Dear Parish Family,

A Heart of Gratitude to God for You!

First and foremost, we have much for which to be thankful! As your pastor, I am so grateful and proud of the way our parishioners have responded during these unprecedented times. You who have supported and sacrificed for our parish family have ensured that the presence and ministry of Jesus Christ continues on in our little part of the world! The parish is the local embodiment of Jesus Christ; that is why the Church is called the Body of Christ. We collectively embody Him for one another and for the community around us. Not even a pandemic can extinguish the light of Christ burning in new and unexpected ways. In the face of how Satan has used social media to enslave the hearts of so many, we are using those same means in a good and fruitful way!

Despite a tumultuous 2020-21, the faith is alive and growing strong at St. John! That’s because our hope has been placed not in man, but in God, whose love never fails. And so, we give thanks to God and him working through you! You who have given of yourself through your time, talent, and treasure… do you sense God’s delight in you? Take time in prayer to savor God’s pleasure and to thank him for the privilege of helping bring his mission in the world to fulfillment. It is from this “Heart of Gratitude” that we open ourselves to continue God’s good work of healing and salvation for his people.

In these pages, you can review our stewardship of the financial resources God has blessed our parish through your generosity! You can do the math and see that many of you have opened your hearts to share the fruit of your labors as an offering to God and his Church. My heart is filled with gratitude to God for you and your partnering with me to fulfill the Great Commission with which Christ has charged us! THANK YOU!

Taking Care of the “Mother Church of Jackson”

You’ll notice that our Witness to Hope projects have focused more on our St. John School and St. Joseph Church, but now we will finally turn our attention to the maintenance and beautification of our 165-year treasure of St. John Church. Next weekend, on October 17, the Order of Alhambra will be presenting a bronze plaque recognizing St. John as a “church important to the history of the Catholic Church in the Jackson area.” It is a fitting tribute. As you know, St. John Church is the Mother Church of Jackson. From these sacred grounds, the Catholic faith flourished throughout Jackson County.

The deeper meaning of “the Church” goes beyond buildings, and the true essence of the Church are the faithful people of God who are the “living stones” who have Christ as her foundation. It is that spiritual edifice of which I am most proud. Our numbers have gradually increased to over 800 people in weekly attendance. We have called and even knocked on the door of many of those who have yet to return in order to deliver them the candle the bishop gifted everyone. While we are not yet back to our usual 1100 people from pre-Covid days, I am very hopeful that, even though we may be smaller, WE WILL BE STRONGER!

Please invite back, or for the first time, people in your life who are without God in their lives now. They will be eternally grateful to you!

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Chas