Our culture seems more polarized and divided than ever. Into this wounded situation, our Catholic faith has a healing remedy to offer: the gift of wisdom. When the Lord offers to give King Solomon anything the monarch desires, he requests “an understanding heart” (1 Kings 3:9). In his polarized situation, the King doesn’t ask for power to defeat his enemies. He asks for a wise and understanding heart to judge right from wrong. This wisdom is elevated and fulfilled in Jesus who teaches us to bring forth “both the new and the old” (Matthew 13:52).READ MORE
Life, like the church, is often burdened with evil, smallness, and impurities. The Lord’s parables give us a hope-filled perspective on all three.
Evil: in Jesus’ parable about the good farmer whose enemy plants weeds at night, Jesus tells us that God is not the cause of evil but permits evil to exist with good out of his patient love. He will finally deal with it, but his love lets things stay messy for a time.READ MORE
It’s not uncommon to hear people complain that we Catholics often fail in communicating our faith. Fair enough. We can and should improve there. But it’s interesting to notice that Jesus himself was implicitly accused by his disciples of a similar failure. This week in Matthew’s gospel they are perplexed that he speaks to the crowds in ambiguous parables. The Lord’s riddles leave many people more confused than before. He responds by pointing out that his parables have an intentional dual purpose: to hide (for some) and to reveal (for others) his Gospel: “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted” (Matthew 13:11). Is Jesus being unnecessarily difficult, obscurantist, or, worse, elitist?READ MORE
You are Invited to Fr. Bob’s Installation as Pastor of St. Mary Parish on Sat, Jun 24 at the 4:00pm Mass.
On Sat, Jun 24, at the 4:00pm Mass, Fr. Bob Poitras will be installed as the Pastor of St. Mary Parish by The Most Reverend Bishop Robert Reed. A reception in Sacred Heart Hall will follow the Installation Mass. All parishioners are invited to join in the celebration of the Mass and Reception and welcome Fr. Bob, officially, as our new Pastor. God Bless Fr. Bob!
Time Flies When You’re Having Fun!
I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since I arrived at St. Mary’s. Where does time go? I guess the old saying holds true, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” It has been a joy to settle in here at St. Mary Parish. On Fri, Jun 9, I had an opportunity to return to my last parish of St. Pius V and Holy Family Parish in Lynn, to celebrate the Baccalaureate Mass and commencement ceremony for the 8th Graders at St. Pius V School. I was bragging about St. Mary’s so much I think they couldn’t wait for me to leave! But truly, it has been a great start.READ MORE
Thank You for your warm welcome!
Dear Friends, it is an honor for me to be joining the great community of faith of St. Mary’s Parish in Franklin, MA. I want to first thank each of you for your very warm welcome. Your kind expressions by email, the warm greetings at our liturgies last week and weekend and the great signs of welcome posted all around the parish property. All of these expressions of welcome have made my transition as comfortable as possible. Thank You!READ MORE
Church Ordinary Time, which begins anew after the feast of Pentecost and runs until the beginning of Advent (this year, Sunday, December 3), is a time for us to settle into learning what it means to know and follow Jesus. (Note: the first round of Ordinary Time was between the end of the Christmas Season and the beginning of Lent.) We read from the gospel of Matthew this year and hear parables, stories of miracles and Jesus’ words about what it means to be his disciple. We also celebrate a couple of wonderful feasts that help us to know more about Jesus. At bible.usccb.org, the US Bishops post all of the daily readings. You can prepare for the Sunday readings at liturgy.slu.edu, a website maintained by St. Louis University.READ MORE
Dear Parishioners and Friends of Saint Mary Parish,
This is my last weekly letter as the Pastor of Saint Mary Parish. I retire on May 31st, this coming Wednesday. Certainly I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life, but I do feel sadness at leaving this wonderful Parish and Parishioners. I will be retiring to my family home in Falmouth, MA.READ MORE
In listening to or reading this weekend’s Gospel, we hear of Jesus’ promises of the Spirit. This passage is a continuation of the lengthy Last Supper “speech” which we have been reading these past few Sundays. Scripture scholars suggest that John composed this long discourse by selecting various words of Jesus from other times. The author John did this so we would know that these words of Jesus are very important, and we should ponder the meaning of His wisdom. Note how these words all have a clearer meaning for us because we hear and read them after His Death and Resurrection; this was not the case for the apostles and disciples. His followers needed time to come to understand. It is interesting that John did not write everything down which Jesus did and said because there would not be enough books in the world to contain what could be written.READ MORE
We read and hear in this weekend’s Gospel, that Jesus promises the Spirit. John is the only gospel writer who records this very long talk at the Last Supper. Learned scripture scholars theorizes that when John assembled his Gospel, he chose to set these words of Jesus at the Last Supper. This particular position of his words accents strongly their importance and invites us to pay close attention. The words of Jesus become clearer after his death and resurrection. We also need to remember that John goes out of his way to remind us that at the end of his Gospel, he comments that if he were to write down everything Jesus did, there wouldn’t be enough books in the world to contain what could be written. We have more than enough of the Lord’s words recorded in this Gospel.READ MORE
When I back out of the driveway at the Church, I always get to see the house which was constructed only a few years ago in my view. I often think of all the time and many steps it took to build the house. There were many, many trade and craft people involved, besides the necessary plans and permits. The General Contractor had to be licensed and this “GC” had to employ many licensed sub-contractors, such as electricians and plumbers for the construction. The “GC” has to be a good leader and also knowledgeable and experienced in the construction trades. The “GC” has to start with the first steps and work on the project until it is completed and the owner has a Certificate of Occupancy.READ MORE