The Church celebrates the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord on February 2, commemorating when Jospeh and Mary brought the infant Jesus to the Temple forty days after his birth to perform the ritual of purification. It is commonly referred as Candlemas, since the blessing and procession of candles is included in today’s liturgy.
“In obedience to the Old Law, the Lord Jesus, the first-born, was presented in the Temple by his Blessed Mother and his foster father. This is another ‘epiphany’ celebration insofar as the Christ Child is revealed as the Messiah through the canticle and words of Simeon and the testimony of Anna the prophetess. Christ is the light of the nations, hence the blessing and procession of candles on this day. In the Middle Ages this feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or ‘Candlemas,’ was of great importance.” — From Ceremonies of the Liturgical Year
Below are pictures from the Candlemas at Saint Elizabeth Home in Janesville, WI.
The day after Thanksgiving the Sisters of Charity of Our Lady Mother of the Church celebrate Mother Marie Alma Day. We remember the great legacy our foundress left the congregation.
The morning began with Sister M. Mark sharing the great experiences she and Mother Marie Julie had in Rome last summer. It was wonderful seeing all of the pictures from their pilgrimage.
Later in the afternoon Mother David and Mother Marie Julie rekindled the Sisters’ spirits through their heartfelt words and asked for the Holy Spirit’s Fire to burn within our hearts. ”Our Motherhouse is on fire with the love of God! Call 911!,” Mother Marie Julie said. This spiritual renewal concluded with a rededication ceremony in the chapel.
The Sisters at the Motherhouse are very happy to welcome Father Benedict from the Friars of the Immaculate to come offer Holy Mass for us. Today his homily was on the degrees of patience. The first degree is when you accept some suffering and you say, “Fiat” or I accept this. The second degree is the flowering of the virtue, the fourth is the fruit when you have joy in suffering and the fourth degree is when you prefer suffering to pleasure. This is what St. Francis called perfect joy, when everything goes wrong and you are united to Jesus on the Cross. What better place to be than that? And we can only be there if we have the privilege to suffer something. Don’t forget to offer it because there is much wasted suffering when people fail to offer it in union with Jesus’ saving death.
Register now for this great opportunity!
Take some time this Spring for reflexion in a quiet, prayerful atmosphere. This retreat starting May 31, 2013 will give you time to pray, reflect, enjoy the company of other young women and the Sisters, receive the Sacraments and join us for our Corpus Christi procession.
In order to join us for prayers in chapel, please arrive by 4:30 pm Friday and bring some skirts or dresses for chapel.
We will be happy to pick you up at GreenAirport in Providence, RI or at the train station in New London, CT. Just let us know! Please plan your departure after 11:30 am if you would like a ride back to the airport or train station.
May God guide you during this exciting time of your life and may His Church benefit from the gift of your life whatever His Holy Will is for you. Let us rejoice in our love for God and His Holy Church and pray that God’s Will be done in each of us every day. God bless you and I hope to hear from you very soon!
Each year, the Institute on Religious Life holds its national meeting for Priests and Religious in Mundelein, IL. They generously include special presentations for youth and young adults ages 13-25 at no cost to the participant! This year’s theme is: “Celebrating the Year of Faith: Rediscovering a Faith Professed, Celebrated, Lived & Prayed.”
This is a one day event for the youth/young adults (both male and female) that includes plenty of food, faith, and fellowship as well as the opportunity to meet many Priests and Religious from all over the country! The Sisters of Charity of Our Lady Mother of the Church are organizing a group to attend this event.
Please R.S.V.P. by Friday, March 8, 2013.
On October 28th, Mother M. Bernard was given the Ann Seton Award along with Monsignor Henry Archambault and his brother Father Richard Archambault for their many years of dedicated service to Catholic education. The Elizabeth Ann Seton Award is given to support Catholic education. It was during the dinner that Mother spoke the following words:
Receiving the Ann Seton Award is very special and I never thought that this award would ever be given to me. However, I truly need to share this recognition with the many teachers who were an integral part of my school years and who so inspired me to do better each day.
