There is much going on at our Sister Parish and our Sister Parish Ministry! Here's a few updates:
-Congratulations to the 427 children at Mary, Mother of the Church, Nyakishenyi Parish who received First Holy Communion on the Feast of Corpus Christi. May God bless these children and all who receive Him through the Holy Eucharist!
Ugandan Water Project
A team from UWP will be visiting our Sister Parish in August. We are hoping to complete fundraising for 40 Sawyer PointONE Water Filters With Bucket Adapter Kits for the 35 churches, several primary schools, and a health clinic in our Sister Parish. We are halfway to our $2,800 goal!
Can you help? Please make checks payable to Our Lady Star of the Sea and write “Sister Parish – WATER” in the Memo and drop in the collection basket or Parish Office by July 11.
Items For Children
We are collecting soccer balls (size 5), extra needle packs, and pumps (with pull out handle), boxes of crayons, new pencils, pencil sharpeners, balloons, temporary tattoos & stickers (no super heros, fighting, etc.), glow sticks bracelets, toothbrushes and toothpaste, and nail clippers for UWP Team #19 to distribute to schools and programs serving street children in Uganda.
We will also be sending a package of greeting cards, letters, photos, drawings, and poetry and prayers to our brothers and sisters in Christ at our Sister Parish.
If you have items that you would donate or greetings/letters that you would like to send, please contact Tammi Murray or drop off in the Parish Office. Drop Off Deadline is Friday, July 11.
Visiting Our Sister Parish
Would you like to visit our Sister Parish? At least three parishioners are planning to visit our Sister Parish during Holy Week 2015. Our tentative trip dates are March 22-April 9, 2015. Estimated trip cost is $3,500. Formal trip planning Meetings will begin in the Fall or join us for Q&A over coffee this summer. Our next trip is scheduled for October 2016 for our Sister Parish’s Jubilee Celebration.
Please see this alert below from the Vocare Movement as it effects those in Kitsap County...
ALERT: There's a movement to ban Catholics' human rights.
Two upcoming meetings call for this INJUSTICE!
We Catholics, our beliefs and our hospitals which incarnate them are the direct target of a group of individuals and organizations desiring to legalize the discrimination of Catholic beliefs and practices. By the way, these beliefs and rights just happen to be protected by the U.S. and WA State Constitutions.
WA State Catholic hospitals merging with non-Catholic ones and having them come under their umbrella.
1. When a Catholic hospital's management merges with a public/private hospital and takes them under their umbrella, is the Catholic hospital able to continue to practice their rights, their deeply held spiritual and religious convictions? Specifically being argued in these two meetings, do Catholic hospitals have the right to NOT provide abortion, contraception, tubal ligation, vasectomies or assisted suicide in these new hospitals?
(By the way, none of these are health care. They're all elective.)
2. Or does the State have the right to force/mandate a private, religious institution to directly violate their human rights (religious beliefs that don't contradict natural law), their protected rights under our Constitutions, in favor of the rights of another?
Another interesting question we would like debated:
Which is the real pro-choice decision and which the real pro-bullying?
SHOW UP to one or both meetings WEARING RED! A red shirt or scarf. These are the Vocare Movement colors, the colors of the Holy Spirit.
These meetings are calling for a public response and discussion on these questions. So get your friends and family who care about their rights to go with you. You don't have to say anything. We mostly need to be there to show there are MANY people against this movement.
If we don't show up the proponents will say there's hardly anyone who cares if we let this happen! And we know from experience ... if we are silent, it will happen! So let's not let this movement gain any ground at all.
Both events are free.
Arrive early to be assured of a seat.
If you speak publicly, ask a question, or interact with people on the other side, remember that this issue is about human rights, the freedoms of religion and conscience. Abortion is not the issue, as inhumane and far from health care as it is. So don't let it become the issue. If you do it will be a distraction from the real issue. Let us be disciplined and the evening will be a victory. Find a leader and ask them about the details.
Most importantly, be very respectful and loving in all that you do. They will know we are Christians by our love. (cf. John 13:34-35)
Robb Miller, Ex. Dir., Compassion and Choices Washington
UW School of Nursing
Date: Jun 19, 2014
Time: 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Location: Bellevue First Congregational Church
Address: 752 - 108th Avenue NE, Bellevue, WA 98004
Parking: Free parking will be available on NE 8th Street between 108th Avenue NE and 110th Avenue NE.
