REFLECTION

6 May 2018

 Sixth Sunday of Easter

    In this week’s Gospel (Jn 15:9-17), Jesus expresses his desire to fill us with HIS joy – divine joy! He tells his disciples, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy might be complete.” The truth is, our joy can never be complete unless it participates in Jesus’ joy which is the joy of God. This is just another way of saying what St. Augustine famously said many years ago: “Our hearts are restless, until they rest in God.” We, as human beings created by God and in his image, are made to live in communion with God, nothing else can fulfill this basic human need; nothing else can “complete” our joy.

Everyone is looking for joy just as everyone is looking for love; but, as the old Waylon Jennings song says, many today are “looking for love [joy] in all the wrong places.”  Pope Paul VI wrote,

“Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the occasions of pleasure, but finds great difficulty in giving          birth to happiness. For happiness has its origin    elsewhere: it is a spiritual thing. Money, comfort, hygiene,        material security etc., may often not be lacking, but            nevertheless, despite these advantages, boredom,     suffering and sadness are frequently to be found                supervening in the lives of many people.”

The question arises: where do we find this illusive “complete” joy that Jesus promises? Let us look at three clues from today’s Gospel and try to discover how they may teach us the path to divine joy:

1) Jesus said, “As the Father loves me, so I also love you.                Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you         will remain in my love.”

  1.  Divine joy is the offspring of knowing we are loved                                 by God. We need to hear Jesus speak to us                                 personally: “I love you.” Jesus died for me; he wants                                 to save me; he wants to forgive me. If Jesus the                                              Creator and Lord of the universe were to physically                                    walk up to you and say, “I love you as the Father                                    loves me” would you not be moved with deep joy?                                     The fact is, he DOES say that to us at every Mass!                                                 Look at Jesus on the Cross, why is he there? His                                deeds prove his love!
  2. Divine joy is the fruit of remaining in his love by                                      keeping his commandments. If we disregard the                                 moral law which comes from God and is articulated                                    with divine authority in his holy Catholic Church we                                             will always carry deep in our souls a tension, a                                            disconnect of some kind with God. By embracing all                                       God’s commandments – all the teachings of his                                  Church – we embrace God himself and live in                                      harmony with him. This is true joy!

2) Jesus said, “This is my commandment: love one            another as I have loved you.”

  1.  To the extent that we do NOT love others as Jesus                                 has loved us, we will NOT know divine joy. St.                                 Augustine said, “To claim to love God and not                                             neighbor is like embracing a man and stamping on                                         his feet.” We cannot share Jesus’ joy if we’re                                               stamping on his feet! Divine joy is the fruit of loving                                          others as Jesus has loved us.

3) Jesus said, “It was not you who chose me, but I who     chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will         remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name   he may give to you.”

  1. Divine joy is the fruit of knowing we have been                                        personally chosen and appointed by Jesus for a                                 divine mission. This means our lives have sublime                                     meaning and purpose which inspires hope. Divine                                         joy is the fruit of divinely inspired hope.
  2. Divine joy is the fruit of knowing we can talk to                                       God as our loving Father and he always hears us.                                 Divine joy is the fruit of faith-filled, confident, prayer.

Mother Theresa of Calcutta beautifully summarizes all I have written as only she can:

“A joyful heart is like a sunshine of God’s love, the hope   of eternal happiness, a burning flame of God. So if we               allow Him to live His life in us, we will experience that joy.   And if we pray, we will become that sunshine of God’s              love–in our home, the place where we live, and in the      world at large. . . .  The world today is hungry for the joy            that comes from a pure heart, for a pure heart can see          God.”

May the joy of Jesus be in us all, and may our joy be complete!

Your Servant in Christ,

Fr. Terry Staples

 

Pray for the Sick and other Special Needs

Mass Intentions Next Two Weeks

(May 5-May 11)                       (May 12-May 18)

Sat      5:00pm      Elizabeth Harbin                         +Charles Arruda

Sun:    8:00am   +Doris Zinna                                             Parishioners

10:30am      Parishioners                                     +Ted Przybocki

Mon:   8:00am       Annie Miller                                       +Janet Keffer

Tue:    8:30am    +Helen Prokupek                  +Joe & +John Lagemann

Wed: 12:15pm    +Paul Dolenc                                        +Amy Palmieri

Fri:    12:15pm   +Mary Nolan                          +Anthony Apostolaros

Pray for our Loved Ones in the Armed Forces

 

Food Bank: The May items are toilet paper and jelly.

Congratulations to Our First Communicant: Michael Barberio

Epiphany Catholic School in Culpeper- Our Parish School

Following an intensive three day visit by eight educators from Northern Virginia, it was unanimously recommended that Epiphany Catholic School be fully accredited for the next six years.  Accreditation is granted by the Virginia Catholic Education Association through a rigorous process approved by the Virginia Department of Education. The Design for Excellence Visiting Team was so impressed by our students, faculty, facility and programs that they raised eight of our benchmark scores to a higher level than the grades we had given ourselves during the self-study process leading up to their evaluation. Now accepting applications for pre-K through Grade 8 for the 2018-2019 school year. For more information, please visit our website: www.epiphanycatholicschool.org, or 540-825-9017 or office@epiphanycatholicschool.org.

