October is Respect Life Month.
I would like to address the topic of Respect Life Month from several perspectives. However, I would first like to ask, what do these words mean to you? My guess is that for many people, the subject of abortion is the first thing that comes to mind. Every time I think about the subject of abortion, a flood of feelings comes over me. I think about the fact that now two generations of young adults have grown up in an American society in which the legality of abortion under almost any circumstance is taken for granted. This is true even for Catholics. I have witnessed terrible consequences, resulting in feelings of my own ranging from anger to heartbreak. It made me very angry when working in health care to meet women who were furious that they were denied coverage by their health insurance company for more than two abortions, since they felt this was their right. It has been heartbreaking to know friends or people I have ministered to who aborted children after sexual assault or terminated pregnancies because of profound anomalies in fetal development. It has been especially poignant to know of couples who desperately wanted their own child but aborted several others because of multiple viable embryos resulting from in vitro fertilization. These are all very different circumstances. I defend the church's theological position against the taking of human life. I also know that all of these examples are very different and they require different pastoral responses and sometimes great compassion. During this Respect Life Month, please do pray for an end to indiscriminate elective abortion but also pray for women and men who sometimes face terribly painful decisions in their lives.
Respecting human life, however, relates not just to a single issue but to a range of issues, as is pointed out by our bishop in his letter which is also part of today's bulletin. As Cardinal Bernardin so often said about a consistent ethic of life, every issue may not have the same level of significance but all of the life issues are all related and important. Designating October as Respect Life Month helps to draw our attention to this fact and gives us the opportunity to do several things: First, we can take the time to learn more about church teaching and the reasons for it. Secondly, we can spend some time in prayer and reflection about helping change to take place, not only in terms of laws in our society, but even change within ourselves, so that our own views can become more consistent with an attitude of respect for all of human life.
During this month of October, we will also be focusing on stewardship. I would like to suggest that even this has bearing on respect for life. We respect the life that God gave us when we use our time and talent for things that are good and healthy and helpful for other people. During the weekend of Oct. 20-21, we will be holding a "Discovery Fair," a time when you can learn how to identify some of your own giftedness and find out about opportunities within the parish to share your time and talents.
We show respect for the life of the church and its people, including both our own parishioners and those who are served by our parish, when together, we financially support all of the ministries of Mary Queen of Heaven through the Sunday offertory. Fall is the time when we talk about stewardship in all its dimensions. We are good stewards when we take care of what is entrusted to us and when we share what we have (time, talent, and treasure) out of gratitude to God for what we have been given.
During this month, you will be hearing more about the possibilities for sharing your time and talent with the parish. You will also begin receiving letters about our annual Sunday offertory renewal program. As you know, our last annual report was wonderful, showing the great progress we have been making in our financial situation. This is thanks to all of you. It is important to remember the reality that some expenses go up every year. In connection with this, but also sensitive to your own circumstances, you will be asked once again to consider what you can contribute financially, increasing your donation if at all possible.
There are also some out-of-the-ordinary ways that some of you may be able to help the parish financially. Please see the bulletin insert for more information about this.
In the meantime, may this be a productive Respect Life Month for our parish.
Dr. Mary Foley, Pastoral Life Coordinator
GO MAKE A DIFFERENCE JOIN THE EFFORT BREAD FOR THE WORLD (BFW) is a Christian voice for ending hunger in communities in the USA and around the world. BFW is a nonpartisan citizens' movement of people of faith. BFW participants lobby our nation's elected officials in Congress by writing letters these decision-makers. We are urging parents to bring their children to Barrett Hall after the Masses on the weekend of Oct. 26 & 27 so that their children can experience writing a letter to our representatives in Congress: Mr. Peter Roskam, our representative in the House and Mr. Dick Durban and Mr. Barack Obama, our two senators in the Senate. Mary Foley supports this project to help the hungry of the USA and the world. Many parishes in the Joliet Diocese participate in this project every year. Our parish is joining this worthy effort. How does this project work? As individuals, we may volunteer in social ministries to help the marginalized in our society. Together we can multiply our effectiveness by participating in an "Offering of Letters" at critical times when members of Congress are addressing budgetary legislation that is important to hungry people Members of our MQH parish will be invited to write letters (this is the "Offering of Letters" project) after Masses on October 26 & 27. These SHORT letters will be mailed to our representatives in Congress. In these letters we will urge our legislators to cast their ballots in favor of providing funding for the hungry of our country and around the world. IT IS THAT SIMPLE!!!!! Religious Education News MARKET DAY is next Saturday, October 13th. Reminder: On Wednesday, October 17th there will be a special session for all 8th graders from 6PM to 8:15PM in Barrett Hall. Details are available from the classroom catechists and from the letter that has been mailed home to parents. FAMILY MASS Sunday, October 21st at 10:30AM we will celebrate our first Family Mass of the year. Sixth graders will receive their Bibles