In the Catholic Church we have patron saints for just about everything, from Alpine troops (St. Maurice) to zoos (St. Francis of Assisi). They’re an important part of Catholic spirituality, because we believe that the saints are still alive, that we are still connected to them through the Holy Spirit in the Communion of Saints, and that they can still help us with their prayers since they’re united with God in heaven.
We should each have our own patron saints as well. Mine is St. Joseph, which is my middle name and he’s the saint I chose for my Confirmation name. I chose St. Joseph because he’s the Protector of the Church, the patron for a holy death, and because he’s the foster father of Jesus Christ. He’s a paternal figure and example for the entire Church, showing us the meaning of earthly fatherhood and spiritual fatherhood. I ask St. Joseph to pray for me every day, and I often ask for his help with particularly difficult situations. Who’s your patron saint? Do you know about their life, and do you ask them to pray for you daily?
We also have a patron saint of the United States. The Blessed Virgin Mary is the patron saint of our nation under her title of the Immaculate Conception. Her feast day usually falls on December 8, but this year December 8 is a Sunday so we move the celebration of her feast day to Monday. It’s also usually a holy day of obligation, but you should already be going to Mass on Sunday, and the obligation doesn’t move with the day in these circumstances.
The Immaculate Conception refers to the fact that the Blessed Virgin Mary was preserved even from original sin from the moment of her conception in the womb of St. Ann, the grandmother of Jesus. This was a special grace granted to Mary through her Son Jesus, even before He was born, to prepare her to conceive Him in her womb, which we celebrate at the Solemnity of the Annunciation. Confused yet? To put it another way, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception we celebrate that Mary was, as the Archangel Gabriel said, “full of grace.” From the very moment of her conception God was with her in a powerful way. She is a sign to us that God is also with us, and that we are destined to join Jesus and Mary in heaven, so long as we follow Him. That’s why we pray in the Hail Mary, “Pray for us, now and at the hour of our death.” Tomorrow, as we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and the patronal feast of the United States, let’s remember to ask Mary to pray for us and for our country now, and at the moment of our greatest need.
Fr. Bryan Howard
1st Sunday of Advent – Year A – 1 December 2019
It’s been my practice since I started as pastor here to do a sort of financial assessment of the parish every September, where we go over the budget and talk about our plans for the future and what the Church needs to accomplish them. I was convicted recently that there is something more important than our financial condition, our spiritual condition. How are we doing as a parish and as a Church in our relationship with God and in our relationships with one another. What better time to ask that question than the First Sunday of Advent, when we begin to prepare for the birth of Jesus.
It’s dangerous to but too much stock in numbers, because there’s more to the health of the Church than how many people go to Mass, but we certainly want more people going to Mass and approaching the Sacraments. So, how is the Catholic Church doing? According to CARA, a Catholic research agengy, from 2000 to 2018, the US Catholic population increased by almost 9 million people, to 68.7 m. In 2018, there were 380,000 fewer infants baptized, over 70,000 fewer confirmations, over 200,000 fewer first Communions, over 100,000 fewer Catholic marriages, and the number of Catholic who attend Mass every Sunday dropped from 30% to 21%.
We know that the Church is struggling in the US, but how are we doing as a parish? In the past few years, the number of baptisms and funerals we’re doing has gone up, as well as weekday Mass attendance. We’ve instituted Bible Studies and have about 2 dozen people participating. We’ve stayed about the same on the number of weddings, only one each year I’ve been here. The best indication of the spiritual health of a parish, however, is to look at Sunday Mass attendance and the number of people going to confession. I would say that the number of people going to confession is about the same, or maybe a little bit higher, than when I started here, although we obviously don’t keep a count of that. The number of people going to Mass on Sundays, however, has definitely gone down. We always get over 500 people for Christmas and Easter and over 400 people for Ash Wednesday, but we’re averaging about 350 for a regular weekend where just a few years ago we averaged over 380.
Now, I don’t think that the Catholic Church is in danger of dying out; there are many places in the world where the Church is growing exponentially, like some parts of Africa and Asia. So, why is this happening here? Well, the clergy abuse scandal certainly plays a part. The bishops and priests who committed those atrocities forgot or ignored their responsibility to shepherd God’s people and many people stopped trusting the Church, and who could blame them. However, that doesn’t explain everything. The news broke in about 2002, but the decline in Mass attendance can be traced back to the 1970’s.
