This weekend, we welcome at all four Masses a guest homilist, Fr. Ivan Trujillo, who will preach about the annual Mission Appeal. The special second collection this weekend will be designated for the support of the Catholic Missions in Bolivia. Please be generous.
The Catholic Charities Drive continues through June. Our parish is still about $7,000 short of its goal of $34,100. If you have already contributed to Catholic Charities this year, thank you. If not yet, I encourage you to do so soon. Please show “0507 Bl. Sacr. Tonawanda” on your check to assure our parish gets the credit. Thank you for your generous support.
The pilgrimage to all the sites connected with the Divine Mercy in Lithuania and Poland was truly an inspiring one. All the people in our group came back with their faith uplifted and memories of a lifetime. In Lithuania, we hung our own cross at the Hill of Crosses. Then in Vilnius, we saw the original icon image of the Divine Mercy, of which a hand painted copy hangs in our church. We visited a convent where St. Faustina lived and the house where the image was painted. In Bialystok, we visited the Basilica to honor Bl. Fr. Michael Sopocko, whom Jesus handpicked to be her confessor, and who spent the second part of his life actively spreading the Divine Mercy devotion message. From there, I brought back the authenticated First Class Relic of Blessed Sopocko, who will be venerated at our parish and beyond.
In Poland, we visited the basilica marking St. Faustina’s baptism and her parent’s house where she grew up which has become a museum. In Plock, we visited the convent where St. Faustina lived and where she received the vision of the image of the Divine Mercy along with hundreds of other visions and revelations about the inner life of the Holy Trinity, the Passion of Jesus, and His plans and desires for humanity “in preparation for His Second Coming.”
In addition to daily Masses in English at the local cathedrals and chapels, in Warsaw on Thursday, May 31st, our group participated in the most memorable Corpus Christi Mass in Polish and the Procession through the streets of Warsaw with a cardinal, five bishops, 20 priests, and an estimated 9,000 people.
In Krakow Lagiewniki, we visited the convent where St. Faustina lived toward the end of her short life and we celebrated the Mass in front of the relics of her body. We also visited the new Basilica of the Divine Mercy in the same location where millions of pilgrims visit from all over the world.
The above were just the highlights as there were many other very memorable sites and experiences about which I and others will talk and show in a slide presentation at the parish-wide open meeting on Thursday, August 9th, in Father Cotter Hall.