Week of August 14

You are invited to a historical diocesan-wide celebration at the BOS Center in Springfield – To celebrate the Diocesan Year of the Eucharist and the 100th anniversary of the transfer of the See city from Alton to Springfield, the Eucharistic Congress is taking place Saturday, October 28 at the BOS Center in Springfield. This dynamic experience will include nationally recognized Catholic speakers, adoration, confession, and Mass. The arena will be packed with thousands of Catholics from across the diocese. To attend, contact the parish office as each parish in the diocese is given a specific number of available seats. You can inquire about reserving a seat through the parish office starting July 1, or if you are interested in volunteering, you can register now! For more information on the event or volunteering or financially supporting/sponsoring the event, visit dio.org.

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The Man of the Shroud Exhibit coming to Vandalia – You are invited to see a replica of the Shroud of Turin, which is believed by many to be the burial cloth of Jesus, and to learn about the history and science behind it by experiencing The Man of the Shroud Exhibit, coming to Mother of Dolors Parish in Vandalia for display Sept. 8-14.

The Center for the Study of the Passion of the Christ and the Holy Shroud has developed a moving and informative mobile exhibit on the Shroud of Turin. The centerpiece is a full-length canvas replica of the Shroud made by the Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association, Inc. In addition, the mobile exhibit contains a large, crucified corpus showing the wounds of Christ corresponding to the passion narrative in the Gospel accounts and the wounds shown on the Shroud. The exhibit contains over 31 popup display banners detailing the history and science of the Shroud.

To check it out, visit Mother of Dolors Parish Center at 705 N. St. Clair St., Vandalia, IL 62471. There is no charge, and it’s open to the public.

The exhibit is open on the following days and times:

Sept. 8: 5-7p.m.

Sept. 9: Noon-2 p.m.; 5-7 p.m.

Sept 10: 1-4 p.m., with Shroud scholar Mark Antonacci giving a talk at 2 p.m.

Sept. 11: 10 a.m.-noon; 5-7 p.m.

Sept. 12: 10 a.m.-noon; 5-7 p.m.

Sept. 13: 10 a.m.-noon; 5-7 p.m.

Sept. 14: 10 a.m.-noon

On Friday, Sept. 15 through Sunday, Sept. 17, Father Lawrence Carney will give a retreat on the “Devotion to the Holy Face” at Our Sorrowful Mother’s Ministry in Vandalia, which will also include the Man of the Shroud Exhibit. More information can be found by visiting: osmm.org.

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Springfield Diocesan Council of Catholic Women announce convention, “Christ is Alive”– Wednesday, Sept. 27, will be the 95th annual Springfield Diocesan Council of Catholic Women (SDCCW) Convention. This year’s program, “Christ is Alive,” takes place from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at Sacred Heart Griffin High School’s west campus in Springfield. Bishop Thomas John Paprocki will be the main celebrant of the Mass at St. Agnes Church at 11 a.m., which is next to the school campus. Key-note speaker, Cathy Becker, the director faith formation for St. Agnes Parish, will give a talk titled, “New maps for a new landscape.” Her talk will guide participants in looking at the changing landscape of people involved in our faith, find the fixed landmarks, and how to chart a new map with new routes to bring people back to the faith, engage new seekers of the faith, and find hope in our faith. Registration is $50 and includes morning refreshments and lunch. Register through your parish or find the registration form on dio.org. Questions, contact Janet Zimmerman at Janetzim14@yahoo.com or 217-494-4743.

Annual Respect Life and Rosary Walk:  This year’s annual Diocesan Respect Life Mass and prayer procession is scheduled for Saturday, October 7, 2023, Holy Family Parish, Granite City.  Bishop Paprocki will celebrate Mass at 9:00 am, followed by a prayer procession around the abortion facility in Granite City.  Lunch and speaker will follow the procession.

