As I was reading some reflections, I came across this thought from a preacher named Daniel Houghton and it piqued my interest (since I know nothing about hunting) when he described the difference between turkey (or deer) hunting, and pheasant hunting. In one you sit and “wait passively” in a concealed “blind,” and hope a target comes along. In the other, you get out there to be seen, “actively wait” for a target while walking the fields, and make things happen.
In this weekend’s readings we hear two commands from the Lord: Give comfort, and prepare the way for the Lord. One is from a prophecy of Isaiah, the other from Mark’s gospel quoting Isaiah. Both are commands, calling us to be “active,” not passive involvement in the work of living and spreading the Good News.
According to Daniel the preacher, “active waiting” for the Lord would mean taking our prayers and turning them into action. Active waiting turns our prayers for the hungry into food boxes, our prayers for the homeless into soup kitchens, or helping the needy accordingly. Active waiting turns our prayers for the sick and the lonely into visits and invitations. Active waiting transforms individuals and parishes into doers of the Word, and not just hearers only.
St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta once said, “Whatever you do in your family, for your children, for your husband, for your wife, you do for Jesus.” Every night when we go to bed, let us ask ourselves, “Where have I found Christ today?” The answer will be God’s Advent gift to us that day. By being active and waiting we will receive an extra gift: Christ himself. Let us remember the saying of St. Thomas Aquinas: “Without God, I can’t. Without me, He won’t.”
Happy Advent, Happy waiting.
This coming week we have a wonderful opportunity to take part in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, as we will have the Advent Penance Service on December 13th at St. Valentine Church. This service will begin at 7 p.m. with a little preparation followed by individual confession. Besides Fr. Henry and myself there will be Fr. Rick Hartmann and Fr. Sal Briffa from the Clergy Village and Fr. Pat Brennan from St. Paul of the Cross. Advent is a good time to heal all that keeps us from experiencing the divine love and mercy.
This is my yearly gentle reminder about your Christmas Contribution. Every year I was surprised by the amount we collected at Christmas. You always surprise me. I want to thank you for your contributions throughout the year and especially at Christmas. As you know we get to keep 100% of this collection whereas we only keep 93% of the regular collection. So this year too you can serve and honor God with a special gift for the Christmas, and I ask you to be as generous as your situation allows. Know for sure that every dollar you contribute will be used for the good and betterment of St. Valentine Parish Community. Thank you in advance.
Evening Prayer Reminder – Sundays During Advent
Prepare for Christmas; and join fellow parishioners as we pray:
“Come Lord Jesus, Come”
Where: School Chapel—please use the Dow street entrance.
When: 5pm on these Sundays: December 10 and 17
Check this Out!!! – Continued Video Presentation Today
Today we will be viewing Religious Mysteries, Volume 1, Episode 1, The Secret of Bernadette. (47 minutes)
December 17th: The Story of the Nativity. (The story is told as if the events were happening for the very first viewers, the Jewish people, and it connects every event with the prophecies foretold in the Old Testament. 59 minutes)
We will take the Christmas holiday off and resume on January 7, 2018.
Parish Office Hours Christmas/New Year 2017-2018
The parish office will observe the following schedule during the Christmas Holidays.
Monday, December 18— Thursday, December 21: 8:30 am – 4:00 p.m.
Friday, December 22— Tuesday, December 26: OFFICE CLOSED
Wednesday, December 27: 8:30 am – 11:30 am
Thursday, December 28: 8:30 am – 11:30 am
Friday, December 29— January 2 : OFFICE CLOSED
Wednesday, January 3 – Resume office hours of 8:30 am—4:00 pm
The parish office has a voicemail system that will take messages when the office is closed. Messages will be returned in a timely fashion. Please speak slowly and clearly when leaving a message. Thanking you in advance for your understanding and patience. The office phone number is 313-532-4394.
If you have an emergency, please, enter extension 106.
Staff phone extension directory:
Fr. Socorro – 105
Fr. Henry – 102
Mrs. Sue Daly – 100
Mrs. Bonnie Danic – 101
Ms. Kathryn Potts – 103