From Fr. Mike Palmer, CSC

By |November 15th, 2019|

In the 3+ years that I’ve been here at Christ the King, I have been blessed to share my life and my life’s work with all of you. However, for the past five years, I have been heavily involved in a ministry that many of you may not know about: the Army Chaplaincy.

I first felt the call to this ministry before I even entered the seminary. While I was in high school, I heard several of my relatives speak about their Army deployments, and they often lamented the scarcity (if not complete absence) of Catholic Chaplains while they were overseas. It broke my heart to imagine so many men and women enduring danger without the aid of Mass, Confession, or spiritual guidance from a priest. As I progressed through the seminary, I learned that Holy Cross has a rich tradition of military chaplains, which began with Fr. William Corby, C.S.C. serving as a Union Chaplain in the Civil War. After much prayer and discussion with the seminary staff, I joined the Army Chaplain Corps in June 2014 and became a full-fledged Army Chaplain in June 2017.

I do not have nearly enough room in this column to describe everything I do as a Chaplain, but it is best summarized by the Chaplain Corps’ mission: to “Bring God to Soldiers, and Soldiers to God.” As a Battalion Chaplain, I travel to a nearby Army Reserve unit once a month and train with the soldiers there for a full weekend (and sometimes longer for field exercises). I have found great joy in celebrating Mass and Confession for Catholics out in the field, as well as providing spiritual guidance for soldiers who may […]

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Bishop Rhoades’ Visit

By |November 9th, 2019|


Just a couple of weeks ago, Bishop Rhoades paid a visit to our school.  (There was a great article with lots of pictures in Today’s Catholic, the diocesan newspaper, so I encourage you to check it out.)  The bishop periodically makes these visits to the schools in his diocese so that he gets a chance to see the ministry of Catholic education firsthand.  That’s no small task, given that there are more than 40 Catholic schools in this diocese!

The highlight of the day was certainly our all-school Mass with the Bishop that morning. He got a good taste of what our weekly school Mass looks like, with students participating in the Mass as cantors, lectors, servers, choir members and gift bearers, as well as teachers and staff assisting as EMHC’s.  The entire student congregation sang and prayed with a lot of gusto!

The rest of the day was spent visiting individual classrooms, and given the fact that we have 479 students, that took just about the whole day. There was no formal agenda; the Bishop just went from classroom to classroom to see what was going on and to chat with the students.  He took the opportunity to quiz them on what they were studying in religion, to lead them in the Hail Mary in Spanish, and to inadvertently give away some answers on the math quiz that our 7th graders were taking when he stopped in their room!  He also fielded questions from the students, and you never know what you’re going to get when you open up that door!  There were lots of questions about how he became a bishop and about the clothes he wore, with some personal questions about his favorite color […]

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Mass of Remembrance

By |November 3rd, 2019|

November is a month when the Church encourages us to pray for the dead.  Praying for the dead is one of the spiritual works of mercy that all of us are expected to practice, and we believe that our prayers for the dead are very meaningful, particularly for the souls in purgatory.  We pray for them with the hope that they will one day pray for us, taking their place with the saints and angels in heaven.

Our annual Mass of Remembrance will be this Monday, November 4th, at 7pm.  (We usually have this Mass on All Souls Day.  This year, however, All Souls falls on a Saturday, so we’ve moved the Mass of Remembrance to Monday.)  The Mass of Remembrance is a longstanding tradition at Christ the King.  Each year, we invite all those who have lost a loved one over the past year, and we pray by name for those parishioners who have died this year.  It is a beautiful opportunity for family, friends and fellow parishioners to gather together to support one another and to pray for their deceased loved ones.  I know this is often a very meaningful evening for those who are still grieving their loved one’s death.

Our prayers for the dead are a real act of Christian hope.  If we didn’t believe in heaven, there would be no reason to pray!  Our prayers for those who have died express our belief that there is a life beyond this life, and that Christ’s Passion, death and resurrection have made it possible for us to have a well-founded hope for this eternal joy.  Every time we pray that God will welcome our loved ones into heaven, we are […]

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Sunday Homilies Online

By |October 31st, 2019|

HOMILIES ONLINE
Sunday homilies from Fr. Steve, Fr. Mike, Deacon Gil and Deacon Joe can now be heard online by visiting https://soundcloud.com/user-560765757.

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From Fr. Steve Lacroix, CSC

By |October 26th, 2019|


As we’ve been mentioning at Mass for the past couple of weeks, this Tuesday (October 29th) we’ll have the opportunity to gather to discuss Bishop Robert Barron’s new book, Letter to a Suffering Church.  Discussions will be offered at 9am and 7pm in the Youth Room, and all are welcome.

One hundred copies of this book were donated to us so that we could make it available to as many parishioners as possible, so I hope many of you have been able to read it.  It’s a brief but powerful reflection on the effect that the abuse scandal in the Church has had on people’s faith.  Bishop Barron frankly addresses the crisis of faith that this scandal has caused, prompting many faithful Catholics to question why they should remain in the Church.  Bishop Barron doesn’t sugarcoat the scandal or make excuses for poor leadership, but his answer is that the best response is to stay and fight rather than to jump ship.  He offers a sobering but compelling explanation of why the things that make the Church good and beautiful and holy are not things that any sinful human being can destroy.  My own take on this is that it would be tragic to let the sinful actions of clergymen deprive you of the Eucharist and the other graces that Jesus offers us through His Church.

