I would like to give you an update on the priests that serve us here at Our Lady of Refuge Parish. Fr. Richard Rakoczy has decided to cut back on his ministry at the parish. He will no longer be saying weekend Masses here but will continue to help with weekday Masses (usually on Thursdays) and assist us with the Sacrament of Reconciliation. He has served our parish very faithfully since becoming a Senior Priest and he will continue to do so. We are all very grateful.
Fr. Leonard Obloy will continue in the same capacity offering weekend Masses, helping with the Sacrament of Reconciliation and also sharing his scriptural expertise on Saturday mornings with the Men’s and Women’s Fellowship. May God give him strength and health as he shares his priesthood with us in addition to his responsibilities on the faculty of Ss. Cyril and Methodius Seminary.
Fr. Ben O’Loughlin is making an additional commitment to our parish. He has been doing ministry in our school and celebrating the Wednesday morning school Mass. He has also been celebrating the Young at Heart Mass which we provide at 5pm on the first Sunday of each month. He will now help us by saying some additional Masses on weekends. We are thankful for his ministry and the youthfulness that he brings. We are happy he is here.
Not only are these three priests a blessing to our parish but they personally help me in pastoring the parish. I depend on them when I am fulfilling some Archdiocesan duties or taking a vacation break. I thank them.
We are blessed with the joy and grace of the Christmas season. That spirit continues with to- day’s solemn feast of the Epiphany as the child Jesus is manifested to the whole world as our Savior and Lord. This is shown in the meaning of the Three Kings coming from far away to be with the newborn King. Our Christmas season concludes with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord on Monday, January 9.
I am well aware that many parishioners put forth a lot of time and energy to allow for these beautiful days of the Christmas Season to happen. Many people in the parish have a true sense of ministry as they share their talents and volunteer their time through their involvement in the Stewardship Commission, the Christian Service Commission, the Worship Commission, the Education Commission, and the Religious Education pro- gram. All of these groups were very busy during the Advent and Christmas seasons. We as a parish have benefited from their efforts and we are grateful.
I also express thanks to all of you for making my Christmas so joyful. It is indeed a time to proclaim our faith, to be inspired and encouraged as we all grow further in our faith. I appreciate all who sent Christmas cards, gifts and baked goods to the rectory. I enjoyed them all. Thanks.
The Christmas season is upon us. What a joy as we celebrate our faith! We are truly blessed as God comes to us. May we always know his presence with us and be able to share the goodness of God that is within us. May we show this in all of our relationships as we exercise patience, understanding, compassion and forgiveness in a special way during this holy season.
I thank you for being a part of our faith community here at Our Lady of Refuge. enjoy being your pastor and appreciate the support you give in many ways so that our parish fulfills its mission. This has been a very good year. It is hard to measure growth in faith. However, this is our most important purpose. pray that all that we do at the parish is a source of inspiration for our faith life.
We thank God for the blessings we have received. As we celebrate Christmas may we be very aware of all the blessings He sends our way, and may the New Year bring us many more blessings and graces to our parish and to our families. Merry Christmas!
I am very happy to announce that our parish has 12 new altar servers who have completed their training and are very eager to assist the parish in the celebration of the Mass. They are:
- Kristiana Abedini
- Jessica Finney
- Molly Karmo
- Ava Bachulis
- Ava Barbat
- Matthew Fountain
- Andrianna Donagrandi
- Grace Riney
- Dolan (Paddy) McIsaac
- Vinny Paliga
- Donna Pongratz
- Colin Campbell
We congratulate these children on becoming altar servers and are grateful for their willingness to serve. We are always pleased to see the activity and involvement of the young people in our parish.