St. Patrick Catholic School, Fredericksburg, VA

Now accepting applications for Pre-K through Grade 8 for the 2018-2019 school year. For more information, please visit our website: www.saintpatrickschoolva.org, or contact the Principal, George Elliott, at 540-786-2277 or gelliott@saintpatrickschoolva.org.

Charlottesville Catholic School- Charlottesville, VA

Now accepting applications for Pre-K through Grade 8 for the 2018-2019 school year. For more information, please visit our website: www.cvillecatholic.org, or contact the Admissions Coordinator, Katrina Kuhn, at 434-964-0400 or k.kuhn@cvillecatholic.org. CCS is also seeking qualified candidates to fill a number of open positions for the 2018-19 school year. Please visit www.cvillecatholic.org for the complete job listings.

St. Michael the Archangel- Fredericksburg, VA

St. Michael the Archangel High School is now accepting applications for the 2018-2019 school year. For more information, please visit our website:  www.saintmichaelhs.org, or contact us at  info@saintmichaelhs.org or 540-548-8748.

 

The Summit Academy- Fredericksburg, VA

A classical College Preparatory High School Education Rooted in the Catholic Tradition. Now accepting Applications for the 2018-2019 school year. Please visit info@thesummitva.org or contact us at www.thesummitva.org

 

FIVE CAR RAFFLE IN PROGRESS!   

The tickets for the annual 5 Car Raffle have been mailed. This is the same raffle that we have always participated in. You will notice one change: the ticket returns are being processed at All Saints Church this year. This is a new requirement by the Department of Charitable Gaming. The raffle continues to benefit our parish and many other charitable causes throughout the diocese, as it has in the past. We hope that you will support our efforts by buying or selling your tickets.

 

We will celebrate St. Isidore’s feast day on May 15

Please join with our parish family Tuesday, May 15th, to celebrate the feast day of our patron saint, St. Isidore the Farmer. We will begin our celebration with Vespers at 6:30pm, followed by a procession around the church, then we’ll feast together at a potluck dinner. Please sign up in the Gathering Area, and

we hope to see you there!

Calling all St. Isidore 2018 Graduates!

If you are a parishioner and have a child graduating from high school in 2018, please contact the office with the following information: Date of graduation, school or homeschool, future plans and where they will be in the fall. There are forms on the office window ledge that you can fill out. We will recognize our graduates at a reception on June 3rd, after the 10:30 Mass, so please respond by Sunday, May 27th for your graduate to be included.

“Sing to Mary” Concert Change

The Donna Cori Gibson “Sing to Mary” concert has been rescheduled for September 9th at 1:00pm. Our Mary statue should be in place so that we can have a beautiful dedication ceremony in conjunction with the concert.

24th Annual Military Services Memorial Mass

The Archdiocese for the Military Services will hold its 24th Annual Memorial Mass on Sunday, May 20 at 4:30 p.m. honoring the men and women of the Armed Forces. The liturgy will be held at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, 4th Street & Michigan Avenue, NE Washington, DC. The principal celebrant and homilist will be the Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio, J.C.D., Archbishop for the Military Services. Parking is limited and carpooling is advised. Dress: Civilian, business attire; Military: service dress uniform please. To request seating or to obtain additional information, please visit:

https://www.milarch.org/memorial-mass/laity-registration/

 

A message from Diane Russell:

Thank you to everyone who has prayed for my son, Dale Snyder, Jr. He has been miraculously completely healed!

There will be a blood drive in honor of Christa-Marie Pearl Gilbreth on Tuesday, May 15, from 12pm-4pm, at Freedom Hall at the Pavilion in Shenandoah Crossing Resort. To sign up, please call Norma Miss 540-832-9535, or visit https://donateblood.vablood.org.

 

Saturday         Readers:     Daniel Strogis, Patricia Harbin (EM)

May 5              Ushers:       John Phelps, Larry Deeds

5:00PM    Altar Servers:     Christopher & Peter, Brendan

Sunday           Readers:      Daphnie Sowa,                           (EM)

May 6                 Ushers:       Mike Monticello, Gordon Genovese

8:00am    Altar Servers:      Grace, Eric, Jamie

Sunday           Readers:      Jesse Evans, Joyce Cyrus (EM)

May 6              Ushers:       Ron Lloyd, Bill Saunders

10:30am   Altar Servers:  Danni, Daniel, Jackson

Counters:     John & Carol Keeney, Jesse Evans

____________________________________________________________

Saturday         Readers:     Joe Pauli, Cheryl Pauli (EM)

May 12              Ushers:     John Robert Clemente, Tom McDonnell

5:00PM    Altar Servers:     Isaac, Adrian, & Vince

Sunday           Readers:      James Dillon, Mike Monticello (EM)

May 13                 Ushers:     Romie Powell, Mark Hogan

8:00am    Altar Servers:      John, Daniel, Shane

Sunday           Readers:      Jesse Evans, Ray Lonick (EM)

May 13              Ushers:      Craig Lawson, Scott Johnson

10:30am   Altar Servers:      Christopher & Peter

Counters:     Chris & Tina Riley, Thomas Allsbury