Changes in Remembering our Dearly Deceased
As is the case with just about everything else, the Covid restrictions have presented challenges to our normal procedures of remembering our dearly deceased loved ones. However, as in many cases, these restrictions also offer opportunities for us to be more inclusive and even more prayerful, and so it is with this special remembrance.
We offered a Mass that was exclusively livestreamed with only ministers in attendance for All Souls’ this past Monday evening, and it was very well attended online and very well received. We are confident that we offered a very prayerful experience to many who are grieving. The encouragement of families to have a photo of their departed loved ones and a candle near enhanced the prayer.
Going forward we will have a beautiful Book of the Dead in which we will enshrine the names of deceased loved ones and displayed as Covid restrictions allow.
Our presiders will be more intentional in pausing to “…remember all of our deceased loved ones whom we once again commend to your (God’s) mercy” during the Eucharistic Prayer.
During the month of November, our beautiful (and larger than most) paschal candle will remain in our sanctuary as a visible reminder to those present, as well as to those joining each Mass via livestream, that our loved ones share in the eternal light of Christ. The Book of the Dead will be next to that candle.
We will no longer display in our chapel the large framed list of people whose funerals we have held here at Holy Family because of its limited exposure in our chapel. We also are confident that we can be more inclusive of our departed loved ones going forward and not only those whose funerals have been held here.
Fr. Michael McGivney Presented for Sainthood
As we celebrated All Saints Day last week, we were also excited to share that Fr. Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus, is being presented to the larger worldwide church for sainthood. This formal process of recognition begins with waiting five years after the person’s death. The bishop of the diocese where the person died opens up an investigation into their life, then proof of a life of heroic virtue follows by verification of miracles directly attributed to the person being considered. The verification of miracles brings with it the title ‘Blessed’ and the final step is canonization.
Fr. McGivney died in 1890 after serving in New Haven, Connecticut as a parish priest. He founded the Knights as a mutual aid and fraternal insurance organization, particularly for immigrants and their families. It has developed into the world’s largest Catholic fraternal organization.
This news is received with particular joy and excitement by our own Knights of Columbus here at Holy Family. I want to take this opportunity to again thank them for the charitable ministry that they share to make our parish and church stronger. The Knights are always supportive and, as you may well know, have a particular fondness for feeding us at our Knights Cafes following Mass along with many other events.
Survey for Christmas
Christmas is coming. I know we haven’t even had Thanksgiving or started Advent yet, but we always begin to plan for both Christmas and Advent together, selecting a theme and preparing to welcome so many of you and so many who don’t regularly join us. This year we face a unique challenge of preparing for the unknown factors of changing pandemic protocols from the state and the Archdiocese, and the general unknown regarding how many people will join us, thus requiring a radically changed Mass schedule for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. In order to best serve you and our many guests, please fill out the survey that will we will be sending out this week. Your input and feedback will help us prepare for a most prayerful Christmas. Thank you!!!
This Weekend’s Scripture Question
Are you prepared for the feasts of life that will come unexpectedly? See Matthew 25:1-13 for details.