Feast of the Holy Family

12-27-2020Pastor's LetterFr. John C. Granato

My Dear Friends,

We have managed to get through Christmas and now we come to the feast of the Holy Family. I pray that you and our family are safe. Pope St. John Paul II writes in his Apostolic Exhortation on the family (familiaris consortio) “God created man in His own image and likeness: calling him to existence through love, He called him at the same time for love.

God is love and in Himself He lives a mystery of personal loving communion. Creating the human race in His own image and continually keeping it in being, God inscribed in the humanity of man and woman the vocation, and thus the capacity and responsibility, of love and communion. Love is therefore the fundamental and innate vocation of every human being.

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Turn to St. Joseph

12-20-2020Pastor's LetterFr. John C. Granato

My Dear Friends,

We are less than a week away from the great feast ofChristmas. Our final preparations and buying of gifts and bakingpastries and cookies are coming to an end. But we are still inAdvent. We are still called to anticipate and to hope for the comingof Christ in a way that recalls the stillness of the night and thedarkness of sin before our salvation is revealed at his birth. OurBlessed Mother and St. Joseph take pride of place this week. Consider praying the rosary this weekespecially the Joyful Mysteries. But also, consider turning to St. Joseph in a more prominent way.

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3rd Sunday of Advent

12-13-2020Pastor's LetterFr. John C. Granato

My Dear Friends,

As we celebrate the Third Sunday of Advent this week, we inch closer to the commemoration of the high feast of Christmas, the birth of our Savior. This week we focus on the virtue of joy, symbolized by the rose colored candle of the advent wreath and of the rose colored vestments of the priest. The expectation of our salvation comes upon us quickly every December as we prepare ourselves and our families of the birth that has changed the world. God became man at the conception of Jesus in the womb of our Blessed Mother, which we celebrate nine months previously on March 25th.

This day is the beginning of the Incarnation, the mystery of God becoming man. We celebrate that day of the Annunciation when Gabriel approaches Mary and asks her to be the mother of our Savior. On the 25th of March, we kneel at the words of the Nicene Creed, “and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary and became man.” We do the same at the Christmas Mass during the recitation of the Nicene Creed.

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2nd Sunday of Advent

12-06-2020Pastor's LetterFr. John C. Granato

My Dear Friends,

‘Tis the season to watch Christmas movies and shows. It always seems that during the season of Advent we spend our time watching Christmas movies that we forget to actually prepare for Christmas by meditating on the real focus of our season of Advent.

That’s ok. Every year, especially when I was a kid, I remember the cartoons; Charlie Brown’s Christmas, The Year without a Santa Claus, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, Nestor, the Long Eared Christmas Donkey, Emmitt Otter’s Jug Band Christmas, Twas the Night before Christmas, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, and my favorite, How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Of course, the non-cartoons are important as well. I remember, A Christmas Story, It’s a Wonderful Life, White Christmas, Miracle on 42nd Street, Christmas in Connecticut and Holiday Inn, the movie that gave us the first recording of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas. There have since been many comedies, dramas and musicals of Christmas themed movies and animated shows, but none of them ever did much for me. I tolerated The Santa Clause and Home Alone, but I never found that I needed to watch them every year. Also, when I was younger, I always preferred the novelty Christmas songs and the secular Christmas songs of Bing Crosby, Andy Williams, Perry Como, Nat King Cole and so many others. It wasn’t until I was older that I switched over from these secular and novelty songs to the true Christmas music that sang of the birth of Christ.

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