Saint Paul Cathedral
2015 Lent/Holy Week Schedule
ASH WEDNESDAY—FEBRUARY 18
Masses will be celebrated at 6:45 am, 8:15 am, 12:05 pm and 6:00 pm. Bishop Zubik will be presiding at the 6pm Mass. Ashes will be distributed during all Masses.
STATIONS OF THE CROSS
Stations of the Cross will be celebrated on the Wednesdays during Lent following the 12:05 pm Mass – February 25, March 4, 11, 18, 25 and April 1
Stations of the Cross, along with Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction, will take place every Friday evening in Lent at 7:00 pm – February 20, 27, March 6, 13, 20 and 27
SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION
The Sacrament of Reconciliation is celebrated at the Cathedral every
Wednesday at 7:00 pm, every Friday at 12:35 pm and every Saturday at 12:35 pm and at 7:00 pm.
On Wednesday, March 18, priests will be available to hear confessions in the Church from 6:00 pm until 9:00 pm. There will be confessions in every Church of the Diocese on that evening from 6:00—9:00 pm as part of the Diocesan effort called The Light is on for You.
Holy Week Confessions:
Monday of Holy Week, March 30, at 12:35 pm
Tuesday of Holy Week, March 31, at 12:35 pm
Holy Thursday, April 2 NO CONFESSIONS
Good Friday, April 3, following the 1:30pm Service.
Holy Saturday, NO CONFESSIONS
HOLY WEEK MASS AND SERVICE SCHEDULE
PALM SUNDAY ANTICIPATED MASS – SATURDAY, MARCH 28
6:00 pm Anticipated Mass – Bishop Zubik will be presiding.
PALM SUNDAY – SUNDAY, MARCH 29
Masses – 6:30 am, 8:00 am, 10:00 am, 12:00 pm and 6:00 pm
MONDAY, MARCH 30
Masses – 6:45 am, 8:15 am and 12:05 pm
12:35 pm – Confessions
TUESDAY, MARCH 31
Masses – 6:45 am, 8:15 am and 12:05 pm
12:35 pm – Confession
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 1
Masses – 6:45 am, 8:15 am and 12:05 pm
12:35 pm – Stations of the Cross
THERE WILL BE NO NOVENA THIS EVENING!
HOLY THURSDAY – THURSDAY, APRIL 2
No Daily Masses
10:00 am – Chrism Mass
7:00 pm – Mass of the Lord’s Supper – Bishop Zubik will be presiding.
Private Adoration until Midnight
GOOD FRIDAY – FRIDAY, APRIL 3
12:00 pm – Service of the Seven Last Words
1:30 pm – Good Friday Liturgy – Bishop Zubik will be presiding.
3:00pm – Confessions
7:00 pm, Ecumenical Tenebrae – Bishop Zubik will be presiding.
HOLY SATURDAY – SATURDAY, APRIL 4
12:00 pm – Blessing of Easter Food with Bishop Zubik
8:30 pm, Easter Vigil – Bishop Zubik will be presiding
NOTE: There will be NO 6:00 pm EVENING MASS on HOLY SATURDAY.
EASTER SUNDAY – SUNDAY, APRIL 5
Masses – 6:30 am, 8:00 am, 10:00 am, 12:00 pm and 6:00 pm
2:00 pm, Easter Blessing of Families – Bishop Zubik will be presiding.
LENTEN REGULATIONS FOR ALL CATHOLICS
- Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of fast and abstinence (no meat).
- The Fridays of Lent are days of abstinence (no meat).
- The obligation of abstinence (refraining from eating meat) begins at age 14.
- The law of fasting (limiting oneself to one full meal and two lighter meals) is obligatory for people between the ages of 18 and 59, but is encouraged for all who can do so without causing harm. No one should consider this obligation lightly.
- All the faithful, children and adults alike, are encouraged to do acts of penance and charity during the Lenten season. This includes “giving something up” as part of the sacrificial nature of Lent and increasing prayers and works of charity as well.
The Church comes now to the final days of the liturgical year and prepares for the Feast of Christ the King and a new beginning with Advent. The Gospel parable fittingly talks about the wise use the goods God has entrusted to us. Whether we have been given five, two or one talents – the expectation God has for their use remains the same. This is a story of faithful stewardship. What we have come to possess through faith in Jesus Christ and our life in his Body, the Church, is immense. We have inherited an abundance of riches from God. But they are given with the expectation that we will use them for the right purposes.
