Fr. ChasDear Parish Family,

With today’s Passion Sunday celebration, Holy Week is upon us! I pray that it may be a moving week for each of us, one that draws us closer to the Lord that intimately knows our suffering, but also raises us up from it through the power of his Resurrection. May you enter into the sorrow of the Lord’s Passion, but at the week’s end, may you also know the peace and joy that comes from the certainty that sadness and death do not have the final say. Jesus assures those who take up their cross with him, “I have conquered the world!”

Extra Mass on Easter Sunday at 5:00 P.M.
Since the only allowable Saturday Vigil Mass on April 4 is the Easter Vigil at 8:45 p.m., we decided to have an extra Mass on Sunday at 5:00 p.m. this year. This offers our parishioners greater flexibility in their family plans. Some may be out of town for the weekend, yet still want the comfort of their home parish for their Easter Mass celebration. We hope this extra Mass on Sunday evening makes that possible.

Divine Mercy Novena Begins on Good Friday
One only has to look at the news to realize that there are a lot of crazy things going on all over the world, from bombings and murders to scandals and abuses of power. The world needs God’s saving mercy. We pray that the world may know this healing and purifying mercy of God in a special way each year on the first Sunday after Easter, known as Divine Mercy Sunday (April 12 this year). In preparation for that feast, there is a Divine Mercy novena that begins on Good Friday, which this year falls on April 3.

Should you not be familiar with that novena, there are red pamphlets in the entrance vestibules at both St. John Church and St. Joseph Oratory that explain the devotion and how to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet. We will pray it as a community on Good Friday at St. Joseph Oratory at 3:00 p.m.

Side Screens for Holy Week Participation
With all the special celebrations we have this Holy Week, there are many parts that we do not have memorized and may not be in the hymnals. To promote greater participation from the congregation, we are projecting the words onto two side screens. This also helps our guests who may not attend all year round. It likewise helps Fr. Kurian and I celebrate these special holy week liturgies more smoothly and prayerfully since we do not have to give as many directions about what to do or say next. We hope you find them helpful.

Holy Week Blessings to You!