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Parish Daily Update 1/4/21

Dear Parish Family,

“We know certainly that our God calls to a holy life.  We know that he gives us every grace, every abundant grace; and though we are so weak of ourselves, this grace is able to carry us through every obstacle and difficulty.”        ~St Elizabeth Ann Seton

Happy New Year to you all!!  I hope your Christmas and holidays were joyous and filled with many blessings!!!  As we begin our 2021, I remind you to call the office – 601-856-2054 – Monday thru Thursday, 8:30 – 4:00 – to make your weekly Mass reservations. 

I also want to thank each of you, once again, for your patience and cooperation as we continue to move forward with our diocesan protocols.  While it is inconvenient to wear masks and social-distance, our care and concern for each other and others in our community make it worth the discomfort and frustration!!  Stay safe and healthy!!

BUSINESS:  Our offertory for Christmas and 12/27:

General                                                $14,662.33

Building                                             $100.00

Retired Religious                               $500.00

Christmas Flowers                           $195.00

Christmas Giving Tree                     $85.00

Germanfest                                      $1,000.00

Christmas Offering                           $5,175.00

And for 12/31:

General                                              $13,770.00

Building                                             $25.00

Cemetery                                          $250.00

Christmas Offering                          $310.00

Charity                                              $5,000.00

The opportunities for your offertory donations are as follows:

                ~Place your offering in the basket as you come to Mass;

~Mail checks directly to 127 Church Rd., Madison, MS 39110;

~Your bank’s online bill-pay page, having the bank send a check to the

  church;

~ACH Auto-draft of your account.  Call the office – 601-856-2054 – and we will

  send you the form to have that set up.

~Texting your contribution to 601-391-6645; or

~https://giving.parishsoft.com/app/giving/stjosephgluckstadt for on-line giving. 

Thank you for your continued support of our parish!

God bless,

Pam

Tuesday After Epiphany January 5, 2021

Memorial of Saint John Neumann, Bishop

First Reading:  1 John 4:7-10

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God. Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love. In this way the love of God was revealed to us: God sent his only-begotten Son into the world so that we might have life through him. In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.

Responsorial Psalm:  Ps 72:1-2, 3-4, 7-8

R. Lord, every nation on earth will adore you.
O God, with your judgment endow the king,
and with your justice, the king’s son;
He shall govern your people with justice
and your afflicted ones with judgment.
R.    Lord, every nation on earth will adore you.
The mountains shall yield peace for the people,
and the hills justice.
He shall defend the afflicted among the people,
save the children of the poor.
R.    Lord, every nation on earth will adore you.
Justice shall flower in his days,
and profound peace, till the moon be no more.
May he rule from sea to sea,
and from the River to the ends of the earth.
R.    Lord, every nation on earth will adore you.

Gospel:  Mark 6:34-44

When Jesus saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them,
for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things. 
By now it was already late and his disciples approached him and said, “This is a deserted place and it is already very late.  Dismiss them so that they can go to the surrounding farms and villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 
He said to them in reply, “Give them some food yourselves.” 
But they said to him, “Are we to buy two hundred days’ wages worth of food and give it to them to eat?”  He asked them, “How many loaves do you have?  Go and see.” 
And when they had found out they said, “Five loaves and two fish.” So, he gave orders to have them sit down in groups on the green grass. The people took their places in rows by hundreds and by fifties. Then, taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; he also divided the two fish among them all. They all ate and were satisfied.  And they picked up twelve wicker baskets full of fragments and what was left of the fish. Those who ate of the loaves were five thousand men.

Homily

. . everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.  1 John 4:7-10

“To know God,” the writer of today’s first reading says. Not just to know about God, but to know God.

We know about God as the Creator of every cell and molecule that gives form to all creation. We know about God as the final Arbiter of all judgments and blessings. We know about God through all the stories and wonders recounted in the Bible.

But the writer of John’s letters calls us to a deeper understanding of God – and the only way to really know God is through love: in love, we come to understand why God put all of creation into motion; in love, we begin to realize that we and every soul are held in the hand and heart of God; in love, we see the world as God sees it and begin to realize God’s vision for humankind.

So, may we begin to know God as more than the object of our prayers or as the mighty Lord of Scripture or the mysterious Center of the cosmos too remote from the human experience to make a difference in our lives. May we deepen our relationship with God, the God who reveals himself in selfless charity, in humble justice, in sacrificial peace.

May we come to know God as God knows us.

Illuminate our vision, O God, that we may come to know you as you have been revealed by your Christ: to know you as the source of all life, to know you as the father of us all, to know you as that love that you breathed into our hearts. May we come to know your love in our love for one another, your compassion in our sacrifices for the sake reconciliation and healing, your peace in our work for justice and mercy.

An Act of Spiritual Communion
My Jesus, I believe that You are present
in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things,
and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,
I ask You to come spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You, trusting that you are already there and I unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.  Amen. 

Saint John Neumann, Bishop

This American saint was born in Bohemia in 1811. He was looking forward to being ordained in 1835 when the bishop decided there would be no more ordinations. It is difficult for us to imagine now, but Bohemia was overstocked with priests. John wrote to bishops all over Europe but the story was the same everywhere no one wanted any more priests. John was sure he was called to be a priest but all the doors to follow that vocation seemed to close in his face.

But John didn’t give up. He had learned English by working in a factory with English-speaking workers so he wrote to the bishops in America. Finally, the bishop in New York agreed to ordain him. In order to follow God’s call to the priesthood John would have to leave his home forever and travel across the ocean to a new and rugged land.

In New York, John was one of 36 priests for 200,000 Catholics. John’s parish in western New York stretched from Lake Ontario to Pennsylvania. His church had no steeple or floor but that didn’t matter because John spent most of his time traveling from village to village, climbing mountains to visit the sick, staying in garrets and taverns to teach, and celebrating the Mass at kitchen tables.

Because of the work and the isolation of his parish, John longed for community and so joined the Redemptorists, a congregation of priests and brothers dedicated to helping the poor and most abandoned.

John was appointed bishop of Philadelphia in 1852. As bishop, he was the first to organize a diocesan Catholic school system. A founder of Catholic education in this country, he increased the number of Catholic schools in his diocese from two to 100.

John never lost his love and concern for the people — something that may have bothered the elite of Philadelphia. On one visit to a rural parish, the parish priest picked him up in a manure wagon. Seated on a plank stretched over the wagon’s contents, John joked, “Have you ever seen such an entourage for a bishop!”

The ability to learn languages that had brought him to America led him to learn Spanish, French, Italian, and Dutch so he could hear confessions in at least six languages. When Irish immigration started, he learned Gaelic so well that one Irish woman remarked, “Isn’t it grand that we have an Irish bishop!”

Once on a visit to Germany, he came back to the house he was staying in soaked by rain. When his host suggested he change his shoes, John remarked, “The only way I could change my shoes is by putting the left one on the right foot and the right one on the left foot. This is the only pair I own.”

John died on January 5, 1860 at the age of 48. He was canonized in 1977.