in a special presentation. We invite all of our Religious Education children and families to attend. What is Christ Renews His Parish (CHRP)? It's a two-night, three-day, Jesus-centered, spiritual renewal where a team of men (for the men's weekend) and a team of women (for the women's weekend), together with parishioners, share their faith stories, attend Mass together, enjoy solitude, and celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation which will be available. It is a time of listening, laughter, prayer, fellowship, and celebration of our loving God and Redeemer in our lives. When is it? Men's Weekend: Friday, November 16th starting at 7:30 p.m. and ending on Sunday, November 18th around 6:30 p.m. Women's Weekend: Friday, November 30th at 7:30 p.m. and ending on Sunday, December 2nd around 6:30 p.m. The weekends will take place in the school building. Sleeping accommodations will be provided but it is NOT mandatory to spend the night. You can go home and come back early the next morning. If you need to spend the night in your own bed do not let this be a reason not to attend the weekend. Why should I attend? Has God been calling you lately? Have you felt a void in your relationship with Christ? Would you like to grow a new or stronger relationship with Jesus Christ? Would you like to make new friends? Is God calling you to share your faith with others? Then CHRP is the answer. Sign up today! Call or email Karen Sutkus at (630) 279-3240 - email@example.com or contact Alex Grozik at (630) 530-0503. For more info on any of the above, please call Mary Ann Woods at the REO, 832-8962 Continue to exercise extreme caution in the parking lot on Wednesdays. With the days getting shorter, our little people are more difficult to see. A Vocation View Oh, that today you would hear his voice! Listening brings faith; faith brings hope. Hope brings trust; trust brings courage to follow the Lord. OPEN HOUSE AT UNIVERSITY OF ST. FRANCIS University of St. Francis to host Adult, Graduate and Transfer Open House - Noon -7 p.m. Wednesday, October 10th - Moser Performing Arts Center (Wilcox and Douglas Streets, Joliet). This event is perfect for adult students looking to return to college and continue their pursuit of a higher education degree, or those wishing to continue their current education journey. Those attending can learn about financial aid options and transfer scholarships, receive a credit evaluation from a counselor, talk to USF faculty and MUCH more. RSVP today by calling (800) 735- 7500, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or reply online at www.stfrancis.edu/openhouse Joliet Diocese Council of Catholic Women Eastern DuPage Deanery Annual Fall Coffee Meeting All women in the Eastern DuPage Deanery are cordially invited to the 2007 Fall Coffee; on Tuesday evening, October 16th at 7:30p.m. at Holy Trinity Parish, 111 S. Cass Ave., Westmont. The evening will begin-as we always do-with a special liturgy. We will bring you lots of information and resources that we hope will useful to you. We would like the focus of the evening to be Sharing Parish Program Ideas and of course will include meeting delightful women from area parishes and enjoying delicious refreshments. For more information call Marianne McKeague at 630-834-2183. Prayer Requests To pray for our sick is an important privilege of our parish family. We hope that you will pray for these persons every day. Natalie Baker Joyce Belasiek Katherine Brennan Pam Bondfide Pat Caffarelli Rose Caffarelli Kathy Calzante Cosmore Ciancio Dennis Ciancio Lou Ciancio George Cibula Paul Cirone Ida Corriedo Cynthia Catalano Family Rosemary Davis Deacon Bob Delbeke Trudi Dolato Baby Dobrowolski Virginia Feret Kathy Filipiak Cecilia Garstki Mary Goggins Mary Hagerty Anna Heffel Jen Huwalt Tom Huwalt Michelle Humann Maureen James Richard Jones Kathy Johnston Irene Kmieciak Bernadette Kohn Anne Kostas John Larkin Baby Emma Lynde Marie Mangano Robert Manion Mary Martin Dennis McCabe Mary Piszczor Raymond Mitchell Fred Moss Mary Sabel Oye Geri Pstrzoch Baby Faith Reid Robert Restivo Vera Rossiano Agnes Sabel Patricia Sabel Joaquina Scroppo Linda Barone Simons Jess Smith Mary Spierowski Rachael Thompson John Unger Richard Vanni If you or a family member would like to be included in our prayers, please call the rectory at 279-5700. Also, please let us know when a name should be removed. Please see our website at www.maryqueenpreschool.org and contact the school office for more information and registration. (630) 833-9500 Preschool classes have begun. We still have some openings in our Tuesday/Thursday class. Come join us! Please come and visit our classroom. Schedule your visit TODAY! ST. VINCENT DEPAUL CLOTHING DRIVE The Mary Queen of Heaven St. Vincent de Paul Society is sponsoring a clothing drive to benefit the needy the weekend of October 13th and 14th. The St. Vincent de Paul Truck will be in the parking lot beginning at 9:00 a.m. on October 13th and will be leaving around 1:00 p.m. on October 14th. Drop off your things on Saturday or bring them when you come to Mass on Sunday. Receipts are always gladly given! For donations of furniture and other large items, please call 630-231-4658 to schedule the truck Faith Sharing (Use with your family or to open meetings) 1. Read the daily gospel. 2. Pause for a minute of silence. 3. Read it again slowly. 4. What word or phrase "jumps out" at me? 5. Share the word or phrase (no explanation). 6. Share a sentence or two about why this touched you. 7. Thank your friends or family. 8. Thank God for the opportunity to share faith (brief prayer). Parish News CCW Membership Dues Ladies-you can still turn in your membership dues. Please place your envelopes in the collection basket at mass or bring them to the rectory. The money collected will be used for various programs sponsored by CCW throughout the year. Peace and Justice Meeting the second Thursday of each month in Mary's Gathering Space. Next meeting, October 11, 2007 at 7:30p.m. Please join us. Time for some Youth Group News Our next meetings: Destiny high school group will meet at 8:30 am on Oct 14th & Oct 28th in school building Wings to Heaven 5th-8th grade Oct 14th & October 28th in Barrett hall 6-8pm We hope you will choose to join us! If you ever have any questions about our youth groups please feel free to call Kathleen Gusloff 832-4348 or email her at The5ofgus@aol.com
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