Please note: There will be NO morning Mass at either St. James or St. Joseph on January 6th, 7th or 8th. Also, there will be no Saturday confessions heard on Saturday, January 9th.Special Confession Times for the coming year of Mercy
Sacrament of Reconciliation-Every Tuesday
As you know, Pope Francis has declared a year of mercy in our Catholic Church throughout the world starting Dec. 8, 2015 and concluding November 20, 2016. Mercy has been a key and important centerpiece of Pope Francis’ preaching and ministry since his election on March 13, 2013. He wants our church to be a church focused on God’s abundant mercy and our call to be bearers of that ministry to one another.
The Sacrament of Penance is where we Catholics most beautifully and tangibly experience God’s mercy. Our Lord comes to us in that powerful sacrament not as judge, but as “physician of mercy.” When we are freed from our sins, we come to more fully accept and live according to God’s law of love in all our relationships with God and one another.
Knowing the importance of this Sacrament of Penance in our spiritual lives, and to highlight God’s mercy in the coming “year of mercy” called by Pope Frances, Bishop Morlino has asked all priests throughout our Diocese of Madison to offer a two hour confession times on one evening each week to make this powerful sacrament more available to our people. Thus, starting with Advent and continuing through the “Year of Mercy” which closes Nov. 20, 2016, our parish will have confessions every Tuesday night from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. The priests are to offer this time of confession in the Church where they are in residence. Thus, I will be hearing confessions at St. James Church each week and Fr. Manuel Mendez will be hearing confessions at our St. Joseph Church each week.
We will still be having our previously scheduled confession times. Thus, English confessions will be available as usual on Saturday mornings, 9:15 – 9:45 am. Fr. Manuel will still have his regular time for Spanish confessions.
Because of these added ample times for confessions, we will suspend our Advent and Lent Communal Penance services for Advent 2015 and Lent 2016.
May God’s mercy and grace flow into our hearts throughout this coming year of mercy and make us more merciful and loving in all our relationships.
Msgr. Tom Baxter