Interesting facts on Catholic Health Care in WA State and the Northwest
There was a courageous, liberated woman who made Catholic health care in the Pacific Northwest happen. The statue of the Catholic Sister, Mother Joseph of the Sisters of Providence, was made for the WA State Legislature and sits in the Foyer of the WA State Legislative Building (the Dome). She is one of our two state icons which are also present in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capital in Washington, D.C.
Here are just a few amazing milestones she and her sisters established in their service to the sick and poor.
1st permanent hospital in the Northwest.
1st permanent hospital in WA State.
1st hospital in Seattle.
1st hospital in Olympia.
1st hospital in Vancouver, WA.
1st permanent hospital in Oregon.
1st permanent hospital in Portland.
Showing the Catholic spirit of health care
Pope Francis (while still Jorge Mario Bergoglio) serves the sick and the most vulnerable and marginalized, as he kisses the feet of a boy suffering from cancer. Catholic hospitals would never refuse health care to anyone who is truly sick.
How could we forget the images of Pope Francis kissing and blessing this horribly disfigured man, Vinicio Riva, a man whose body is covered with painful tumors due to a rare disease.
Let us pray that Catholics will be free to continue to respond to the Holy Spirit who moves us to serve and care for the most vulnerable, as Jesus taught us.
"But what most astonished me is that he didn't think twice on embracing me," Riva said. "I'm not contagious, but he didn't know. He just did it; he caressed all my face, and while he was doing that, I felt only love."
There are 175 parishes and missions in the Archdiocese, serving 579,500 Catholics
When you give a gift to the Annual Catholic Appeal, your money goes to support over 60 ministries and services. Some of the ministries supported by your gift include:
Vocation, Seminarian & Deacon Support
Support for retired priests and religious
Supporting the work of the Archbishop
Catholic Youth Organization
Catholic Faith Formation
Youth and Young Adult Evangelization
Thanks to your generosity, our church is here in times of need to provide comfort and hope. Your support is essential to our mission- without YOU, there would be no Church. No gift is too small.
Annual Catholic Appeal at Our Lady Star of the Sea
In addition to supporting the many ministries of the Archdiocese, the ACA has helped Our Lady Star of the Sea over the years with many needs. Each year, any amount raised from our parish above the goal given by the Archdiocese is sent back to our parish in the form of a rebate. This is just another reason to participate in the ACA, as it is a way of supporting Our Lady Star of the Sea!
Last year, due to your wonderful generosity, we raised enough money in pledges to receive a rebate large enough to pay for our newly refurbished 1951 MP Moller pipe organ. Work is already under way on the console and pipes, and we are hoping that the organ will be installed before this Christmas!
This year, the Archdiocese has set our goal at $132,717. As for our rebate, we will be working with Fr. Justus, who is the Financial Administrator for the Diocese of Kabale, and his Vicar General and Bishop to support their efforts in rebuilding their cathedral. Fr. Justus has been working with donors throughout the U.S. to help pay for this project and we are blessed to participate in helping bring this to fruition. We would like to provide them with enough to rebuild the sanctuary floor, walls, ceiling, exterior doors and altar. The estimated cost for this work is $75,000.
To raise this amount, we will need all of our parishioners to contribute to our ACA. If not financially, then prayer and support. This is a good opportunity for us to do something very special and generous for our Catholic brothers and sisters in Uganda, and to remind ourselves that we are all part of a Universal Church.
Now you can handle your donations to the Annual Catholic Appeal entirely online! Click the button below, or this link to start.
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Canonizing two recent popes in the presence of his immediate predecessor, Pope Francis praised the new Sts. John XXIII and John Paul II as men of courage and mercy, who responded to challenges of their time by modernizing the Catholic Church in fidelity to its ancient traditions.
"They were priests, bishops and popes of the 20th century," the pope said April 27, in his homily during Mass in St. Peter's Square. "They lived through the tragic events of that century, but they were not overwhelmed by them. For them, God was more powerful."
