It is hard to believe, but the season of Lent is upon us: the Church’s great retreat! “The annual observance of Lent is the special season for the ascent to the holy mountain of Easter” (Ceremonial of Bishops, 249). Repentance and baptism are the focus of this season’s twofold theme: an individual is either preparing for baptism (or making a full profession of faith in the Catholic Church) or preparing to renew his or her baptismal promises at Easter. For this reason, the following directive is offered: “Instead of the Nicene Creed, especially during Lent and Easter Time, the baptismal Symbol of the Roman Church, known as the Apostles’ Creed, may be used.” So, between now and Pentecost, at Mass we will offer our Profession of Faith in the form of the Apostles’ Creed.
Music takes on a different role and feel during the season of Lent, too. As a parish practice, we will sing the same Opening Hymn, unifying our entrance throughout the season. The Gloria is not said or sung, except on the solemnities of Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (March 19) and on the Annunciation (March 25). Alleluia is not sung or said from the beginning of Lent until the Easter Vigil, changing the refrain of the Gospel Acclamation. All of this omission ought to create within us a yearning for their return. We do so, beginning with Holy Thursday and then entirely and triumphantly at the Easter Vigil. We will also take this opportunity to offer a different Mass setting; namely, the Holy (Sanctus), the Mystery of Faith, and the Great Amen.
Since the Second Vatican Council, the vernacular has replaced Latin in the liturgies of many communities, but the Council may not have intended Latin to become such an unfamiliar language for Latin Rite Catholics around the world. In fact, the Council’s document on the liturgy suggests otherwise. The Constitution on the Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, stated that: “Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites” (36.1). The Council Fathers also advised that even though use of the “Mother Tongue” in the liturgy might be expanded, “nevertheless steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able to say or to sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them” (54).
It is, therefore, a recommended and commendable practice that an element of the Latin language be expressed within the celebration of Mass (often during the season of Lent) uniting the faithful in tongue on a universal level throughout the world (just as the Greek has been preserved for the Kyrie during the Penitential Act). In an effort to model this, we will offer the Lamb of God (Agnus Dei) in Latin. Our hymnals offer the text to help us learn it, or better refamiliarize ourselves. Having recently been present for Mass in another language (even though I may have known what was going on) the Kyrie and Agnus Dei, allowed me to better participate, demonstrating for me in a very real way the universality of our faith and the manner of our public worship.
PARISH OFFICE VOLUNTEER NEEDED – We are in need of additional evening volunteers to assist in the parish office. This is a great way to become involved in the parish and meet new people! Our volunteers greet visitors, assist with simple office tasks and answer the office phones. If you are a “people person” and are interested in this opportunity, please contact the parish office (440-946-0887.)
LITURGICAL MINISTERS – The new schedule for Ministry Scheduler Pro (MSP) is now completed through the end of May and available to view as assigned.
HUNGER IN OUR WORLD – When Jesus fed the 5,000, he said, “Give them some food yourselves.” Reflect on the challenge of global hunger. How can you contribute to support the hungry in your community? Pick up your Rice Bowl in the narthex. Visit crsricebowl.org for more.
SOCIAL JUSTICE FUND – For January 2020, we collected $2152.46. Our expenses for January were:
|Meal at St. Augustine||444.05|
Thank you for your support!
CRS RICE BOWL TASTING – Please join us for a Rice Bowl Encounter sponsored by the Catholic Relief Services ambassadors, and discover some of the foods from the countries aided by CRS. Following the 9 am and 11 am masses on March 8th, samples of a few of the meatless recipes featured in the Rice Bowl Lenten pamphlet will be available in the narthex (no donuts on March 8th). The event is free and voluntary donations for the Rice Bowl campaign will be accepted. Give your Lent a boost and be a part of Rice Bowl!
FOOD PANTRY – So far in 2020, the pantry has served 292 people. Currently, we are in need of “Chunky” or “Progresso” soup, pasta, spaghetti sauce in jars, and strawberry jelly.
FOOD PANTRY BAGS – Over the last 4 years, we’ve distributed close to 500 St. Noel Food Pantry bags. If you have a bag lying around your home, please return it to the parish (with some food ☺) so it can get back into circulation. Thank you!
RECYCLE OLD RELIGIOUS ITEMS – This is the final weekend! St. Mary Mission from Lancaster, PA will be in the Diocese of Cleveland the week of March 2nd collecting used religious items that are no longer needed. Items accepted include: vestments, crucifixes, statues, rosaries, chalices (not pottery), medals, relics, prayer books, bibles, linens, candle holders/racks, altar ware, wall hangings/banners, etc. They will not accept: hymnals, furniture, holy cards, and textbooks. Please bring your used items to the parish office. Deadline is March 1st.
LENTEN BAGS & TAGS – We will again be collecting bags of items for Forbes House (the Lake County Women’s Shelter), Project Hope (the Lake County homeless shelter), Birthright, St Augustine Hunger Center, and the St. Noel Food Pantry. Plastic bags, tags with the items needed, and information on the various agencies will be available on the table in the narthex. These works of mercy are a tremendous benefit to the agencies; please consider making the bags a part of your Lenten devotion.
EXTRAORDINARY MINISTERS OF HOLY COMMUNION – Please contact Anthony (946-1128 x122) if you’re interested in offering communion at our weekend Masses or bringing communion to those unable to attend Mass. Training dates for 2020 have been announced by the Diocese.
MENTORS NEEDED – Refugee Response, a Cleveland organization, is seeking motivated, compassionate volunteers to take part in their Home Mentoring Program. Mentors offer a resettled refugee student in the Cleveland area much needed academic support, greater confidence in English language skills, and new windows into American culture and the community. Volunteer mentors are matched with a refugee student in grades K-8 and commit to spending two hours per week for one year practicing language skills and providing one-on-one tutoring and mentorship. Read more at stnoel.org or contact: Charlotte Lewis, Mentor Support Coordinator at [email protected].
GREETINGS FROM THE PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY – The LIGHT of Jesus shines within all of us. Perhaps you can bring LIGHT to someone who is in need of spiritual, physical, or emotional healing by bringing them a Prayer Shawl or Pocket Prayer Square. These items can be picked up free of charge at the parish office during office hours. Interested in learning about our ministry, come to our next meeting on March 3rd, 11-12:30pm, in the Resurrection Room. For information or to make a monetary donation, contact Candice Minello at 440-336-0991 or by email at [email protected].
ADORATION TIME CHANGE – Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament will end at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, March 2nd and 8:00 p.m. Monday, March 9th.
SERVERS NEEDED: We are in need of servers for all of our weekend liturgies. Altar serving is open to anyone age 10 (or in 4th grade) and older: kids, teens, adults. Parents can even serve with their children. Anyone is welcome. Serving is a wonderful way to fully participate in liturgy. Why not give it a try? If interested, please call the parish office, 440-946-0887.
ALWAYS OUR CHILDREN – The parents support group for families and friends of gay and lesbian Catholics welcomes you to join us at our next meeting, Sunday, March 8th, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the SJV Philomena Center of St. John Vianney Parish on Bellflower Road in Mentor, Ohio.