as we prayerfully bring our needs, and offer our thanksgiving, to our parish patroness. Thursday night join us in the OLM School Cafeteria as we perform an Act of Mercy. Once again we invite all parishioners and all parish families to join us at 6:00pm as we make sandwiches for the hungry and homeless. We ask you to please bring a pair of new adult socks with you and join us in living Mercy!
Friday we gather as a parish family for Octoberfest! Once again we have German food, beer and music. It’s a fun event for the whole family with good times for all! So stop and join us from 6pm until 9pm. Oktoberfest began in the 19th Century with the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria who later became King Ludwig I. His marriage to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen was celebrated in Bavaria. In anticipation of the wedding, a great festival was held. Today, Oktoberfest in Munich is celebrated in September in anticipation of October. In Munich, the fest lasts for 16 days, beginning on a Saturday in September and always ending on the first Sunday in October.
We gather together this OLM Feast Week with golf, Mass, prayer, music, mercy, charity and fun! So please join us for one, or all, of the many events planned this week. We celebrate what it means to be a parish family this week, spending time together in prayer and worship, but also sharing some social time together and helping the less fortunate. We pray that Our Lady of Mercy, our patroness, continues to lay her mantle of love and protection upon our parish.
I offer my profound thanks the many parishioners who have been so generous in supporting our Annual Parish Collection this year. This important collection helps us maintain our large physical plant with its two convents, school, rectory, church, outreach office and cemetery. I am truly grateful for the many parishioners who are always so generous in supporting the parish. Be well.
Do good. God Bless. Go Pats! Oremus pro invicem!