April 3, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

As a Catholic Christian community we are now embarking on the holiest week of the year. Normally, we gather in church to hear the Scriptures of Jesus’ Passion, receive blessed palms and head home to arrange the palms in places of prominence. We then anxiously await for the beautiful liturgy of Holy Thursday, then enter into the pain of the cross of Good Friday.  Finally, we sigh, and with joy in our hearts we celebrate Easter Sunday: Jesus Christ risen from the dead.

All of these days will still occur, however, they will not be celebrated publicly. It is imperative that we still enter into these sacred days. With the virus outbreak, the cross is so heavy. I can feel it in my being. I am at a loss without you during these sacred days. For this is my first Holy Week/Easter with all of you. I was so excited to celebrate this time with you in church. However, our faith tells us to move forward, to be hopeful and to trust these sacred liturgies will bring healing, unity and peace to a fearful world.

I firmly encourage you to please make this week holy by entering into these most sacred days. Create a prayer space for you and your family to read the scriptures and watch the sacred mysteries unfold before you in a new way. God’s grace will provide what is lacking in our humanity.

The following gives the schedule for the week:

  • Sunday, April 5, 2020 – Palm Sunday – Mass recorded in St. Paul Church (with the blessing of palms) will be posted at approximately 10:00 a.m. on our Facebook page and website
  • Monday, April 6, 2020 – Chrism Mass – Mass filmed live at 7:00 p.m. at The Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament https://www.facebook.com/cathedral.aod/
  • Thursday, April 9, 2020 – Holy Thursday – Mass filmed live at 7:00 p.m. at St. Joan of Arc https://www.facebook.com/sjascscatholic/ (Fr. Jim and Fr. Craig will be in attendance)
  • Friday, April 10, 2020 – Good Friday – Mass filmed live at 1:00 p.m. at St. Joan of Arc https://www.facebook.com/sjascscatholic/ (Fr. Jim and Fr. Craig will be in attendance)
  • Saturday, April 11, 2020 – Easter Vigil – Mass recorded in St. Paul Church will be posted at approximately 8:00 p.m. on our Facebook page and website
  • Sunday, April 12, 2020 – Easter – Mass recorded in St. Paul Church will be posted at approximately 10:00 a.m. on our Facebook page and website

I believe this Easter will be very powerful. The mystery of Jesus Christ’s passion, death and resurrection will have a lasting impact on all of us. Jesus’ Resurrection will give us the courage and confidence to persevere until we gather again around the Altar of the Lord at St. Paul.

In expectant hope of the Resurrection and new life,

Fr. Jim Bilot

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