Dear Friends in Christ:
MONDAY CONFESSIONS…Please consider availing yourself of the opportunity to go to Confession during this Season of Lent. In addition to Saturdays from 3PM until heard, we are also available on Monday mornings from 7:30 to 8:30a.m. so come by on your way to work!
One of my priest friends commented the other night at a priest gathering that his loneliest time of the week is when he sits in the confessional. Although he laughed it off, I think his comment points to a real problem and is really quite sad.
It got me thinking, why do many not avail themselves of the opportunity to experience the grace of the Sacrament of Reconciliation? What is it that causes many Catholics to not come to seek forgiveness from God for their wrongdoings? Truth be told, his comment made me realize it was time for me to go to Confession and so I did that evening. Why wait?
When is the last time you went to Confession? Do you not want to receive the mercy of God? Do you not want a fresh start? Do you not want to be freed from that sin and burden?
I realize many do not consider Confession to be important to their spiritual life these days. This is truly concerning to me! Who wouldn’t want to be freed from their sin and begin a fresh start at trying to follow Jesus better?
Sacramental confession allows God’s loving mercy and His grace-filled absolution to be confirmed to us through the ministry of the priest. Christ, through the priest, invites us to let go of anything that gets in the way of our relationship with Him. Christ, through the priest, encourages us to open ourselves to the peace and grace which can only be found through God’s forgiveness.
Through the sacramental ministry of the Church and the Sacrament of Reconciliation our sins are forgiven and we are given the grace to be more like Christ; to experience and embody the saving ministry and healing grace of Jesus Christ.
I am also aware that some do not go to Confession because they are too nervous! If you're worried because you're "new at this," or because “it has been so long,” that's okay! It's okay to be nervous, it's okay to be afraid, but don’t let that fear hold you back. Just tell the priest how you feel. Let him know how long it’s been and that you are nervous and he will walk you through it. The priest is there to put you at ease and help you through your confession so you can experience the graces our Lord wants to pour out on you!
I urge us all to be open to God’s love and grace in the Sacrament of Reconciliation this Lent. Encourage family members and friends to do the same. Don’t wait to experience God’s mercy!
But Father, it has been so long since I went to confession I simply don’t know what to confess? That’s ok. Prepare for the Sacrament by examining your conscience. There are many good examinations of conscience out there that are available on the internet. We also have some copies of the one provided by the Knights of Columbus available at the doors of the church, which I think is very helpful. It can also be found on the internet by putting in this link: http://www.kofc.org/un/en/resources/cis/devotionals/2075.pdf.
I am asking every parishioner to give this some thought and PLEASE go to Confession! Don’t put it off. Come experience the mercy of God.
Please go to confession.
UPDATE…our Lenten Parish Corporal Works of Mercy…this past weekend the generous people of our parish donated 1,968 pounds of beverages to the Cheshire Community Food Pantry to give drink to the thirsty! Thank you! This weekend we are collecting WHITE socks for men, women, and children to be donated to the Saint Vincent DePaul Shelter in Waterbury to help clothe the naked.
VERY IMPORTANT CHANGE TO OUR CORPORAL WORKS OF MERCY PROGRAM…Please note that we are switching the NEXT TWO corporal works of mercy. Next weekend, March 30 & 31, we will work to visit the sick so please bring your homemade Thinking of you and Praying for you cards to Mass next weekend. These will be distributed to the homebound parishioners and those in skilled nursing facilities. The following weekend we will work together to shelter the homeless by taking up a second collection. Thank you for your understanding with this switch in our schedule and for all you do to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate and for recognizing that in serving them we are serving the Lord.
Don’t forget about our Lenten Suppers…I hope you and your family will join us for one or all of the remaining Lenten Suppers. It is great to see so many from our parish family coming together, young and old, for a delicious Friday Supper, great conversation, and some fun activities for the kids. Supper is served from 5-7 PM. Come have a Lenten Supper then join us in the Church for Stations of the Cross at 7PM!
A Special Word of Gratitude…to our Pastoral Staff for organizing and leading a wonderful Lenten Evening of Reflection. Those who attended were given a simple supper, an age-appropriate talk and activity for the kids, and a wonderful presentation by Father José Mercado for the adults. We wish to say thank you to the Cheshire Knights of Columbus Santa Fe Council #2978 who gave of their time and talent to prepare the simple supper for those who attended. It really was a wonderful event that ended with a representative of each group sharing with the larger group what they learned and are taking into their prayer on this journey of the Lenten Season.
I wish to express A HUGE THANK YOU to our parish and community for your support of Saint Bridget School!!! A special thank you to all who assisted in so many ways to make the 2019 Saint Bridget School Mardi Gras Auction such a huge success. I am humbled and edified by the generosity of the greater Cheshire community. We are especially grateful to our major sponsors:
Mardi Gras Court Sponsor: Saint Bridget of Sweden Parish Family.
Marching Saints Sponsors: PPI Gas Distribution, Inc., Rowland Technologies, and Webster Bank.
French Quarter Sponsors: Biller Associates, Christopher & Lilia Bunick, Carrano Law Firm, Complete Environmental Services, Daniels Orthodontics, Feldman Orthodontics, Ion Bank, Professional Coaching, LLC, Ricci Construction Corp., SERVPRO of Milford-Orange-Stratford, and Votto Vines Importing.
Garden District Sponsors: Device42, Rupert & Pia Dogbey, Eastern Fuel Corporation, F.F. Hitchcock Company, Inc., LaRosa Construction, LIVE EVERY DAY A Physical Therapy, Orthotic & Prosthetics Co., Pediatric & Medical Associates, PC., Pepperland Marketing, Sound Spectrum/Club Lucent, and Viron Rondo Osteria.
Bourbon Street Sponsors: John & Kelly Brucato, Dr. Pingfei Guan, Anna and Cole Kowalski, Pediatric Associates of Cheshire, PC, and Richard & Wendy Thayer.
I am likewise very grateful to all the school board members, the companies, and all the families who donated items, took out ads (we had an amazing amount of support from companies placing ads this year), and all who came and enjoyed the evening and supported our school with their generosity.
Last, but certainly not least, our gratitude to this year’s co-chairs Mrs. Tonya Baril Pelletier and Mrs. Emily Negron and to the many people who served on the committee, solicited donations, and helped to make this event such a wonderful evening and a huge success. To you all I say “Thank you!”
The Saint Bridget School Auction, presented by the Home & School Association, has become the largest fundraiser for the school with all proceeds directly benefitting our students. The funds raised have helped us expand our educational technology, improve the safety and security of our school campus, as well as bring exciting and important educational school programs for our children to enhance their learning environment. The success of this event and so much of our fundraising is that the proceeds really do impact our students. It is all for the children! On behalf of our students and our entire school family I say “Thank you!”
As always, remember to pray for our parish family and ask God’s blessings as we build His kingdom here. Please know that I am praying for you, and I ask for your prayers for me, that together through the intercession of Saint Bridget of Sweden, our Patroness, and united in the Eucharist, we will reflect the presence of Jesus to the world.