I think another reason for the decline is the cultural change that started in the 1960’s. As peoples’ morality and lifestyles changed and things that the Church considers to be grave sin began to be seen as normal, people began to label the Church as intolerant. When people identify something as part of their character or their right, then calling it a sin can seem like an attack on them as a person. The Church has a responsibility to preach the truth, but we all know that it can be very hard to hear the truth.
That’s a lot of bad news, but there’s also a lot of Good News. Remember what Mother Teresa said, “We are called upon not to be successful, but to be faithful.” In other words, our part is to follow the Gospel, to live the faith, and to love like Christ. God is the One who brings success or failure. If we are faithful, and seem to fail, then we should look to the Cross. Christ seemed to have failed when He was nailed to the Cross, but through the sign of the Cross the Gospel has spread to every continent.
Today, I want all of us to renew our commitment to God, to be renewed in the faith and in the grace of God. Moving forward, we will be focusing on renewing ourselves in the faith through a focus on the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Holy Matrimony. Let’s put the Eucharist at the center of our Church family and at the center of our families at home. The best way we can evangelize our community is to live out the faith with joy. Joy is contagious and addictive. When we see someone who is full of joy we want to be close to them and that gives us an opportunity to share the faith simply by living it out in a radical way. I see the mission of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church as helping your family to live out the faith and put Christ at the center of our homes and lives. As part of our focus on the Eucharist, we already have opportunities for Adoration every first Wednesday and every Friday morning. As part of our focus on the Family, we are working on starting youth ministry as well as more opportunities for Marriage Enrichment. We also want everyone to know that families and children are always welcome at every parish Mass and parish event, and if the topics being talked about are too mature for certain ages we’ll make that clear in advance.
Finally, this parish is already very committed to our patron saint, Our Lady of Lourdes, and we want to ask her to continue to pray for and bless our parish and our families. So, we’re going to be adding a Mass the First Saturday of every month which will be dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. I’ll be available for confession half an hour before Mass and we’ll pray a Marian devotion or prayer after Mass. The Mass will be the ordinary (Novus Ordo) Mass that we’re used to, but all the prayers will be in Latin while the readings and homily will be in English. This will give us an opportunity to experience Mass in the language that the Church used for over one and a half millennia, and the language that most Catholics and most of the saints heard Mass in.
Lord God, we ask you to bless our parish, our community, and our families. Renew us in the faith and in your grace through the Sacraments of the Most Holy Eucharist and Holy Matrimony, that we might all grow closer to you as one family in Christ. Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us.
If you say that someone is stirring the pot, you usually mean that they’re making trouble or bringing up things that they know will lead to arguments and tension, and we almost always see this as a bad thing. It’s the same idea as the rule that you’re not supposed to talk about politics or religion in polite company, because it will just lead to an argument. However, stirring the pot has a literal meaning, too, in cooking, and it’s absolutely vital to preparing good food.
If you’re making a pot of beans or stew you need to occasionally stir the pot to make sure that everything’s not just sitting in one place on the bottom. If you don’t stir the pot it’ll burn and you’ll be left with ruined beans and a pot needing to be scrubbed down. The same is true in the spiritual life. You need to occasionally examine your conscience in prayer, asking the Lord to help you see where you’re sins and vices are, where you’ve failed to listen to the voice of God and how He’s calling you to conversion. We normally do this before going to confession so we can make a good and complete confession, but if you only go to confession once a year or less, that’s not really enough. We know that saints like Mother Teresa and Pope St. John Paul II went to confession at least every week or two. We don’t need confession less than they did. That’s why I encourage people to go to confession at least once or twice a month. In this way we don’t let things just sink to the bottom but keep them stirred up where we can see them and, with God’s help, grow in holiness and virtue.
