Greetings of Christ's Peace and Joy! Hope you all had a blessed week.
Thanks to those who helped with the Sacred Heart Club Christmas Gathering. All participants had an enjoyable time.
"Who Are You?"
John the Baptist not only knows his own identity, he knows Jesus' too. He was not there to compete with Jesus, but to prepare the way for him.
The journey of Advent calls us to know ourselves better and to know Jesus better. We do so through personal and communal prayers, acts of charity, and fasting. I was blessed to attend a three day retreat this past week, which offered me a lot of time to look inside of me and to encounter Jesus. One of the things I did was to finish reading the book I started to read a few weeks ago, The Church of Mercy, by Pope Francis. Actually this book is a collection of his homilies. It contains a lot of good news and practical wisdom for Christian living. It is an excellent book for spiritual nourishment.
The primary point Pope Francis makes in the book is that "God always thinks mercifully." God is merciful to us, therefore, our Church needs to be merciful, and we as Christians need to be merciful to one another.
This mercy of God is concretely experienced through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. If you haven't been to Reconciliation for a while, this is a good time to celebrate it.
To be Jesus Christ in Chinatown
"The disciple simply burns his boats and goes ahead. He is called out… The old life is left behind, and completely surrendered. The disciple is dragged out of his relative security into a life of absolute insecurity… out of the realm of the finite… into the realm of infinite possibilities."
Prayer to Holy Family
+ ******* Faith and Charity *******
In his Holiness, Benedict XVI's Lenten message: "The celebration of Lent, in the context of the Year of Faith, offers us a valuable opportunity to meditate on the relationship between faith and charity … The Christian life consists in continuously scaling the mountain to meet God and then coming back down, bearing the love and strength drawn from him, so as to serve our brothers and sisters with God's own love … In the Church, contemplation and action, symbolized in some way by the Gospel figures of Mary and Martha, have to coexist and complement each other."
Please join us, as a faith community, to set aside an hour once a month, to offer it in silent meditation before the Blessed Sacrament, and to pray together— the Chaplet of Divine Mercy.
The fruit of Silence is prayer. The fruit of Prayer is faith. The fruit of Faith is love. The fruit of Love is service. The fruit of Service is peace.
+ Second Collection on Sunday Dec. 14th for Retirement Fund for Religious TODAY!
Senior Catholic sisters, brothers, and religious order priests have spent their lives ministering to others, often for little pay, if any. Their sacrifices now leave their religious communities without adequate savings for retirement and health care. Your gift to the collection for the Retirement Fund for Religious supports the day-to-day care of roughly 35,000 senior religious, providing necessities such as prescription medications and nursing care. Please give to those who have given a lifetime.
+ Class for 3 and 4 year olds TODAY!
There will be class today—learning about Jesus for 3 & 4 year olds. Please meet Sr. Caritas at the east stairs.of the church.
+ Calling all kids and parents!
The Nativity Play will be performed by the children during the 5 p.m. Family Mass on Christmas Eve. Rehearsals will be on Sundays, December 14 & 21 at 12:30pm. ALL children are invited to participate. Please contact Christine Delfin or the rectory if you are interested in participating in this time-honored tradition.
+ Cantonese RCIA
We are looking into the possibility of starting a Cantonese RCIA program. If you know someone who might be interested, please invite them to consider it. If you are willing to help to jump start this program, please speak to Father Li.
+ Calendar 2015
Please pick up a copy of the English Liturgical Calendar after mass at the Church entrance table today. One copy per family please.
+ Offering Envelopes 2015
Please pick up your donation box at the church entrance table after mass.
+ CHICAGO COMMISSION ON HUMAN RELATION (CCHR)
is the enforcement arm of the City of Chicago's Discrimination Laws, assists Hate Crime Victims, provides Community Tension Intervention and Educational Workshops for Youth and Adults. It investigates complaints of discrimination in employment, housing, access to public places and services, and credit. It has enforcement powers to punish acts of discrimination. To report acts of discrimination, call 312-744-4111. They provide service in Chinese too. Flyers are available at the Church entrance table. For more information go to: www.cityofchicago.org/humanrelations.
+ BEATIFICATION OF POPE PAUL VI
On October 19, Pope Francis celebrated the closing Mass of the Synod on the Family and the beatification of Pope Paul VI. Read more on The Synod of Bishops on the family on Catholic News Service's special site. Read how Pope Paul influenced an American bishop and about his emphasis on peace and justice issues
+ UPDATED UPCOMING SPECIAL EVENTS & SCHEDULE 2014:
December 14th: Family Mass at 9:30am, return your Baby Bottles
Please return your baby bottles TODAY!