National Catholic Youth Conference – NCYC is a powerfully unique three-day experience of prayer, community, evangelization, catechesis, service and empowerment for Catholic high school teenagers that will be hosted on November 16 – 18, 2023 at the Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The event includes inspiring keynote speakers, breakout sessions on a variety of topics for teenagers and the celebration of Holy Mass with people from all over the country. Registration for passes to NCYC is being coordinated through the Office for Catholic Education to get a discount. The price for passes increases October 1. For more information, please contact Kyle Holtgrave at (217) 698-8500, ext. 154 or emailkholtgrave@dio.org.

New, free-to-watch documentary features Central Illinois miracles and incredible stories of faith – In a world full of selfishness, hardships, and despair, more and more people are asking, “God, are you up there?” God is Alive, an original documentary, created and produced by the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, answers that question in an adventurous, impactful, and local way, and that will inspire and energize your faith life. God is Alive takes viewers to Jerseyville, Springfield, Peoria, Quincy, and Decatur and features five stories of incredible faith/miraculous events that you will be surprised to learn about and touch on many things people struggle with such as prayer, feeling unforgivable, and dealing with an incredible hardship.To watch the documentary, go to dio.org/documentary.

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The backstory of the making of our documentary, God is Alive – Thousands have watched our documentary, God is Alive | Incredible stories of faith and miraculous events in Central Illinois, and it has inspired them and impacted their relationship with God in profound ways. So, how did this unique project even come about? What was the inspiration, how was it filmed, what happened behind the scenes, and what were some funny moments? Go to dio.org/podcast or search “Dive Deep” on all the major podcast platforms to listen and subscribe. After listening to the podcast, watch the documentary at dio.org/documentary.

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Got cereal? – St. John’s Breadline in Springfield needs donations of cereal to help fight food insecurity, starting with the most important meal of the day! All donations can be brought to the back service delivery door every day from 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Celebrate 150 years with the Dominican Sisters of Springfield – The Springfield Dominican Sisters are pleased to welcome you to Sacred Heart Convent for a celebratory Mass in honor of the 150th anniversary of the founding of their community. Please join them at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, August 19, 2023, at Sacred Heart Convent Chapel, 1237 W. Monroe Street, Springfield. RSVP by August 1 is appreciated. This may be made either with a phone call to 217-787-0481 or at springfieldop.org/150years/. With plenty of off-street parking and a building accessible to everyone, you will be warmly and gratefully welcomed. For those unable to be present, a live-stream is offered at springfieldop.org/livestream/.

Wonder what it’s like to be a Catholic sister? Come and see – More women than you might realize sense God drawing them toward a life of fulfillment and happiness as Catholic sisters. Often, they miss the opportunity to explore because they aren’t sure what to do once tuned in to this prayerful intuition. Walking the path of vocation discernment begins, for many women, with a “Come & See” weekend at a residence of Catholic sisters. The Dominican Sisters of Springfield, Ill., have eleven such events scheduled throughout 2023-2024. There are six in-person weekends and five virtual events planned for September 2023 through December 2024. Single Catholic women ages 21-45 are welcome to register for any—or more than one—of each event. The first event is in-person September 15-17, 2023. Registrations for that and all events are now being accepted at springfieldop.org/comesee.

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Know someone who would make a good deacon or thinking about it?

Called to serve? Come and seeAll men discerning a vocation to the diaconate are invited to a weekend experience at the Villa Maria Catholic Retreat and Conference Center on Friday, September 8 (4 p.m.) through Saturday, September 9, (2 p.m.). During the weekend, you will meet the men and wives currently in formation, proctor classroom lecture, join in meals, and have social time. In addition to attending Mass with the deacon candidates and wives, you will participate in the Liturgy of the Hours and Morning and Evening Prayer. Wives of men discerning a vocation are invited and strongly encouraged to attend.  

To register for this event please use this link form.jotform.com/231135196152046.