Things like beans only need to be stirred every 15 minutes or so, but some things need to be stirred constantly, like a roux for gumbo or sauce. If you don’t keep stirring the roux it won’t combine and the butter and four will start to burn, then you’ll have to completely start over. I compare this to the spiritual discipline of practicing the presence of God. You can’t live your life if you’re constantly examining your conscience. There has to come a point when you stop examining and start acting. Most of life consists in putting into action in our lives what we’ve heard from God in prayer. Practicing the presence of God, however, is something that we can do all the time. It’s a very simple discipline where you just remind yourself that God is present. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, and whoever you’re with, whether in Church, at work, or in a bar, God is present there in some way. Remembering God’s presence can motivate us to avoid sin, to practice Christian virtue, and to have to courage to live out our faith even in the most difficult times.
Stirring the pot just to cause trouble for people is bad, but we do occasionally need to stir up our own spiritual lives in order to keep things on the right track. After all, if you ruin a pot of beans you’ve lost a few hours work and some beans, but you only get one shot at life.
The annual #iGiveCatholic crowdfunding event is coming up on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Every year Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year, follows Thanksgiving, and Cyber Monday, the biggest online shopping day, follows Black Friday. Now Tuesday, December 3, or Giving Tuesday, is one of the biggest charitable giving days of the year, but it's only for one day.
To donate to Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, click on the #iGiveCatholic logo above. All gifts this year will go to support religious education here at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church. Please let your friends and former parishioners know about #iGiveCatholic and how they can help OLL.
Fr. Bryan Howard
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C – 17 November 2019
There are a lot of movies and books about the apocalypse or the end of the world, like “The Walking Dead,” “Left Behind,” and “Avengers: End Game,” now the highest grossing movie of all time, not adjusted for inflation. Our culture is fascinated with the apocalypse or the end of the world, but as Catholics we don’t really talk about it all that much. We typically prefer to talk about more positive sounding things, life in Christ, prayer, faith, hope, and love, and heaven, but it’s good to think about the last things sometimes, too. In his “Rule for Monks” St. Benedict writes, “Keep death ever before your eyes.” This advice wasn’t meant to be morbid; in fact, he included it in his list of “Instruments of Good Works.” It’s meant to remind us that heaven is our goal and we get there by staying close to Christ and following Him here on earth. So, let’s talk about some common myths about the Second Coming and the Catholic answer to them.
Myth # 1: We’ll know when it’s coming. Despite the many times that people have tried to predict the end of the world, Jesus Himself said that we won’t know when it’s coming. It true that He gave us signs to look for, including war, earthquakes, famines, plagues, and “mighty signs in the sky,” but when has there been a time in human history when these things weren’t happening? There are always wars, natural disasters, solar eclipses and things like that. The whole point is that we should always be ready to go, but we never know when our last moment will be. Make sure your family know that you love them, don’t put off tomorrow what you can do today, and avoid mortal sins like the plague.
Myth # 2: Jesus will come to establish a thousand year kingdom. This is the idea that, as one person put it, “Jesus promised the Kingdom of God, but all He left us was the Church.” Some people believe that Jesus will come again to establish a Kingdom on earth for 1,000 years before the final end of the world. However, Jesus never intended to establish the kind of earthly kingdom that they’re thinking about, but rather a kingdom of service and of prayer. We come together in Mass to pray, then we go out to spread the Kingdom of God through acts of love for one another. At the end of time, when Jesus Christ comes in glory, some will be resurrected to eternal life in Christ, and others to eternal death in hell. On that day, we’ll realize that the Kingdom of God was in the palm of our hands all along, and all we had to do was reach out and accept what God has been trying to give us.
Myth # 3: We will be like the angels in heaven. This one is based off on an actual quote from the Bible. We often imagine that, when we die, we’ll be like angels with wings and harps floating on little clouds. I’m sorry to burst your bubbles if you were looking forward to that, but we won’t be angels, we’ll still be human. God made us as humans, and God wants us to be humans, even when we’re glorified in heaven. We will have glorified bodies, but they will still be our own, human glorified bodies. How will God unite all of the dead back with their bodies? I don’t have any idea, but if anyone can do it, it’s probably God. Besides, I’m still holding out hope that we’ll be able to fly anyway, even without angel wings.