"John XXIII and John Paul cooperated with the Holy Spirit in renewing and updating the church in keeping with her original features, those features which the saints have given her throughout the centuries," he said.
Floribeth Mora Diaz, accompanied by her husband, Edwin, carries the relic of St. John Paul II during the canonization Mass for Sts. John XXIII and John Paul II in St. Peter's Square April 27. Mora Diaz's cure from an aneurysm in 2011 was the second miracle in the sainthood cause of St. John Paul. (CNS/Paul Haring)
Speaking before a crowd of half a million that included retired Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Francis praised St. John for his best-known accomplishment, calling the Second Vatican Council, which he said "showed an exquisite openness to the Holy Spirit."
"He let himself be led, and he was for the church a pastor, a servant-leader," the pope said of St. John. "This was his great service to the church. I like to think of him as the pope of openness to the Spirit."
Pope Francis characterized St. John Paul as the "pope of the family," a title he said the late pope himself had hoped to be remembered by. Pope Francis said he was sure St. John Paul was guiding the church on its path to two upcoming synods of bishops on the family, to be held at the Vatican this October and in October 2015.
The pope invoked the help of the two new papal saints for the synods' success, and he prayed, "May both of them teach us not to be scandalized by the wounds of Christ and to enter ever more deeply into the mystery of divine mercy, which always hopes and always forgives, because it always loves."
Pope Francis has said the agenda for the family synods will include church teaching and practice on marriage, areas he has said exemplify a particular need for mercy in the church today.
The pope repeatedly mentioned mercy in his homily, which he delivered on Divine Mercy Sunday, an observance St. John Paul put on the church's universal calendar in 2000. The Polish pope died on the vigil of the feast in 2005 and was beatified on Divine Mercy Sunday in 2011.
In addition to Pope Benedict, making only his third public appearance since he resigned in February 2013, Pope Francis' concelebrants included some 150 cardinals and 700 bishops.
Pope Benedict did not join the procession of bishops at the start of Mass, but arrived half an hour earlier, wearing white vestments and a bishop's miter and walking with a cane; he sat in a section of the square designated for cardinals. Pope Francis greeted his predecessor with an embrace at the start of the Mass, drawing applause from the crowd, and approached him again at the end.
During the canonization ceremony, which took place at the beginning of the Mass, devotees carried up relics of the new saints in matching silver reliquaries, which Pope Francis kissed before they were placed on a small table for veneration by the congregation.
St. John's relic was a piece of the late pope's skin, removed when his body was transferred to its present tomb in the main sanctuary of St. Peter's Basilica.
Floribeth Mora Diaz, a Costa Rican woman whose recovery from a brain aneurysm was recognized by the church as a miracle attributable to the intercession of St. John Paul, brought up a silver reliquary containing some of the saint's blood, taken from him for medical testing shortly before his death in 2005.
The Mass took place under cloudy skies with temperatures in the low 60s, and only a sprinkle of rain fell just before the 10 a.m. start of the liturgy. Huge tapestries bearing portraits of the two saints hung from the facade of the basilica, and the square was decorated with 30,000 roses and other flowers donated by the nation of Ecuador.
The square and the broad Via della Conciliazione leading up to it were tightly packed with approximately half a million pilgrims, many of whom had been standing for hours before the start of Mass. Among the many national flags on display, the majority were from Poland, the native land of St. John Paul.
The Vatican estimated that 800,000 attended the ceremony in Rome, with overflow crowds watching on giant-screen TVs set up at various locations around the city. The 2011 beatification of Pope John Paul drew more than 1 million people, according to Italian police estimates at the time.
The Vatican said 93 countries sent official delegations to the Mass, and more than 30 of the delegations were led by a president or prime minister. The current king and queen of Spain and the former king and queen of Belgium were in attendance.
Pope Francis spent half an hour personally greeting the delegations following the Mass. He then rode in his popemobile through the square and adjacent avenue, drawing cheers and applause from the crowds, for about 20 minutes until disappearing at the end of the street.