December 15th: St. Therese School Christmas Concert in church at 6pm
December 21st: Mandarin Mass at 11am followed by Luncheon & Christmas Cantata
Christmas Eve Mass with Children's Christmas Pageant at 5pm;
Christmas Carols at 11:30pm
Christmas Mass at 12:00am (Midnight Mass)
Christmas Day Mass at 10:00am
Indonesian Mass at 12:00noon
New Year's Eve Mass at 5pm, followed by BENEDICTION and the traditional Hot Pot dinner in the Community Room
2015 January 1st:
New Year's Day Mass at 10:00am
St. Therese Parish
+ INTRODUCING JAMES ERLER, S.J.
James Erler, SJ, is excited to help coordinate Young Adult Ministry (YAM) at St. Therese! A St. Louis native, currently he is pursuing a Master's degree in Social Philosophy at Loyola University. James attended the University of Chicago where he studied History and Chinese and did studies in Ireland and at Peking University. Upon completion of his degree he participated in the Alum Service Corps program, teaching at St. Louis University High School and Loyola Academy of St. Louis before entering the Jesuits in 2011. Since then he has worked in Belize, Nicaragua, Denver, Kansas City, Mobile, and Lafayette, Louisiana.
After returning to Chicago last year, James became chaplain to Loyola's Women's Softball team, started learning Spiritual Direction, and helped Rose Lau with English RCIA at St. Therese. This summer he made his 8-Day Retreat in New York City and worked with St. Francis Xavier's Young Adult ministry in St. Louis, where he happily cheered on the Cardinals! He loves discussing prayer and service and all-things Ignatian/Jesuit Spirituality.
+ From Sr. Caritas….
As we labor for the spread of love and the protection of life, late Rafael Cardinal Merry Del Val's Litany of Humility can be our daily recitation:
"O Jesus! meek and humble of heart, from the desire of being esteemed, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being loved, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being extolled, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being honored, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being praised, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being preferred to others, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being consulted, deliver me, Jesus; from the desire of being approved, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being humiliated, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being despised, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of suffering rebukes, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being calumniated, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being forgotten, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being ridiculed, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being wronged, deliver me, Jesus; from the fear of being suspected, deliver me, Jesus. That others may be loved more than I, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be esteemed more than I, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That, in the opinion of the world, others may increase and I may decrease, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be chosen and I set aside, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be praised and I unnoticed, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be preferred to me in everything, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may become holier than I, provided that I may become as holy as I should, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it."
+ 'CLASSES FOR YOUNG CHILDREN'
after the 9:30am Mass for children 3-4- or 5 years of age. Meet Sister Caritas in the back of Church. All children are welcome and parents are also welcome!
+ Pope Francis on Family
On his visitation to Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day XXVIII, he chastised a world civilization for making money into a god and its dismissive attitude toward the elderly: "You could easily think there is a kind of hidden euthanasia, that is, we don't take care of the elderly; but there is also a cultural euthanasia, because we don't allow them to speak, we don't allow them to act." Hours before, noting it was the Feast of Joachim and Anne, Mary's parents, and Grandparent's Day, the Pope catechized: "How important grandparents are for family life, for passing on the human and religious heritage which is so essential for each and every society! How important it is to have intergenerational exchanges and dialogue, especially within the context of the family." When nations are busy deconstructing the family, enacting euthanasia laws and promoting euthanasia sentiments, viewing the elderly as "unproductive" burdens, rejecting religious values treasured by the elderly as suitable foundations for societal norms, lynching conscience rights, and, ultimately, depriving citizens of wisdom which knows how ruinous these godless currents are, the Pope rightly exhorts the elderly "not cease to be the cultural storehouse of our people, a storehouse that hands on justice, hands on history, hands on values, hands on the memory of the people."
Marriage Issues – You probably have heard of the Supreme Court decision on Defense of Marriage Act. It is only the beginning. Brian Burch of catholicvote.org describes: "the Court invalidated a portion of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and rejected the right of the people to defend a law passed by millions of citizens in California. The Court ducked the question of whether Proposition 8 in California is constitutional – and most importantly, did not create a constitutional right to same-sex marriage." Larry O' Neill author of the "Catholic Vote" states: "Both these are limited court rulings … not Roe vs. Wade type decrees that effect the whole country. In fact …The Prop 8 decision does not even address the merits of the case for or against marriage." In a scathing dissent, Justice Antonin Scalia said: "The majority concludes that the only motive for this Act was the 'bare ... desire to harm a politically unpopular group.' Ante, at 20. Bear in mind that the object of this condemnation is not the legislature of some once-Confederate Southern state…but our respected coordinate branches, the Congress and Presidency of the United States. Laying such a charge against them should require the most extraordinary evidence, and I would have thought that every attempt would be made to indulge a more anodyne explanation for the statute." Read more on: www.catholicvote.org; www.ilcatholic.org; www.usccb.org.
+ Planning Masses
If you would like your family to participate in the December, 2014 planning Mass, please contact Sr. Caritas.
