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January 24, 2020
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Entries for March 2016

20

Food & Feet on Holy Thursday

At the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday (7:00 pm, March 24) we will again be collecting non-perishable food items for the poor in addition to our monetary collection.  Everyone will be invited to come forward to present both the money and food which will go to a local pantry. 

We will also have the Washing of Feet as part of the Mass that evening. This is a very simple and a great way to participate in a special way in this great Mass. If you want to participate, you need to call the parish office by Monday, March 21 and you will need to be at Church by 6:30 pm for instructions.

Speaking of feet, we are also looking for people who are willing to walk in the procession with the Blessed Sacrament to the reservation chapel at the end of this Mass.  If you want to participate, please call the parish office by Monday, March 21.  You will need to be at church by 6:30 pm to receive instructions.

 

Holy Week

Holy Week is not a theatrical play depicting the events of Jesus’ Passion, Death and Resurrection.  The Church’s intent is not to re-enact the entry into Jerusalem, the washing of the disciples’ feet, or His Death on the cross.  That would be a Passion Play.  The liturgy focuses on the saving mystery unfolded by the events in Christ’s life.  The unique liturgies of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday each help us recall the single mystery of our redemption.  In each we are reminded of how we are changed by the Lord’s institution of the Holy Eucharist, His Death and His Resurrection. 

 

This week we celebrate the most essential feasts of the Catholic faith.  On each day there is a single liturgy (the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, the Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion and the Easter Vigil) so that the whole community can gather as one in remembrance of Him.  While we may have other prayer opportunities on these days, other traditions, nothing is more important to us than celebrating these three liturgies as a full community.  All of us should participate in these liturgies.     

  

Palm Sunday, The Passion of the Lord

March 20 

Masses: Saturday 4:30 p.m.

Sunday 8:00, 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 Noon

Incense is used at the 4:30 p.m., 8:00 and 10:00 a.m. Masses.

 

Holding palm branches we begin Holy Week.  The palm is a symbol of the victory and hope that we celebrate during these most sacred days.  Each Mass will begin with the blessing of the palm and then a “solemn entrance” to the altar.  At the 10:00 a.m. Mass, the young children will be part of the blessing before going to their Liturgy of the Word.  The main focus of the Liturgy of the Word is the proclamation of the Passion Narrative according to Saint Luke.


Holy Thursday—March 24

7:00 p.m.    Mass of the Lord Supper

                 Incense is used throughout this Mass.

 

Today no Mass can be celebrated in parishes except the Mass of the Lord’s Supper.  This evening ends Lent and the Church begins the Sacred Paschal Triduum, the celebration of the Paschal Mystery.  This Mass commemorates the institution of the Eucharist and the priesthood.  Most people recall two unique parts of this liturgy.  The first is the washing of feet by the priest as a remembrance of Jesus washing the feet of the disciples (which is the Gospel passage for the Mass) and his call to service of others.  The second element is the solemn procession to the reservation chapel with the Blessed Sacrament that will be used for Holy Communion on Good Friday.  Both special elements are very moving as we pray together. We are all encouraged to spend some time “keeping vigil” before the Blessed Sacrament this evening. Everyone leaves the church in silence.


Good Friday—March 25

8:30 a.m. -  Morning Prayer

12:00 Noon -  Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion

 

On this day the Church recalls the Death of the Lord.  Our day will begin with Morning Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours as a way to prepare ourselves for the solemn Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion.  Morning Prayer consists of a hymn, psalms that are sung and intercessions. 

 

On Good Friday the Church does not celebrate Mass but a unique ritual to recall the Death of the Lord and to venerate the Cross as the sign of God’s mercy.  The Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion is not a funeral-type liturgy; its solemnity comes from the realization of the great Mystery we recall, the meaning of the Lord’s death for us.  It is a somber, stark liturgy which begins with the ministers prostrating themselves before the altar for silent prayer.  The Liturgy of the Word is highlighted by the reading of the Passion according to Saint John; then follows the General Intercessions, the Veneration of the Cross, and a Communion service.  The atmosphere begun on Holy Thursday permeates Good Friday, too, as everyone gathers and leaves in silence.


Holy Saturday—March 26

9:00 p.m. - The Easter Vigil

Incense is used throughout this Mass.

 

The Easter Vigil is the most beautiful and most important liturgy of the year.  The quiet of Holy Saturday is broken when the Church gathers around the Easter fire outside the church building.  Here the Paschal Candle is inscribed, blessed and lit.  It is the light of the Paschal candle that leads everyone into the darkened church.  The Light of Christ dispels the darkness! 

 

After the deacon sings the Easter Proclamation, the Liturgy of the Word follows.  Since this is a Vigil, there are more readings from Scripture than usual.  With each, the story of our salvation is unfolded until the Gospel proclaims that

Jesus is risen from the dead.  Then we celebrate the Sacraments of Initiation: baptism, confirmation and Eucharist.  This is the evening when those 7 years old and older are fully initiated into the Church.  It is so significant that on the night we celebrate new life in Christ’s Resurrection that these people get to be fully immersed in His divine life.  In the course of the liturgy the entire congregation renews their own baptismal promises.

 

Easter Sunday—March 27

Masses: 8:00, 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 Noon.

Incense is used at the 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 noon Masses.

 

The celebration of the Lord’s resurrection continues on Easter Sunday.  Today we begin the 50 days of the Easter season.  Masses will include the renewal of baptismal promises and the sprinkling of the congregation with holy water to recall our life in the Risen Christ.

 

03

DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY
April 3, 2016

3:00 pm in Church

Join us today at 3:00 pm when St. James Church will celebrate the Feast of Divine Mercy.  This is a great opportunity to obtain the complete forgiveness of all sins and punishment - a straight ticket to Heaven!

This Feast of Mercy is God's great gift to humanity in preparation for the Second Coming of Jesus. We need to recognize that this Feast of Mercy is a preparation for the Judgment and a modern-day Feast of Atonement, just like in the Old Testament. To be prepared to receive this incredible and beautiful Mercy of Our Lord Jeasus Christ: 1) go to confession within 20 days before/after Divine Mercy Sunday, 2) receive Holy Communion on this day, 3) perform an act of mercy and 4) venerate the image.  Visit www.divinemercysunday.com for more information.

13

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL

This year St. James the Greater Vacation Bible School is scheduled on Monday through Friday, June 13-17 from 9:30 am-Noon.  Students will participate in uncovering archaeological treasures that will lead them to discovery of God's gift of Bible stories.

Children entering Kindergarten through Grade 4 will sing, dance, listen to or watch stories, and learn lessons from Holy Scripture.  They will pray, create reminders of important concepts and enjoy snacks and games.  Lessons will focus on increasing knowledge of the Catholic Faith, as well as that of the call to service of family, friends, neighbors, community and most importantly, God.  The cost is $20.00 per child and registration forms are available online (click below), in church, or in the Parish Office. 

VIRTUS ® approved volunteers are needed and welcome!  Adults are needed to lead groups, and to help with refreshments.  This is a great opportunity for junior high and/or high school students to accumulate needed service hours!

Please contact us in the Religious Education Office (741-5335) to volunteer or for additional information.  We hope to see you at this year's St. James Vacation Bible School!

Vacation Bible School Registration Form