The canonizations of both popes came after extraordinary measures by their successors to expedite the process. Pope Benedict waived the usual five-year waiting period before the start of a sainthood cause for Pope John Paul shortly after his death, when he was mourned by crowds shouting "Santo subito!" ("A saint at once!"). In the case of St. John, Pope Francis waived the usual requirement of a second miracle before a blessed can added to the church's canon of saints.
VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - APRIL 27: In this handout photo provided by the Italian National Police, an aerial view of St. Peter's Square and Via della Conciliazione is seen as Pope Francis leads a Canonization Mass in which John Paul II and John XXIII are to be declared saints on April 27, 2014 in Vatican City, Vatican. Dignitaries, heads of state and Royals from around the world attended the canonisations in the Vatican today. (Photo by Massimo Sestini/Italian National Police via Getty Images)
The Word our Savior spoke just prior to his Last Word was, "I thirst." St. John tells us our Lord, "aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, said, "I thirst" (Jn 19:28). John's gospel is filled with deep and wondrous symbolism. So too is our Lord's "thirst."
As we stand before the Cross this Good Friday, if we come there in purity of heart as our Blessed Mother clearly beckons us to do with her soft, prayerful hands, we will enter into a mystery of love beyond the world. See the Cross. See the innocent and kind Son of God hanging there, bloodied and battered, fastened to the tree of life with rusted, cruel spikes.
DENVER, CO (Catholic Online) - During these three most holy days—the Triduum—Catholics and other Christians are called to enter into a sublime place of great depth and magnitude, a realm beyond time and space in which our hope strives to join with Love for the satisfaction of our thirst. We journey to this sacred place without sight but not without vision, where we too, as with St. John, desire to lay our head on our Savior's breast and drink deeply from the inexhaustible well of his Sacred Heart. On Holy Thursday, we entered into the Upper Room and, along with the disciples at the Last Supper, received the incomprehensibly wondrous gift of the Eucharist—our Lord's true body, blood, soul and divinity. On this Good Friday, we go and stand along with the Mother of our Catholic Church, the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the base of the Cross. And on Holy Saturday we wait in silence for that moment when the stone is rolled back from the tomb, that moment when our hearts are warmed in the fires of the Lord's resurrection, when we, along with the saints in heaven, cry out to ourselves and our brethren the world over: "Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you" (Isaiah 60:1). As we stand before the Cross this Good Friday, if we come there in purity of heart as our Blessed Mother clearly beckons us to do with her soft, prayerful hands, we will enter into a mystery of love beyond the world. See the Cross. See the innocent and kind Son of God hanging there, bloodied and battered, fastened to the tree of life with rusted, cruel spikes. Our sacred and loving Lord willingly chose that brutal place of death, that stumbling block, that tree whose wood would in fact pierce the world with the divine sword of Love in order that we might be saved from ourselves. Through his Passion and Death on the Cross, enduring undeserved pain and agony, our God rescued us. He saved us from death—a death we fail to understand—without our asking, without our deserving it, without even our knowledge of it.
The Last Word our Lord uttered from that terrible yet wondrous Cross was: "It is finished" (Jn 19:30). This Last Word embodies Christ's entire mission of salvation: his sweet birth from the Virgin's womb as God Incarnate; his quiet, ascetic life within the most Holy Family at Nazareth; his countless and beautiful acts as Master and Teacher; and his selfless, radical love so blindingly evident in his Passion and Death. The Word our Savior spoke just prior to his Last Word was, "I thirst." St. John tells us our Lord, "aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, said, "I thirst" (Jn 19:28). John's gospel is filled with deep and wondrous symbolism. So too is our Lord's "thirst." At hearing Christ was thirsty, "they put a sponge soaked in wine on a sprig of hyssop and put it up to his mouth." It is immediately after Jesus tastes of this wine that he says, "It is finished," and "bowing his head," he hands "over the spirit" (Jn 19:29-30). It was also a sprig of hyssop that Moses and the People Israel used to apply lambs' blood to the doorposts in order to save them from the destroyer. "You shall take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood which is in the basin, and apply some of the blood that is in the basin to the lintel and the two doorposts; and none of you shall go outside the door of his house until morning. For the Lord will go by, striking down the Egyptians. Seeing the blood on the lintel and the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over