+ Public Parking Meters—FREE on Sundays
If you need a place to park on Sundays, take advantage—the parking meters are free!
+ The Women's Center News
We are happy to pass on your used baby equipment to mothers who cannot afford to buy it. Our need is great because we have two distribution centers. We have a great need for 6 strollers, 3 double strollers, 3 bassinets, 4 bouncers, 6 pack n plays, 2 high chairs, 3 changing tables, 2 wheeled walkers and 6 infant car seats. It will be a great help if you can deliver these to us. For our address, or if a pick-up by a volunteer is needed, please call 773-794-1313.
Diapers in sizes 1, 4, 5 and 6 are urgently needed. We also need gently used winter coats for all ages, boys winter clothing for ages 18 months and older and girls clothing for ages 18 months through 24 months. These must be delivered to us unless accompanied by baby furniture. The families who receive these things are grateful for your generosity. Call 773-794-1313 for our address. Please consider hosting a diaper drive or shower as a Confirmation project, for Scouts, service hours, etc. For information call Jackie at 773-794-8807 or email email@example.com.
+ Bulletin Ads Wanted
Placing ads in our church bulletin is a very cost effective way for businesses to reach potential customers. It is also a great way to support St. Therese. The ads run 365 days a year at very low cost. If you know of any business that can benefit from this reach, please refer them to the church office (312-842-6777). Thanks for your help!
+ Respect Life News
The Hype – On the controversy over Pope Francis' so-called softening on the gay issue, the Archdiocese Respect Life Office Director Margie Breen comments, "… if the media had covered Jesus' interaction with the Samaritan woman at the well ..., they probably would have said that Jesus softened his stance on the sins of adultery and fornication. I don't think that they understand that with Catholic teaching comes a pastoral component, calling believers to meet people where they are at. We are supposed to walk with folks on their faith journey as others have walked with us. Remember, we are all sinners in need of God's mercy."
has resources to serve teens, women and their families facing unplanned pregnancies. We're here to help, without pressuring you. We can talk about your options as you plan for your child's future. We can help you whether you decide to parent your child, or make a plan of adoption. If you are not sure what to do, our 24-hour hotline has caring & professional counselors available to help you. Our services are free and confidential. Call 1-800-CARE-002 or 312-454-1717 or visit www.facebook.com/CCofChicagoAdoptionServices
As part of the Fortnight for Freedom, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is launching a nationwide text messaging campaign, asking Catholics across the country to text the word FREEDOM to 377377. This nationwide network will allow the USCCB to engage directly with Catholics around the country as threats to religious freedom emerge on the national, state and local level. If all Catholics in the country sign up via their mobile phones, it can create the most impactful advocacy networks in the country.
+ Free Bible
we thank the CityOf.com for donated 100 copies of Bible to our parish. If you need a Catholic version of the Bible, please pick up a copy after mass today.
+ Conversational English
We are still offering conversational English classes four times a week and are now accepting new students for the Spring sessions. If interested, please sign up at the church entrance table. Schedules can be worked out with the instructors.
+ Ministry of Care
We need Ministers of Care to bring the Eucharist to hospitalized and homebound parishioners. If you are trained or would like to be trained in this Ministry, please contact Fr. Li or Sr. Caritas.
+ ST. THERESE CHURCH WANTS TO HELP!
Do you come to church only on Easter and Christmas? Or not at all? Are you facing a life altering event: getting married, having a baby, having lost or in the process of losing a loved one, or dealing with a health diagnosis that is frightening? These are situations that need to be faced, either enjoyed and cherished or met with strength and action. Maybe it is time to go back to your roots as a Catholic to help you deal with these life altering situations.
St. Therese Chinese Catholic Church is a Landings parish. Landings was started by Paulist Fathers to help non-practicing Catholics explore their faith and return to the Church in a nonthreatening way. It is a way to share, to be heard and to listen to faith journeys of a group of inactive and active Catholics. All this is conducted with compassionate listening and utmost confidentiality. If you are ready to consider returning to the Church, we are here to give you a helping hand and ensure your safe landing!
Our spring sessions of 1½ hours a week for 8 to 10 weeks will start on Thursday, May 17th at 6:30pm in the St. Francis Assisi room at our church, located at 218 W. Alexander St., Chicago IL 60616. We offer sessions in English, Cantonese and Mandarin. For more information please contact either Sr. Anji Fan or Cita Orendain at our parish office: 312-842-6777 or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you know of inactive Catholics, please pass this on to them.
Landingswas created more than 20 years ago by the late Fr. Jac Campbell, a Paulist priest. He designed it for lay active Catholics to welcome, or "love back" inactive Catholics to the church. It was founded on the belief that we do not have to be trained theologians to share what we believe and to speak honestly about our faith, trusting in the Holy Spirit (from Landings International website). Since it started, over 1.5 million Catholics have returned to the Church through Landings.