Myth # 4: I’ll be judged again at the Second Coming. In Catholic theology, we speak of two judgements. Our personal judgement happens at the moment of our death, when we have to answer for our lives, as St. Paul says in 2nd Corinthians, “For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, so that each one may receive recompense, according to what he did in the body, whether good or evil.” This is where we will either go to heaven or hell or purgatory, and if you get to purgatory you will eventually make it to heaven, but you should definitely not shoot for purgatory. That’s like trying to get the lowest passing grade on a test, “If I just get a D- I’ll be fine.” If you aim for that and fall just short, that’s it, game over, but if you try to be a saint, then, even if you fall short you’ll probably still make it at least into purgatory. At the end of time there is a general judgement, where all the souls are divided into sheep and goats, as Jesus describes in Matthew 25. You won’t learn any new at the general judgement that you didn’t find out at your personal judgement.
In the psalm, we sang, “The Lord comes to rule the earth with justice,” and we often talk about the Law of God,” meaning the moral law, the Ten Commandments, and Jesus’ New Commandment of Love. We sometimes think of the Laws of Nature, like the Law of Gravity, as hard and fast rules that can’t be broken, and if you try to break them you’ll pay the price. If you think you can break the law of gravity, it may end up breaking several of your bones. Then, we think of the moral Law of God as being soft and malleable, so we feel safe in breaking it. We may not pay a price immediately, but we will pay one eventually. Broken bones are easy to heal compared with broken lives and broken relationships. Instead of trying to see how much we can get away with, let’s try to see just how saintly we can become.
This coming Friday we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the dedication of Our Lady of Lourdes Church. As you all know, our Church was flooded during hurricane Katrina. It took a few year for the parish to be reopened and then the Church to be restored, but on November 22, 2009, Archbishop Aymond celebrated the Mass re-dedicating Our Lady of Lourdes Church. For us, this is a symbol of our restored communities and of our love for our Church and parish.
For any parish, the anniversary of the dedication of their Church is an important and meaningful day. In fact, it’s a solemnity for that parish. A solemnity is the highest level of feast day in the Church. There’s a memorial of a saint, like the Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini that was celebrated this past Wednesday, then a feast day, like the Feast of Saints Simon and Jude the apostles which we celebrated on October 28, then there’s a solemnity. There are only 25 solemnities celebrated by the entire Church throughout the world. However, each individual Church celebrates their named feast day, for us the Memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes on February 11, and the anniversary of the dedication of their Church as solemnities in their own parish Church.
In the preface of the Eucharistic Prayer for the dedication of a Church we pray, “For in this visible house that you have let us build and where you never cease to show favor to the family on pilgrimage to you in this place, you wonderfully manifest and accomplish the mystery of your communion with us. Here you build up for yourself the temple that we are and cause your Church, spread throughout the world, to grow ever more and more as the Lord’s own Body, till she reaches her fullness in the vision of peace, the heavenly city of Jerusalem.” This is what the dedication of a Church means and what we celebrate this Friday. We thank the Lord for allowing and helping us to build our Church. We celebrate that, in this Church we grow in communion with God and with one another in our Church family, and are nourished and strengthened by the Eucharist to live out our faith in the ordinary events of our lives. We celebrate that this Church represents for heaven and the heavenly Temple for us, reminding us that this life is not our final destination, but that we are together on this pilgrimage through life to our final destination in heaven.
I hope to see all of you this Friday as we come to celebrate the birthday of our own parish Church. We’ll begin with Mass at 6:30 pm and have a reception afterwards.
There was a time when people thought of going to war not only as a duty and responsibility that they owed to their homeland but as a point of honor. It was something that many young men looked forward to. We can’t imagine that because we live after the war that changed all of that, that changed civilization forever, the Great War or the War to End All Wars, what we normally call World War I.
The world powers in England, France, Germany, and Russia saw this war coming decades ahead of time, knowing that the system of alliances that kept the peace couldn’t last forever. They also saw the technology of war changing with the invention of machine guns, more powerful explosives and artillery, airplanes, and even poison gas. Tsar Nicholas II of Russia called the leaders of 26 nations, including all of the major world powers, to the Hague Conferences in 1899 and 1907, where these nations agreed to outlaw the use of poisons and any technology developed after the Conferences.
