Why is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception being celebrated on Monday? In the church, some celebrations are understood to have a priority of celebration over others. A feast would be celebrated before a Memorial; a holy day is celebrated before a weekday in ordinary time. The Second Sunday of Advent has priority over the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. Thus the weekend liturgies are using the readings for the Second Sunday of Advent.
Since the Immaculate Conception is the national patron of the United States as well as a holy day of obligation, this feast is not simply dropped from the calendar. The church has transferred its celebration to Monday, December 9. When the Feast of the Immaculate Conception is celebrated on its date of December 8, it is a holy day of obligation and it does not lose the obligation even when it occurs on Saturday or Monday. However, when it is transferred to December 9, it loses the character of obligation. With this in mind, the Monday Communion Service is scheduled as normal on December 9. A 5:30 p.m. Mass is also scheduled for those who desire to celebrate this important feast in the church. Please mark your calendars and plan to attend!
Tinsel or straw? Our parish has embarked upon this Advent Theme. The questions to consider: What is the focus of Advent? What is the vision in light of this focus? We are preparing for the second coming of Jesus. Where will we find him? What are the signs that we need to discover in order to know that he is in our midst? These are the questions seeking answers in these first couple of weeks of Advent. The challenge is to refocus our eyes from the decorations/consumerism (tinsel) of Christmas to the stable (straw). What is our image of the stable? What type of environment do we see in the stable? Who is present? Who comes to visit? Why are they changed by this encounter? If Christ is the “reason for the season,” then wrestling with these questions allows us to reconsider how we know Christ in the midst of Christmas.
The Advent Project fits well within our theme. When we consider the stable, can we envision that homeless people might be found in the stable? Would Christ smile upon them? How do we bring this smile of Christ to the homeless within Wausau? Reflecting upon your own answers to these questions, the Mission Service Committee invites support for the installation of showers at the Warming Center, transferred to a new location with Catholic Charities. Your support gives opportunity for a homeless person to have a warm shower, clean clothes for sleeping while their “day clothes” are washed and sent forth in the morning refreshed. Please consider supporting this project and helping reach the goal to pay for the new showers!
Progress is steady for our Diocesan Annual Appeal target. Please remember that reaching our goal by April 1 will result in a greater grant towards our Parish Support of Catholic Schools. Every donation, no matter what size, moves us closer to our goal!
A wish of God’s peace is extended to the family and friends of Edna Kolberg. Her funeral was on Friday, November 29. May our prayers support and encourage those who mourn. May she rest in peace!
May the blessings of God be showered upon you this week!