Landings is the time for someone who has been away from the Church to explore his/her faith and future within the Church. It is a gentle way to connect with lay people who are steadfast in their faith and who practice it. Questions from the inactive Catholic are welcome and will be answered in light of an active Catholic's faith experience with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Questions that require deeper theological knowledge will be referred to the pastor.
There is a facilitator, a time keeper, a prayer leader and someone to bring the refreshments. A Participant's Journal is given to each participant in the first Landings session. Each participant is asked to read it carefully, a few days before each session. The Journal gives the full schedule of a Landings meeting. It also has 8 to 10 Catholic themes, 1 for each meeting, with references, to help participants understand and reflect on Church teachings and on how the faith is practiced.
Please bear in mind that Landings is not a counseling session or group therapy. It is simply a way for inactive Catholics to discern if coming back to the church is for him/her by listening, sharing and asking questions of active Catholics who are committed to loving them back to the Church.
+ The Respect Life News
+ The United States Council of Catholic Bishops Postcard Campaign
The St. Therese Respect Life Ministry is participating in this campaign to (1) Prevent federal funding and promotion of abortion and (2) Protect rights of conscience in health care.
+ Family: The Foundation of Society
"I was a stranger and you welcomed me." (Matthew 25:35)
The USCCB states that preserving family unity is the cornerstone of comprehensive immigration reform.
Please let our elected officials know we support family union. Send an e-postcard to the U.S. Senate and Congress asking that they pass immigration reform that includes family reunification at www.justiceforimmigrants.org/
Office for Immigrant Affairs and Immigration Education
+ Donations Now Accepted Online
Our parish is now able to accept donations online through PayPal. Please visit our church website at http://www.sttheresechinatown.org/church_home.html or in this page and you will see the yellow "DONATE" button at the bottom of the page.
How to Maximize your PayPal Donations in 4 Easy Steps
Our parish is now able to accept donations online through PayPal! Please go to www.paypal.com, or visit our church website at http://www.sttheresechinatown.org/church_home.html and click on any yellow "PAYPAL" button.
The above steps should now show that the fee is $0 to both parties, and your donation will be sent 100% to St. Therese only!
+ Does your company match donations?
Remember to check if your company matches donations - your gift could be multiplied!
If you are doubled-parked in our parking lot, please leave your phone number on your dashboard. This is so that the owners of the blocked cars can contact you in case they leave before you.
"Do everything calmly and peacefully. Do as much as you can as well as you can. Strive to see God in all things without exception, and consent to His will joyously. Do everything for God, uniting yourself to him in word and deed. Walk very simply with the Cross of the Lord and be at peace with yourself." - St. Francis de Sales
+ Praying for Immigrants
The Office of Immigration of the Archdiocese of Chicago sponsors weekly prayers every Friday at 7:15am Prayer Vigil, to end deportations and Immigration Reform at Broadview Immigrant Detention Center, 1930 S. Beach Street, Broadview, IL
+ HOPE: An Immigrant Story
"I was a stranger and you welcomed me.."(Matthew 25:35)
+ Sunday Mass at Mercy Home on WGN!
The Sunday Mass at Mercy Home moves to WGN, Channel 9 beginning on January 6th. Sunday Mass can be seen every Sunday from 9:30-10:00 a.m.
+ HELP STOP GUN VIOLENCE!
In addition to prayer and learning about the problem of gun violence, one way we can ACT, today, to save the lives of our children is to support the passage of the Certificate of Handguns Registration Act (HB5831). Petitions can be found at the church entrance table. Please sign & support this bill to help STOP GUN VIOLENCE!
+ Words from a new choir member....
Can't sing? I didn't think I could, either. I had every excuse - I can't sing, I don't know how to sing, I can't read sheet music. None of that matters. What matters is that I like singing and that I like spending time with people in the choir. Lily and Kimberly took care of the rest. They are teaching me how to read music, how to hear the right note, and how to sound great with everyone else. Best part is - I am having fun. If you were hesitant to join the choir for these reasons, please reconsider! You are welcome and we want you to join the choir. If you are afraid, feel free to talk to me about it! ...or at least sing during Mass!
+ Televised SUNDAY MASS!
A televised Sunday Mass is now airing on ABC Family from 5:30 to 6:30am each Sunday Morning. THE SUNDAY MASS is produced by the Passionist Fathers & Brothers out of New York City.
A REFLECTION ON GRATITUDE
To be grateful is to recognize the LOVE of GOD in everything He has given us— and He has given us EVERYTHNG. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him.
If we should deal out justice only, in this world, who would escape?
No, it is better to be generous, and in the end more profitable,
for it gains gratitude for us, and love.
We greatly appreciate the generosity of parishioners and friends of St. Therese Parish.
May God bless your generosity! and THANK YOU!
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