This evening, the only word that fills my whole being is thanks. The acronym thanks will help me express what is deep in my heart.
T First I thank God for giving me the wonderful opportunity of being involved in Catholic Education. I thank God for everyone who was instrumental in bringing me to this moment. I thank God in a special way for my community who sent me to schools that prepared me for the apostolate of teaching and administration and then sending me to teach wherever I was needed.
H stands for the humbling experience of receiving such a distinguished award when I know that there are so many of you here tonight who deserve this award more than I could ever deserve it.
A is for the availability I witnessed of dedicated teachers who understood their role as teachers in a Catholic School and were totally committed to the philosophy of imparting a Catholic education to their students. These teachers were available to students who needed extra help after school. Many of these teachers left the school building hours after school ended.
N stands for the excellent nurturing that I saw practiced by the many teachers I worked with. Their patience and love for their charges were clearly seen with each new day.
K stands for the outpouring of kindnesses which I experienced daily through the many years of my ministry in Catholic education.
S stands for all the students I had the good fortune to enjoy. I will always treasure the joy and worries you brought me. ‘S’ also stands for the support which enabled me day after day to come to school with a lighter step. Here I need to thank two people who were always there to support me in all my endeavors. I am so blessed to have this opportunity to thank publicly Msgr. Tony for all his support. It never mattered how I felt, he would always lift my spirits. Msgr. - thank you.
And secondly, I thank Josephine McIvor for her unwavering support through many ups and downs. She will always hold a special place in my heart. Jo – thank you.
I close with a saying I heard from one of Father Leo Clifford’s conferences – “God gave us a memory so that we could have roses in December. “ I thank God for the beautiful roses that I will always cherish – memories which will lift my spirit as I reach the winter of my life.
Submitted by Stefan L. Sumsky, Assumption School, on 2012-08-04.
Community involvement combines with environmental activism to make a real difference at Assumption School in Manchester. On the fourth, Saturday of every month, Sister Joan Marie Crapps, SCMC and a team of student and parent volunteers collect bottles and cans to take to a local recycling center. Local parishioners and involved citizens collect several hundred dollars in cans and bottles each month to help fund school activities.
Sister Joan Marie, a second grade teacher at Assumption, has been running a bottle drive much like this one for over 30 years. She began running the bottle drive at Holy Family Mother House in Baltic, shortly after Connecticut enacted its container deposit laws in 1978. She’s very modest about her long-standing program. “I saw a need and I filled it,” she humbly remarked when pressed. When Sister transferred to Assumption 5 years ago, she was eager to bring the bottle drive with her to her new home.
She is aided in her efforts by a dedicated team of volunteers. Together, they complete a variety of tasks, from sorting bottles and cans to placing signs advertising the event around the area. Tony Aufiero, father of a 2nd and 5th grader at Assumption, generously donates his time and energy to transport the numerous recyclables to a local processing center. Assisting with the drive just comes to Tony. “I’m not sure how I got started with Sister, but I really enjoy helping out,” he said. Plans are in the works to give students the chance to complete their community service hours by helping out at the drive as well. “We need to get more people involved,” Sister Joan Marie said.
The volunteers aren’t the only ones helping with Sister’s bottle drive. Throughout the three hour drive, donations are dropped off by people both young and old. One couple with a station wagon full of recyclables confessed that they don’t use many bottles themselves, but go “dumpster diving” to help both the school and the environment.
The proceeds from the bottle drive are put to good use by Assumption school, as well. The majority of the funds raised goes in the (scholarship fund) to help students who otherwise wouldn’t be able to enjoy the benefits of a Catholic school education. This year $2000 were raised for the scholarship fund. The remaining money is used to buy myriad essential school supplies, ranging from bibles and books about Saints to new headphones and computer programs.
Students and faculty at Assumption Middle School in Manchester are doing their part to keep their town green with a bottle drive. And they’re always looking for more volunteers. “We need to get more people involved,” Sister Joan Marie said. If you’re interested in helping out, the drives resume on the fourth Saturday of August.