It was a week of Joy, Music, Love, Family, Friendship, Caring, Giving, Prayer & Blessings in our amazing parish.
It began with the beautiful lighting and blessing of our outdoor Christmas Creche so beautifully done by our Knights of Columbus, followed last Thursday by the lighting of our Parish Christmas tree. How joyous it was hearing more than 100 parishioners singing carols led by the accordion accompaniment of Andrew Puntel. And yum, that Best of Flourtown hot chocolate and all the baked goods afterward provided by our Samaritan Society and volunteers, capping an awesome day of parish togetherness!
Mass attendance throughout the Friday Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception was inspiring, as was the love and prayer of our friends at Bethlehem Village, where I celebrated Mass that day. Next came the absolutely astounding response to our Parish Giving Tree coordinated by Joan Dierkes, our tireless director of religious education. The goodness of your hearts answered the Christmas Wish Lists of hundreds of children near and far and I know it warms your hearts as it does mine. A Narthex-full of love of neighbor!
And there was more! Andrew, Guna and the Festival Choir and Children’s Choir delighting hundreds at “A Celtic Christmas,” our parish Christmas Concert of Scripture and Song. Wowwwwww ! As I shared at the 5 pm Mass Sunday, it should be a must for your 2018 Christmas calendars! A beautiful, spirited way to start the season! Thank you, all!
Finally, a big reason to smile in pride came in my email box this week as the archdiocese sent congratulations and gratitude to all who helped St. Genevieve exceed our parish goal ($43,577) in the annual Catholic Charities Appeal by raising $45,840 to date. No surprise here, my friends. How blessed I am to have you all! Just as the children, elderly, and families in need are blessed by all you provide to them through your giving.
One of my favorite personal charities is Archbishop Chaput’s Christmas Party for the children of Catholic Social Services and Catholic Charities. I will see all of you in the smiles and laughter of those children this year! You have already made this a very memorable Advent for me as your “new” pastor (six months already?), with so many more memories to come in the next few weeks.
- Our caroling (social after) to our homebound Dec. 17 after the 5 pm Mass.
- Decorating the Church for Christmas Dec. 22-23.
- Trimming our Parish Christmas tree with your family ornaments Dec. 22-23 and blessing the tree at 10:15 Mass on Dec 24.
- And Christmas Masses! (Sunday, Christmas Eve and Christmas)!
Prepare the Way of the Lord!