However, in 1914 this all went out the window when World War I began. In January 2015, the Germans were the first to use poison gas against the Russians, first against the Russians and then the French and British. They were soon emulated by the British and French. During the course of the war three types of poison gas were developed, bromide, chlorine, and mustard gas. Each one was worse than the last, and even if you survived the initial attack, you might have to deal with debilitating effects from it for the rest of your life. When you add in the first wide-scale use of machine guns, aerial bombing, modern artillery, and trench warfare, the casualties of World War I were higher than any previous war (around 10 million military and 6 million civilian lives lost), and the survivors suffered terrible physical and psychological effects from the war.
This all lead to a greater understanding of the effects that wars have on the people who fight them and are caught up in them. What previous generations thought of as cowardice or weakness, we now understand to be normal human reactions to horrible, traumatic experiences. The soldiers on both sides of that war were honored by the establishment of Armistice Day on November 11, the day that the war ended. In the United States it was raised to a national holiday in 1938. It occurs on the “11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,” which is when the armistice was signed. In 1954, President (formerly General) Dwight D. Eisenhower changed it to Veterans Day in 1954.
On this November 11, at 11 AM, let us pause to offer a prayer for the roughly 18 million living Veterans in the US, and countless who have already passed away. Let’s also remember that we join countries around the world in honoring their own Veterans and all those, no matter what country they’re from, who fight to protect their homes and people.
St. Michael the Archangel, patron saint of soldiers, pray for them.
In one of my favorite quotes, the one that I put on the end of all of my emails, Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos said, “Time, in which we have found nothing to offer up to God, is lost for eternity.” Blessed Francis Seelos goes on to explain how we can offer things up to God, like our work, our sufferings, inconveniences, and also prayers and obedience to God, but I want to focus on time.
Today is the day when we “fall back” in daylight savings time and lose an hour on the clocks. The idea of daylight savings time is to add an extra hour of daylight to the workday, so we can get more work done. We don’t like to waste any time that we could be using to accomplish our own priorities, whether that’s business or pleasure. We want to give ourselves more time in the day to work or play, to accomplish things, and we go so far as to adjust the very clocks that we use to tell the time. Unfortunately, we don’t actually gain an hour. There are still 24 hours in a day. There’s still the same amount of sunlight and darkness in the day as there would have been anyway, we just adjust what times of the day are bright so we don’t lose an hour of sunlight before people wake up and go to work.
We may be able to control the clocks, but we don’t control time itself. There is only One who is outside of time, and He is the only One who can give us more time or take it away. We only have so much time left, and we don’t know how long it will be until our time is up. On that day we will have to answer for how we used the time that we were given. Did we use all of our time for ourselves and our own priorities, or did we spend our time on the things of God? Only God is eternal, because only God has no beginning or end. We cannot become eternal like God, but we can enter into God’s eternity. Whenever we invite God into our souls and put Him at the center of our lives we consecrate the hours and days of our lives by dedicating them to God.
So, reassess your priorities. What are the most important things in your life? What is valuable to you? What do you believe in? Would someone know that by observing the way that you live? Would they know what is important to you by seeing how you spend your time? Only God can give you more time; only God can bring you into heaven. One day we will all have to stand before the judgement seat of God. If we try to rely on our own accomplishments in life, without building up a relationship with God and with His family, the Church, then we may be disappointed in the outcome. If we ask for help from God the Father, in the Son, and through the Holy Spirit to live out the Divine Law by loving God above all things and loving our neighbor as ourselves, then we will be greeted as children returning to their Father’s house.
Fr. Bryan Howard
30th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C – 27 October 2019
If you read the Bible cover to cover you can’t help but see that the Bible is the story of marriage and family. The Bible begins with a marriage in the 2nd chapter of Genesis and ends with a marriage in the second to last chapter of Revelation. The Old Testament begins with the story of the family of Adam and Eve, continues with the family of Noah, and then focuses on the family of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The New Testament begins in the Gospel of Matthew with the genealogy of Jesus, which connects him to the family of Abraham. The genealogy in the Gospel of Luke takes it all the way back to Adam. We sometimes think of salvation in individual terms, but that’s a modern idea that is foreign to the Bible. You may be judged based on your own actions, but you are only saved as a member of the family of God, and the family of God on earth is the Church.