So often we are caught up in the pursuit of our own self interests. Materialism and secularism have convinced us that we need to accumulate as much as possible for our own well-being and happiness. We neglect our responsibilities to God, his Church and to others, our brothers and sisters in Christ. As St. Paul reminds us in the second reading: “For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. When people are saying, peace and security, then sudden disaster comes upon them.” We do not know the hour or time of the Lord’s return but faith gives us the confident hope that he will indeed come again to take everything to himself. We must live not in fear or anxiety for these final things, but always in joyful expectation of what awaits those who live in faith and in love.
Yes our sins and failings get the best of us at times; we are imperfect human beings in constant need of God’s grace. But the Scriptures remind us today, “Blessed are you who fear the Lord and walk in his ways! For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork; blessed shall you be, and favored.”
We have been given such an abundance of blessings from our God: our life and faith; our material goods and riches; our health, intelligence, family situation and our talents and skills. Faith requires that we use them not for our own gain, but for the glory and praise of Almighty God, to serve him in love, to care for those in need, to help carry on the work of the Church and the proclamation of the Gospel. What kind of stewards have we been? Have we used our time, talent and treasure for God and the Church or for our own selfish pursuits? St. Augustine told the early Christians that no one can outdo the generosity of God. The more one gives, the more one receives in faith. This is what Jesus means in the Gospel today when he says, “For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich.” When we work to use our gift and blessings for the glory of God and his holy Church, when we work to help our brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, we will gain even more of the richness of grace and be led by the hand of God to the delights of heaven.
Our prayers and thoughts are with the Franklin Regional High School community – the administrators, teachers, staff, students, parents and families – and most especially the victims of the tragic stabbing incident that hurt 20 people and we remember the perpetrator and his family in our prayers as well. Our hearts are broken to see how easily violence, hatred and evil can break into the world in which we live. We all feel violated. Sending our children off to school each day is something that we do without much thought. Schools are supposed to be safe, loving places where our children are given the opportunity to develop their fullest potential. But the incident at Franklin Regional reminds us just how fragile our lives are. These things can happen anywhere, anytime. How important that we take time each day to connect with our children, to do all we can to make sure we know what is happening in their lives. We need to talk and learn their struggles, their pains and sorrows and their worries. They need to know they are loved and treasured, certainly by their parents but also by their God. Faith gives a foundation and purpose to life. Every family needs to be grounded in a belief that connects them to God, to something that reminds that they are guided and blessed by the hand of God in good times and in bad. May God bring peace, healing, comfort, consolation and strength to those whose lives are now forever changed.
THE FORTY DAYS OF LENT are a time of preparation for the great feast of Easter. These forty days call to mind for us the 40 days that Christ spent in the desert, praying and fasting. This is a season of penance, prayer, fasting and works of mercy as the means for interior conversion and growing in holiness and faith. The Gospel on Ash Wednesday speaks of the three disciplines of the Lenten season that are important ways in which we can prepare ourselves well in this season of grace: Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving. Lent calls us to deepen our commitment to PRAYER. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says that we should pray “more often than we draw breath.” Lent is a good time to increase our prayer life. Come to Mass more frequently, make a holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament once a week or daily, pray the rosary with your family every night at home, read the Bible and meditate on what you read, even for five minutes each day. Lent also asks that we join ourselves more closely to the Cross and the sufferings Christ endured for our salvation. FASTING allows us to be detached more from the pleasures of this world so that we can fill it with spiritual realities. This is why Lent is a time for us “to give something up,” something that we really like and are attracted to so that in its absence we can give ourselves more completely to Christ and our faith. Abstaining from meat and eating only one full meal on Fridays in Lent are ways to keep the practice of fasting. But Lent calls us as well to ALMSGIVING or in other words to works of mercy and charity. We need to use our time, talent and treasure not selfishly but so that we can help others and work to build up the Body of Christ, the Church. Lent invites us to engage if acts of kindness for others, to be more charitable, to use our financial resources to help the Church and its outreach to those in need. Each of us needs to make and to keep Lenten resolutions that involve all three disciplines that the Church sets forth for us.
