December 6, 2022

Dear Friends,

Holy Days of Obligation are like Sundays: “the faithful are to refrain from engaging in work or activities that hinder the worship owed to God, the joy proper to the Lord’s Day, the performance of the works of mercy, and the appropriate relaxation of mind and body.” (Catechism, 2185)  Do we treat Holy Days of Obligation like Sundays?  We have a chance to do so with the Holy Day of Obligation of the Immaculate Conception that falls on Thursday, December 8.  It’s also the Patronal Feastday of the United States and very special for Franciscans who, by the theological acumen of Blessed John Duns Scotus, helped pave the way for its infallible dogmatic declaration ex cathedra (“from the chair” of the Pope) in 1854 by Pope Pius IX.

The Vigil Mass for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception will be tomorrow, Wednesday, December 7, at 7:00 pm at St. Joseph Chapel (400 South Blvd. West, Pontiac, MI 48341).  (We will hold our regular First Wednesday Mass tomorrow, Dec. 7, at Noon.)  Mass on Thursday, Dec. 8, will be at Noon with Confessions at 11:00 am, followed by the Rosary.  We will observe the “Hour of Grace” by reciting the penitential psalm, Psalm 51, at Noon.  This is in keeping with the Archbishop’s call to observe the first two weeks of Advent in a spirit of penance and reparation.  Come, and gather under the mantle of Mary, who will help us follow Jesus faithfully while crushing Satan under our feet.

Information about Fr. John Hardon’s Basic Catechism Course (from the Marian Catechist Apostolate) will be announced briefly at the end of Mass.  The certified catechist, Paul Ameye, will be available after Mass to provide more information.  Classes will be held on the 2nd & 4th Thursday January-May at 6:30.  This adult study of our beautiful Catholic Faith will enable you to better live it, share it and defend it as the Holy Spirit so wishes.

To communicate with me, please email me directly at [email protected] or call/text me at (313) 727-9784.  Blessed Virgin Mary, the Immaculate Conception, pray for us and for the United States!    

In Jesus, Mary & Joseph,
Fr. Alex Kratz, OFM                                     
Spiritual Director of Terra Sancta Ministries