that door and not let the destroyer come into your houses to strike you down" (Ex. 12:22-23). Christ thirsts on the Cross that his blood will be shed in order that the destroyer will pass over us. Our Lord thirsts for our salvation; Jesus thirsts to accomplish what the Father has willed, and also as he himself, the Son of the Living God, has willed to accomplish: the Final Covenant sealed in his own blood. From the Cross, in the final moments when Mercy, Love and Compassion Itself is on the threshold of completing the greatest act the universe will ever know, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity experiences his greatest thirst. And, at last, "It is finished" (Jn 19:30). Along with the disciples in the Upper Room, we too drink from the blood of the Final Covenant. The most pure, spotless Lamb, has given himself over to his Catholic Church, to the People of God, in an indescribable act of thirst and love. At every celebration of the Eucharist, our Lord's precious blood is mercifully poured out for us that we in our thirst, too, might one day on our deathbed joyfully exclaim: "It is finished." It is our Lord who has done all this for us. Come to the Cross. See, like the Samaritan Woman, that it is Christ who first asks for a drink that he may, then, offer us living water. It is Christ who thirsts that we thirst for him, the Paschal Lamb. It is in the Eucharist that we drink deeply from the well of Mercy which springs up into eternal life. The Eucharist is therefore the living water, it is the gift of God. Jesus says to each and every one of us: "If you knew the gift of God and who is saying to you, 'Give me a drink', you would have asked and he would have given you living water." The Samaritan Woman at the well is astonished and wonders—as do many to this very day—where this "living water" is to be obtained, asking, "Where then, can you get this living water?" Jesus leads her further into the mystery of himself: "Whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life" (Jn 4:10-14). Just a short while later—though many of his own disciples find his words preposterous—our Lord reveals the deeper truth about this "living water." The water which wells up into eternal life is his own flesh and blood: "Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him" (Jn 6:54-56). Let us not stand among those former disciples who quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?" (Jn 6:52). Let us, rather, come before the Cross this Good Friday and, along with our Blessed Mother, trust in what God has said he will do. Let us kneel at the Place of the Skull and thirst for He who first thirsted for us. Let us this Triduum, as the Samaritan Woman, say, "Sir, give me this water . . . ." (Jn 4:15).
The Venerable Pope John Paul II, in speaking to his general audience in April 2001, observed that the "sacred Triduum is the 'mystery of love without limit,' that is, the mystery of Jesus who 'having loved his own who were in the world . . . loved them to the end'" (Jn 13:1). It is Christ who thirstily loved us to the end—all of us. That is the message of Good Friday. It is Christ whose thirst to accomplish his Father's plan reached such immense proportions that he willingly endured the death of a common criminal on a Roman Cross. This type of thirst is radical indeed. It is most certainly beyond human. Stand below the Cross and see how God has thirsted for you; how he has selflessly and lovingly given himself in the Eucharist. Justice demands that you and I too thirst to give of ourselves to Christ, our Savior and our God.
"The Eucharist is an eloquent sign of this total, free and gratuitous love, and offers each person the joy of the presence of the One who enables us too to love 'to the end' in imitation of him. The love that Jesus proposes to his disciples is demanding" —Pope John Paul II
The Cross challenges us, it troubles our consciences, it reveals in the light of reality our failings and sin. It demands change and repentance; it demands a new life of unity with Christ and his people. It demands love. Yet the Cross, too, brings us to a new beginning; one where, in sublime wonder, we see that God offers us salvation through his Son that we may forever live with the Holy Trinity. In view of our Lord's selfless act on the Cross, we might boldly claim that our own death has been put to death by Love. When standing before the Cross this Good Friday, let us not forget Christ thirsted to give of himself in the Eucharist. Let us remember that this Love who pours out his blood for us does so to transform us into something beyond ourselves. We are called to a new life. We are called to pick up our cross. But let us also meet Christ, there, on the Cross, in a new beginning. Let us live the Catholic life always and everywhere. Let us thirst for what we know. "He who climbs never stops going from beginning to beginning, through beginnings that have no end. He never stops desiring what he already knows"—St. Gregory of Nyssa
----- F. K. Bartels believes his Catholic Faith is a treasure beyond words. He is managing editor of catholicpathways.com, and a contributing writer for Catholic Online