Last evening I had the privilege and joy of speaking at the first Theology on Tap event for the greater Oakland area. We gathered at Hough’s Taproom and Brewpub in Greenfield, who welcomed us warmly and with open arms. The young adults on the Steering Committee from Saint Paul Cathedral Parish and Saint Regis Parish did an awesome job in organizing and hosting the event. More than 100 young adults came and the place was filled up completely. It was exciting to see so many young adults interested in their faith. The passion, energy and enthusiasm of that group brought joy to everyone in attendance. I spoke about the gift of our Catholic faith that invites each of us into a personal, living encounter with Jesus Christ and his Church. In sharing Pope Francis’ teaching in the “The Joy of the Gospel,” I challenged the young adults to be people who manifest the joy of their faith so that they can lead others to know and to love Jesus Christ. It is big deal to be Catholic; sharing the Good News is not for the faint of heart. But we are given the grace and strength from God to accomplish all that he desires when we remain close to him in the Holy Eucharist, the Sacrament of Penance, in our personal prayer and our communion with our Blessed Lady and the saints. I was encouraged and strengthened in my own faith last evening by the love and joy evident in the hearts of so many young people who want to live out their faith and help to bring the Church Alive.
Join us for the next Theology of Tap, on Monday, March 3 at Hough’s in Greenfield. Mike Aquilina will speak on the Church Fathers: The super-heroes of our faith.” The event begins at 7 PM.
The young adults from Saint Paul Cathedral Parish and Saint Regis Parish are working in collaboration to reach out to all young adults in the greater Oakland area. Young adults are those in their 20s and 30s who are either single or married. Theology on Tap invites young adults to gather once a month at a local bar/restaurant for some free appetizers, and any drinks and food that an individual might want to purchase for the evening. The Oakland Young Adult Ministry is excited to launch its Theology on Tap program which will be held on the first Monday of each month at Hough’s Sports Bar in Greenfield (563 Greenfield Avenue). Our first gathering is scheduled for Monday, February 3rd from 7-9 pm. As the pastor and rector of the Cathedral, I was overjoyed to be asked to be the first speaker and talk about “Being Catholic – So What?” We invited all young adults to participate. We encourage all our young adults to spread the news that we are launching our efforts to engage the young adult community so that they can be actively participating in the life of our parish communities in Oakland.
Mark your calendars for Monday, March 3rd with noted author and speaker, Mike Aquilina and Monday, April 7th with Bob Rice, professor at the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Come and join us and invite other young adults to comeministry along. This is an opportunity to get to know other young adults in the greater Oakland area and to learn more about your Catholic faith.
Today we mark in a solemn and joyous way the Birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. In the mystery of the Incarnation, the Church confesses that Jesus is inseparably true God and true man. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church makes clear: “He is truly the Son of God who, without ceasing to be God and Lord, became a man and our brother.” (CCC 469). St. John Chrysostom spoke eloquently on this mystery: “O only-begotten Son and Word of God, immortal being, you who deigned for our salvation to become incarnate of the holy Mother of God and ever-virgin Mary, you who without change became man and were crucified, O Christ our God, you who by your death have crushed death, you who are one of the Holy Trinity, glorified with the Father and the Holy Spirit, save us.” Let us not forget in our celebration of Christmas that our gaze should rest on the Christ-child, born in Bethlehem over 2000 years ago, Jesus Christ, truly God and truly man, consubstantial with the Father. What joy we feel this day as we celebrate the birth of our Savior, the one described so beautifully by the prophet Isaiah in our Christmas reading. “And they name him, Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace!”
I extend a very special word of welcome to all who join us for the celebration of Christmas this year. To all our faithful parishioners and to your family members who join us in these days; to our college students and to those in graduate studies; to all those who are visiting us and come from far and near. Welcome to Saint Paul Cathedral. We are delighted that you are here and worshiping with us on this Christmas Day. Together with our parochial vicars, Father Michael Roche and Father Steven Palsa, along with the parish staff, and our priests in residence: Father Vallecorsa, Father Freedy and Father Ward, we extend to each and every one of you our best wishes for a blessed and joyous Christmas celebration. In a very special way, we will be remembering you in our Masses on Christmas Day and in the octave of Christmas, and promise you our prayers in this holy season. It is a privilege and a joy to serve the faithful at Saint Paul Cathedral parish where the Church is alive in so many ways, especially in the hearts of our faithful, loving parishioners. May this Christmas be a time of joy and peace for you, your families and all your loved ones. Merry Christmas one and all!