Abouna's Message of the Month

Dear brothers and sisters, members and friends of the Holy Family,


This summer of 2020 is in the middle of an unprecedented, global-wide pandemic. Despite this situation, Holy Family members maintain their commitment and dedication with the same energy and passion for their church, despite the absence of social and fundraising events. The month of August is a time for relaxing and vacations and we wish all of our families a joyful vacation.


During the month of August, we will celebrate the Transfiguration of the Lord, on Thursday August 6, at 6:00 PM. Our next major feast is the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, which we will celebrate on Saturday, August 15 at 4:00 PM.

 

In July, Carolyn Marker and Stephen Abbott organized a children’s summer camp style activity fun bag for all children ages 1 to 12. Parents and grandparents brought their children to church to get a bag filled with goodies guaranteed to provide hours of fun for the kids. Thank you Carolyn & Stephen! Unfortunately, the Holy Family Youth Committee Scouts summer camp will not be held this year due to COVID-19.

   

Although the annual church Fall Festival will not be held the same way as normal this year, Gloria Deeb-Reyes, Fall Festival chair, along with several other members of the parish, will be doing their best to adapt to the situation, by holding the raffle, takeout dinners, and possibly a bake sale, a bingo and silent auction. Hopefully some of these activities will begin in early September. Details will come later.


A Pandemic message and relief for Lebanon.


In these days of uncertainty, pandemics and economic crises, where many in our community have been affected in their lives and businesses, the Lord’s message calls for us to care more and share with others. It calls us to reshape or reorganize our life priorities, in a time where the vocabulary has changed. We talk more these days about “essentials?, “safety?, “distancing?, “health?, “contagion?, “virus?, “lockdown?, “family life? and “isolation?. We talk less about investments, profit, making money, projects, plans, social life, events, vacations, cruises, resorts, entertainment and so on. It is like a time of persecution and reclusion inside as a means of defense, and this time against a horrible invisible enemy the size of a virus. There is always a positive side for this sign. It pulls our attention to more essential things in our lives like health, family, assistance, care, faith, hope and charity. It pushes us for more assistance and care for people affected in the situation, in their safety and health and social isolation. Our crusaders of today are the heroes who take the initiative to assist others safely. It can be a phone call to check on others, a nice mailing or a kind email, keeping in touch, sending wishes and gestures. This is in a time where senior and nursing home visits are almost impossible and where schools and day care centers are closed. A small gesture to any person, young or old, counts and brings hope and faith and God’s presence. Our Faith Formation children and MYO youth groups have decided to send a nice mailing to many of the elderly and sick of the community, reminding them that they are in our minds and thoughts and prayers. You can imagine how much it will mean for someone to receive a letter of support from a youth or child of the community.


One additional thought came from our U.S. Eparchy (You may read the plea here...). The Maronite Bishops around the World are waging a campaign of support and relief for our brothers and sisters in distress in Lebanon, the country of origin for the majority of the families in our church community. They are urging the Maronite communities around the world to show whatever support available by sending their donations to Caritas-Lebanon, the major Catholic charity in Lebanon and the Middle East. Every penny counts. Lebanon is affected by a dramatic economic situation and is now under economic siege. People are facing a 100 years ago WWI famine and starvation style crisis, topped by the pandemic. Responding to this call, Holy Family church is sending support to Caritas-Lebanon through the Maronite Eparchy in Saint Louis. If you can, you may send your checks to Holy Family with the memo: Caritas-Lebanon. Thank you for your support to your Maronite brothers and sisters in Lebanon, where the last Christian majority of the Middle East is still surviving. Prayers are always a very effective way of support and they are powerful. The Maronite bishops’ letter is included in this bulletin and will be sent via email and posted on Facebook and the church website.


I wish you a great and blessed month of August.



Yours in Christ Jesus,

Father Emmanuel Nakhle-Ghorr, Pastor


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