Christmas is one week from this Monday. This timing makes next Sunday, which is the Fourth Sunday of Advent, also Christmas Eve. Because of the proximity of these two feasts, we will have only two Masses for the Fourth Sunday of Advent: Saturday, December 23rd at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, December 24th at 10:00 a.m. Please mark your calendars, so that you arrive next Sunday at the proper time. Also, because we do depend on your contributions for each of the feasts of the year, please adjust your giving to include both the fourth Sunday of Advent and Christmas.
Our Christmas schedule will be as it has been in the past. Christmas Eve Masses will take place on Sunday, December 24th at 4:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m. and Midnight. There will be one Mass on Christmas Day at 11:00 a.m.
With the additional seats we will add to the church, we are able to seat 800 people. Each year at the 4:30 p.m. liturgy, we have over 900 people present. So you will clearly need to arrive early if you desire to be seated. At all the remaining Masses, attendance runs between 300-400, so you will not have problems finding a seat at these liturgies. But I invite you to come early so that you can enjoy the Christmas music provided by our Music Ministry which will begin 20 minutes before each Mass. Be sure to welcome the many guests who will join us for the Christmas liturgies.
As we pray these liturgies together, it is an excellent time to express thankfulness for the blessings of our families, our country, and our Catholic faith. It is also important to remember the struggles of so many throughout our world who must face poverty, domestic violence, war and forced immigration from their homeland. May the Holy Family who faced similar struggles at the First Nativity, protect those in danger and motivate us to work for peace and justice in our world.
Fr. George Smiga
CHURCH DECORATORS NEEDED! We need assistance decorating the Church immediately following the 10:00 a.m. Mass on Christmas Eve morning. What better way to celebrate the true reason for the season with your family. The more the merrier! Please call the parish office to sign up today (440-946-0887).
UPCOMING BLOOD DRIVE – Our blood drive is this Sunday, December 17th from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Banquet Center. Walk-ins are welcome! Give the gift of life for the holidays.
CHRISTMAS CONCERT – Join us this Sunday, December 17th at 4:00 p.m., for our St. Noel Music Ministry “Sing to the Lord” Christmas Concert, conducted by Agnieszka Duda-Bieniek. Admission is free with refreshments to follow.
PRIME TIME– Prime Time will be meeting this Sunday, December 17th, from 6:30-8:00 p.m. in the Teen Center.
PEACE– Our last PEACE for the 2017 year is on December 19th. Pizza will be provided.
BULLETIN ARTICLES – Due to the upcoming holidays, all articles for the December 31st bulletin, are due in the office by Monday, December 18th.
LEAF – Our next LEAF meeting is this Monday, December 18th at 7:00 p.m. in the Nativity Room. If you have a loved one or family member who is incarcerated, consider attending LEAF (Listening, Empowering, Assisting Families). LEAF is a non-denominational ministry where relatives and friends of those incarcerated can join with others in conversation and fellowship. Meetings, which take place on the third Monday of each month, are anonymous and registration is not required. Visit www.leafministry.org or call the St. Noel parish office at 440-946-0887 for more information.
LITURGICAL MINISTER SCHEDULES have been emailed. If you have not received one, please stop in the parish office or pick one up in the kiosk.
LITURGICAL MINISTERS – Sign-up sheets for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are on the bulletin board by the kitchenette. Please sign up if you can assist with these Masses.
CHURCH LAUNDRY VOLUNTEER – We are in need of laundry volunteers. The rotation is once every 5 or 6 weeks, and we can accommodate your schedule. If you are interested and want to volunteer your services, please call Connie Carr at 440-286-3204.
ADVENT REFLECTION BOOKLETS – are available on the table in the Narthex. Please help yourself.
OFFICE VOLUNTEER NEEDED for Monday evenings. Please call the parish office at 440-946-0887 if you would be interested in volunteering every other Monday evening from 6:00–8:30 p.m.
CEPROSI CHRISTMAS CARDS – Cards from our Nicaraguan partners are available for purchase in the Narthex. Thanks for your support of CEPROSI.
FREE FRESH PRODUCE – Our next senior market is scheduled for Monday, December 18th from 2-4 p.m. in the Banquet Center. Last month we served 55 families totaling 98 people. The Senior Produce Market is designed to give low-income seniors access to fresh produce throughout the year. St. Noel is happy to partner with the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. Please spread the word.
COMMONWEAL LOCAL COMMUNITIES – Commonweal Local Communities began in 2013. They consist of readers and friends of Commonweal who gather in their local communities for critical conversation on issues that matter the most. The next gathering is scheduled for Monday, December 18th at 6:00 p.m. in the Resurrection Room. You do not need to be a subscriber to attend, but you must pre-register. If interested, email your name and parish to Jack Rakosky ([email protected]). Learn more at: https://pages.commonwealmagazine.org/clc/
YOUNG NEIGHBORS IN ACTION – Youth Ministry will be taking a group of high school students on a week-long Catholic service trip to St. Paul on the Lake, Grosse Point Farms near Detroit, Michigan July 8-14. Young Neighbors in Action is a Catholic service learning experience committed to exploring our church’s mission in the world while connecting people to meaningful service opportunities. The trip is open to anyone in grades 9-12 but space is limited. Deposits of $50 are due by Monday, January 8th. Registration forms and more information are available on the kiosk.
CLOTHING BIN – The clothing bin outside the food pantry is for clothing items only. We do not accept used toys, dishes, glasses, and other household items. There are other agencies who will accept these items. Thank you.
MYANMAR – Thanks to all who supported the fundraiser to aid the work of Doctors Without Borders in Myanmar & Bangladesh. The St. Noel contingent donated $1300.00 to the event. Please continue to pray for the hundreds of thousands of displaced Rohingya people and for those who have lost their lives.
EUCHARISTIC ADORATION – has made a difference in the lives of the men and women who spend time before the Blessed Sacrament on Mondays between 1:00-9:00 p.m. each holy hour that you make in the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament releases his grace and power upon you, your family and your parish.
We are looking for someone to cover the evening time of 7:00-8:00 p.m. Are you free and able to fill this time slot? Please call Jan at 440-951-5593 or the church office at 440-946-0887.
If you are unable to make a definite commitment, please stop in anytime during Eucharistic Adoration and you will be richly blessed.
AUGUSTINE RAFFLE CALENDARS – are being sold to support the Hunger Center. They are $25 each (checks payable to St. Augustine) with chances to win throughout the year. They make good Christmas gifts. Calendars are available in the parish office until December 18th.
PARISH DAYTIME RETREAT – Join us on Wednesday, January 3rd from 9:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. for “Gifts Given are not to be Hidden,” facilitated by the Retreat Community with guest speaker Anthony Camino. Start the New Year with a day of prayer, reflection, and community. There is no charge. A donation of $6.00 is suggested to cover lunch, if you are able. Call Fran at 440-625-1228 or sign up on the kiosk.
NOEL FELLOWSHIP – Meetings are held on Thursdays at Noon in the St. Noel Banquet Center Small Hall. No Meetings on December 21st and 28th. Meetings will resume on January 4, 2018. Everyone is welcome!
NET NEUTRALITY – The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) recently released a statement supporting net neutrality. Read the statement on the St. Noel webpage. See the St. Noel Facebook page for an easy way to help.