Dear brother and sisters,
This week we begin the 40 Days of Lent with Ash Wednesday (February 26). Mass will be celebrated at 6:30 am and 12 noon. Liturgy of the Word with Distribution of Ashes, led by Deacon Max, will be celebrated at 5 pm and 7 pm. Also, starting next weekend at all Masses, we will begin a 5-week preaching series entitled “Catholic Atheist.” This series is about the many ways we profess to believe God, but then by our thoughts or actions show that we don’t really trust him or act as if he exists. Throughout the series we will look at five specific ways in which we profess God, but then act and think as if he doesn’t exist. You are encouraged, as always, to be part of our evangelizing mission, and to invite people to weekend Masses and other services this Lent and Easter – to invest in and invite family members and friends who have perhaps fallen away from the practice of faith, to be challenged by this Lenten series and renew their path as disciples.
One opportunity this Lent and Easter at St. John’s is our adult Bible Study. Are you intimidated by the Bible? Do you desire to know more? I know that many practicing Catholics feel that their background and education is lacking when it comes to the Bible. They may have been taught that Bible reading is not something the average lay Catholic should do. I believe strongly that the Catholic Church will experience renewal only when the Word of God is brought to the center of everything we do, especially in people’s study and prayer. “Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible” is an 8-week introductory course that anyone can follow, led by the former Protestant pastor and Catholic layman Jeff Cavins. It is an 8-week overview of the entire Bible that will greatly help you to better understand God’s story. I will facilitate this study on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 8:00 pm on the following dates: March 4, 11, 18; April 1, 22, 29; May 6, 13. I ask for a donation of $20 to purchase the materials (make checks payable to St. John’s). Please sign up by Wednesday February 26 – you can call the parish office at 570-223-9144.