In the Gospel Jesus compares two people who go into the Temple to pray. About the first person he says, “The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, 'O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity -- greedy, dishonest, adulterous -- or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.'” The Pharisee thinks of his relationship with God as a contract. He thinks that he can justify himself, or earn salvation, by doing good works. But, Jesus said that he spoke this prayer “to himself;” he’s not really even praying to God. He’s focused on himself, on what he can do, and on how good he is. However, you can’t buy salvation or earn God’s love. God already loves you more than you even love yourself, and He wants what’s good for you more than you want it for yourself. God wants to have a real and personal relationship with us.
About the other person, Jesus says, “But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, 'O God, be merciful to me a sinner.'” The tax collector knows that he’s not worthy because he know that he’s a sinner. Sometimes we worry about the same thing; we worry that we’re not worthy of God’s love and that he won’t forgive our sins because they’re too big. It’s not about worthiness! Does a mother wonder whether her children are worthy of her love? No, she loves them because they’re her children. It causes parent’s pain when their children do wrong because they know it will bring them suffering and misery in their lives. Parents punish their children because they love them, not because they’ve stopped loving them. In the same way, God allows us to suffer the consequences of our sins in order to bring us to repentance and conversion.
Finally, Jesus says, “I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former; for whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” If we approach God already assured of our own righteousness, then we won’t recognize that we need His grace in order to be and live as children of God. A mortal sin, or deadly sin, is something that is completely irreconcilable with the love of God. Mortal sin kills our relationship with God. So, we can cast ourselves out of the family of God by committing a mortal sin, but we can’t earn our way in through good works. God is already offering it to us as a free gift, because He already loves us. It’s like our human families. If you suggest that you’ve bought your wife’s love, then you might end up with a hand shape mark on your face, but you can certainly damage or destroy that relationship by betraying her love.
The first thing we can do to strengthen our relationship with God is to pray every day. Set aside some time every day as God’s time, and try to make it the same time every day, so that it becomes a habit. Prayer is having a conversation with God. If you go for days at a time without talking to your husband or wife you’re not going to have a very good relationship. The key to any relationship is honest and sincere communication, and it’s the same with God. Tell God what’s going on in your life, what you’re thinking about, what’s good and what’s bad, and, even more importantly, listen to what God has to say to you. Listen by reading the Bible, by meditating no the truths of the faith, and by simply sitting quietly in the presence of God.
The next thing to do is to go to confession. We sometimes think that we have to get our lives in order before we can go to God, but it’s actually just the opposite. We need God’s grace to give us the strength to overcome our sins and get our lives in order, and confession is the first step in that process. In confession God forgives our sins and strengthens us against them. Many people wonder why they should go to a priest when they can confess directly to God. There are at least three reasons. First, Jesus gave the apostles the power to forgive sins in His name when He appeared to them in the upper room, and they passed on that power to the bishops and priests who succeeded them. So, when the priest absolves our sins we can be sure that they are forgiven.
Second, sin doesn’t just offend God, it harms the entire Church because we are all one family in God. We need to be reconciled with the Church, too. Finally, confessing our sins brings them into the light and breaks the power that they have over us.
Finally, go to Mass. Here in south Louisiana we understand the importance of the family dinner, and especially of the Sunday dinner. Dinner with my family is one of the memories that I treasure about my childhood. We would all sit down together, turn off the TVs, and focus on one another (there were no cell phones then). The Mass is our Christian family dinner. It’s the one time when we all, throughout the entire world, can gather in our own Churches, hear the same readings and prayers, and remind ourselves that we aren’t alone. We are all here for one another, and God is here for all of us. To deliberately miss Sunday Mass, without a good reason, is a mortal sin. We have to go to Mass on Sundays because Sunday is the day that Jesus Christ rose from the dead to new life and in the Mass we receive the very life of Jesus in the Eucharist. May our celebration of the Mass today remind all of us that we are beloved children of God, brothers and sisters of Christ, and one family in the Church.
Fr. Bryan became pastor of Our Lady of Lourdes on July 3, 2017. Read his bio here.