Several parishioners have talked to me at different points over the past year to let me know about the struggles that these failures in Church leadership have caused for them.  Because of leaders who abused the trust that was given to them, some people struggle to trust the human face of the Church at all.  It’s […]

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Annual Bishop Appeal

By |October 12th, 2019|

The Bishop’s Appeal is upon us!  This weekend (as we usually do at this time of the year) we will show the appeal video at all Masses, followed by an opportunity for all parishioners to fill out a pledge card to offer their support to the appeal.  (Please note that there’s also an ongoing giving option which might be more convenient for many of you.  Visit diocesefwsb.org/aba for online giving.  This year, the goal set for us by the diocese is $159,766.75.

Some of you have asked me about the appeal in relation to the capital campaign.  As you recall, last year we didn’t show the appeal video or give pledge cards because we rolled last year’s goal into our campaign goal.  (We still paid our goal to the diocese; it just came from our campaign funds.)  This year, however, we’re back to the normal routine.  I know that many of you are still paying on your capital campaign pledges, so I simply ask you to discern what pledge is right for your family at this time.

The Bishop’s Appeal is an important source of funding for the diocese’s operating budget, paying for items such as the education of seminarians and the diocesan employees who support our Catholic schools, run ministry programs and manage their business operations.  Furthermore, any amount pledged over our goal comes directly back to the parish, which is always a huge help.  Thanks so much for your generosity to the Bishop’s Appeal in the past, and I’m grateful for whatever you’re able to pledge this year.

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Year-End Financial Information

By |October 5th, 2019|

I hope that you’ll take some time to look at the insert in today’s bulletin, which details our year-end financial information the last fiscal year.  (Our fiscal year ended on June 30, 2019, but I always wait until our Finance Council has the chance to review these statements before publishing this information.)  We want to be as transparent as possible about parish finances; our parishioners sacrifice a lot for our parish, and you should know how your money is being spent.

The past fiscal year, of course, included our capital campaign.  I am so grateful for the overwhelming response to this campaign, and I know that we are all eagerly awaiting the fruits of this campaign as we watch our new addition being built.  The capital campaign is not included in the bulletin insert; instead, this insert deals with our regular financial operations, which continued as normal during the campaign.  While our collections were down a bit, I think this is typical of a capital campaign year, and I greatly appreciate the effort that parishioners made to keep up their weekly giving while still supporting the campaign.

As you look at these statements, you can see that there is room for improvement in our financial position.  On the one hand, we are able to pay our bills and maintain our facilities thanks to our parishioners’ support, as well as to discipline in our spending.  We are also diligent about preparing for future capital expenditures, so we have been able to stay ahead of these expenses.  On the other hand, though, we continue to run a deficit.  While we’ve cut this deficit over the last two years, it’s still not sustainable in the long-term.  Our priority is to […]

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Diaper Drive and Women’s Care Center

By |September 21st, 2019|

This weekend we begin the Diaper Drive for the Women’s Care Center, which will continue for the next three weekends (through October 6th).  You’ll see a box in the vestibule to collect diapers, which will then be distributed to clients at the Women’s Care Center, who earn them through a variety of activities, such as attending Parenting Classes or Baby Well-Visits.  It’s always one of my favorite events of the year because it’s so easy to do – as simple as picking up an extra bag of diapers on your regular trip to the grocery store – and yet it makes such an incredible difference in the lives of expectant mothers who might feel scared or alone.  I especially love hearing stories from parents who say that their young children reminded them to pick up diapers while they were at the store; it gives me great hope that these young children are learning that every baby is a gift to be loved and treasured.  Our parish has always supported this drive enthusiastically; last year we collected a whopping 3,789 diapers!

The work of the Women’s Care Center hits even closer to home for us here at Christ the King.  Many of our parishioners are involved in the Center as counselors, volunteers or fundraisers.  Our 3rd grade class has adopted the Center as its partner in our School Service Program, and they work with them on various projects throughout the year.  And the Center’s Volunteer President, Ann Manion, is a long-time parishioner.  Here’s a note of thanks from Ann about this year’s Diaper Drive.

Thousands of moms and babies like Reannin and Agnes are helped through the Christ the King annual diaper drive.  Because of you, moms choose […]

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Our Lady of Sorrows

By |September 14th, 2019|

Today, September 15th, is the day each year when we remember Mary under the title Our Lady of Sorrows.  Our Lady of Sorrows is the patroness of the Congregation of Holy Cross, so this seems like a good day to share a little bit of Holy Cross spirituality with all of you.
This title for our Blessed Mother recalls her Seven Sorrows:
The Prophecy of Simeon

The Flight to Egypt
The Losing of the Child Jesus in the Temple
Mary Meeting Jesus on the Road to Calvary
The Crucifixion
Jesus Is Taken Down from the Cross
Jesus Is Laid in the Tomb

It may sound strange to name a feast after a title that sounds so sad, but we in Holy Cross see it differently.  After all, we profess the Cross of Christ to be our only hope, and Our Lady of Sorrows helps to show us how.  Our Constitutions say it this way: “There stood by the cross of Jesus his mother Mary, who knew grief and was a Lady of Sorrows. She is our special patroness, a woman who bore much, she could not understand and who stood fast. To her many sons and daughters, whose devotions ought to bring them often to Her side, she tells much of this daily cross and its daily hope.”
We are reminded that Mary, even though she was conceived without original sin, didn’t have a perfect life.  She still suffered much, through no fault of her own.  She knew what it was like to have to flee your homeland, to worry about your child, and to watch Him suffer.  And yet through all of these sufferings, her faith never wavered.  And because her faith was so strong, she persevered through them to the perfect […]

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September 1 Construction Update

By |September 1st, 2019|

Currently the construction crew is still working on a staircase that will connect the new facility with the Fr. Jones Room.  They’ve excavated the site and are now working on the stairwell.  You may have noticed a temporary wall that’s been put up in the Fr. Jones Room so that it can be used during construction.

Additionally, they’ve completed the move of the chiller from ground level to the sacristy roof and are continuing the installation of the foundation.

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