August 8, 2021: Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Dear Friends in Christ,

The first Sunday in August marked my first month as pastor of Blessed Sacrament and Saint Matthew.  It has been a busy and wonderful month!  I forgot how challenging and joyful it is to be a pastor!  We have had big changes in the leadership of the thriving Cardinal Shehan school, we are working on finding a new person for our maintenance position, still searching for a Gospel choir director for Blessed Sacrament, fixing our dying air conditioning system in the Church, fixing and improving other facility issues, developing a new welcome ministry, we’ve reconvened the Green Team just in time for the upcoming Season of Creation (September 4th to October 4th), looking at new signage for our campuses, adjusting to new Mass times, coming out of COVID restrictions while worried about possible new ones, figuring out pastoral council by-laws, continuing to unite as a pastorate, caring for many parishioners who are sick, as well as celebrating new lives at funerals, weddings, and baptisms.  We are also planning a welcoming event for me in September around the glorious Feast Day of Saint Matthew (September 21st).  All this and more are going on, and it needs to be said that we are doing all this while still struggling with missing Fr. Joe!

Next weekend, we will celebrate the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  I always think of this day for us as Catholics as a moment to make sure we are getting rest this summer.  Mary being assumed body and soul into Heaven is a good reminder for us if we are caring for ourselves body and soul.  That means some enjoyable time to rest every once and awhile.  To make sure we are praying and staying close to the Lord.  We can do lots of things and accomplish lots of stuff, but it does not matter if we lose our connection to the Lord or stress ourselves out physically, emotionally, or mentally.  I hope you have been able to get away a little bit this summer and I hope you are finding time to be refreshed daily in prayer.  I will be away August 16th to 19th with some of my priest friends on a retreat (we also play some tennis). I’ll see you next Sunday, but while I’m on retreat next week we won’t have daily Mass (August 16th to 19th).  God Bless you!

Sincerely in Christ,

Fr. Matt

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Mass Times for Our Community

From the beginning of the pandemic through the transition to a new pastor, our community has been through a lot.  Our faith and our unity have been our strength.  As we start to come back together to worship, we hope our new trial Mass schedule with help us grow in faith and unity.  We wanted a Mass schedule that makes it possible for Fr. Matt and Deacon Paul to be able to celebrate with us.  We also want to emphasize that we are one Pastorate, one community, with two beautiful worship sites where all are welcome!

Our new schedule is:

  • Saturday:  Confessions at 3 PM and Mass at 5 PM (Saint Matthew)
  • Sunday:  Mass at 9 AM (Saint Matthew) and 11 AM (Blessed Sacrament)

One Sunday Mass will still be livestreamed; the 1st and very last Sundays from Blessed Sacrament and the other Sundays from Saint Matthew.

We hope to continue this schedule for a while and then evaluate again how it is working as a Pastorate community going forward.  Hope to see you at our vigil Mass or the early or late Mass at either of our beautiful Parishes – all are welcome!

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New ministry!

As you read in Fr. Matt’s letter in the bulletin last weekend, we are creating a new ministry in our pastorate that is one of liturgical support, safety, and welcome for our Masses. These ministers are the first people that visitors or regular attendees meet when they come to the church, setting the spiritual climate of the Mass by presenting a joyful attitude as they make others feel welcome and comfortable. They will also facilitate a general sense of order and safety so that everyone is free to worship without interruption.

There are a variety of aspects to this ministry which will call for personal dedication and full participation on the part of volunteers. Training will be required for those who wish to volunteer for this important role.

If you want to know more about this opportunity to serve, please contact the church office no later than Monday, August 23rd, and leave your name and email address or phone number so we can contact you.

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Archdiocesan mental wellbeing initiative

As part of the new Archdiocesan initiative to promote mental wellbeing and to assist our communities in coping with the emotional aftermath of the pandemic, the Archdiocese is exploring the possibility of providing the internationally acclaimed Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training (www.mhamd.org) to parish and school staff throughout the Archdiocese.  If you are interested in joining a cohort of trainers and are a certified MHFA instructor or are interested in becoming one, please send your contact information, location/Parish, and name to Mary Ellen Russell at mrussell@archbalt.org
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Financial peace returns!

Meetings are held VIRTUALLY every Tuesday at 7 PM now through September 14th.

The following link is for registration:  http://fpu.com/1138514

Contact Keyah Spann for more information or questions at 410-852-8453 or mouse153@hotmail.com

Registration is open to both Saint Matthew and Blessed Sacrament.

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  • A Catholic Response to an Epidemic Please note that some of this information was published before all Parishes were closed.
  • Magnificat online – free resources for prayer including each day’s Readings for Mass (weekdays and weekends), Liturgy of the Hours, and more.  To access the Readings for Mass, scroll down to Magnificat online edition, U.S. edition.
  • My Parish App This the Readings and prayers for the Sunday Celebration of the Mass and much more!
  • Find more resources here!

 

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Our collections are lower during the Summer due to vacations, so if you can increase your weekly giving or make a larger gift for the Summer, it would be most appreciated!  If you haven’t already made a donation to our air conditioning collection, please consider doing so every little bit helps!

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Online Rosary – Saturdays at 10 AM:

As covid-19 and other challenges to our society continue to be with us, our prayers and our actions are still needed!  Therefore, you are invited to join us for a chat, share what you are experiencing, and share what you would like to pray for as we pray the Rosary together.

For this meeting we ask you to register, just for an added layer of security. To register click this link and follow the directions:

https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJAvcumgqzIrG9NsuLmWWuw8OlW8ivNW9TM8

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about how to join the meeting.  You can register up until Saturday morning at 9:30 AM.

 

 

 

Weekly Bible Study with Deacon Paul from Blessed Sacrament – Thursdays from 8 to 9 PM:

This Bible Study is conducted by phone conference and the conversation concerns the Readings for the coming Sunday.  Anyone is welcome to call in and participate or simply listen.

The number to call is:  425-436-6356 

When asked for the code dial:  698937

 

You can also join the call by ZOOM!

Join Zoom meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86893786919

Meeting ID:  868 9378 6919
By phone with no video:  1-301-715-8592

 

The Readings for each week’s Bible Study can be found on the USCCB website at the following link:

https://bible.usccb.org/readings/calendar

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You can watch one weekend Mass LIVE on Facebook and on YouTube every Sunday!  See the schedule above for Mass online.  Visit our Facebook page or YouTube channel to watch recorded Masses from previous weeks.

PLEASE call or check our website for ALL schedule changes.

The Parish office hours are Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 4 PM.  Please continue to send in your Offertory envelopes and consider signing up for GiveCentral online giving!

2021-08-13T07:39:17-05:00
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