Visit the Cathedral in Springfield or Ss. Peter and Paul Church in Alton, receive an indulgence! – The diocesan-wide Year of the Eucharist going on now has a heavenly treasure of our Catholic faith attached to it. Bishop Thomas John Paprocki received permission from the Holy See, granting a plenary indulgence to those who make a pilgrimage to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield or Ss. Peter and Paul Church in Alton (the “Old Cathedral”) now through Dec. 8. One must also partake in the other usual conditions to receive this indulgence by going to Confession, receiving the Eucharist, and saying prayers for the intention of the Pope. These acts “may be carried out several days preceding or following the performance of the prescribed works. But it is more fitting that communion and the prayer for the pope’s intentions take place on the day the work is performed” (Handbook of Indulgences, Norms for Indulgences, 23.3). An indulgence a gift and grace that remits the temporal punishment due to a sin.

Project Rachel – Help for women and men to heal from the pain of abortion. For assistance call 1-877-RACHEL-5. 

Retreat for married couples offered –Worldwide Marriage Encounter presents weekend experiences for married couples to rekindle romance, enhance meaningful communication, and deepen and renew commitment. Sign-up now! For more information or to apply, go to wwme.org or call Terry & Eric Engholm at 314-649-7317. Next one:

8/4/2023 – 8/6/2023 – St. Peters, MO

9/29/2023 – 10/1/2023 – St. Peters, MO

12/1/2023 – 12/3/2023 – St. Peters, MO

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August 20, 2023
20th Sunday in Ordinary Time

“For the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.”  –  Romans 11:29

God has a special mission in mind for each of us.  He has given us the gifts we need to accomplish that mission.  We are called to be good stewards by using those gifts to do the work that He has planned for each of us.  If we deny our gifts or fail to use them as God calls us to use them, then some part of His work will be left undone.  Each of us has a part in God’s salvation plan.

August 27, 2023
21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Or who has given the Lord anything that he may be repaid?”  –  Romans 11:35

St. Paul reminds us of a central fact of stewardship.  We cannot give God anything – He already owns it all.  God made everything, including us.  Since we are made in His image, we too, are called to be generous.  How we use our God-given gifts becomes our gift back to Him.  Gratitude for all we have been given opens our hearts to joyful generosity!  And, through our generosity, we just may be the answer to someone else’s prayer.

September 3, 2023
22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

“What profit would there be for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life?”  –  Matthew 16:26

St. Francis of Assisi said, “Remember, you are what you are in the eyes of God, and nothing else.”  We often forget this stewardship wisdom when we spend all of our time, talent and treasure to gain more of the world’s riches.  We need to set our priorities based on God’s values and not the values of the material world. 

September 10, 2023
23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

“You, son of man, I have appointed watchman for the house of Israel…”  –  Ezekiel 33:7

Many of us are generous with our gifts.  However, many of us are not generous in proportion to the gifts we have been given.  How often do we give at the minimum level required?  Remember, the Lord calls us to nurture and develop our gifts and to give back with increase.  He calls us to be generous with all the gifts, especially the one that means the most to us.

September 17, 2023
24th Sunday in Ordinary Time

“For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord; so then, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.” – Romans 14:8

This is the essence of stewardship – everything we have and everything we are is a gift from God.  We aren’t “owners” of anything, we are merely “stewards” of the gifts that God has given us, especially our very own lives.  Pray to God, daily, and ask Him how He is calling you to the live the life that He intended for you.

September 24, 2023

Stewardship Awareness Sunday in the Archdiocese of St. Louis
25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last”.  – Matthew 20:16

You’ve heard the saying “it’s not where you start, but how you finish.”  This certainly applies to this Bible passage.  We have a responsibility not only for our own lives, but for the lives of others as well.  We are called to generously share our gifts with others, not hoard them for our own use.  Our sincere gratitude and cheerful generosity will help us live “God-centered” lives and not “self-centered” lives.