Priority #5: Everything Else

11-26-2017Holy Catholic Marriage

The fifth priority of a holy Catholic marriage is "Everything else." Distractions take you away from your priorities of living your love for God first, your beloved spouse second, then children and last the necessity of work. These distractions are very seductive and may creep into your life as seemingly good things such as electronics, movies, TV, sports, gaming acquaintances, hobbies or people demanding large chunks of time and attention. Distraction can rule life and home and destroy peace such as an interfering relative that does not respect the boundaries of your family, volunteering that vies for first priority, a controlling boss who doesn't respect time off or a best friend or fellow workers who may or may not be married and want to play, go out for drinks after work or always looking for fun to take you away from you Catholic priorities.  

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Christ the King

11-26-2017Faith and FamilyLani Bogart

The Church is like an ancient and beautiful castle filled with treasures! The stories of our salvation in Sacred Scripture are like jewels filling a huge treasure chest; each one more beautiful than the last. Do we know and love our royal family stories? Do we teach our children to love them?

The Holy Eucharist, far better than any earthly culinary delight, satisfies the deepest hunger of our souls. How often do we bring our children and grandchildren to eat at the Royal table of the Eucharist. Have we taught them how to give thanks for such a great gift?

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A very exciting gift for you!

11-26-2017From the PastorFr. Michael Straley

Howdy,

I know it is not Christmas yet, but I have a very exciting gift for you. Our parish has signed for a program called Formed. This program allow you to go on the internet and choose many Catholic programs or movies, either adult, teen, or child oriented. Some of the best speakers and teachers in the country are offered through Formed. What is best, it is free for you, the parish is paying for everyone.

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God is a Generous Master

11-19-2017Faith and FamilyLani Bogart

Do we behave like the third servant in today's parable? When God entrusts us with the treasure of family, do we complain that he expects too much and is unfair?  

Life seldom unfolds the way we think it will. We are tempted to compare our "talents" with others, which is always a recipe for disaster. Instead let us practice trusting God with our whole hearts and loving others by words and actions.

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Priority #4: Work

11-19-2017Holy Catholic Marriage

The fourth priority of a holy Catholic marriage is work. God worked for six days and then He rested. God gave Adam the job of tending the garden, which was not a job involving toil. However, after the fall, Adam's work became toil teaching him   discipline, obedience, self-control, perseverance, order and organization. Scripture gives accounts of working saints: Joseph with carpentry, Paul with tent making, Peter, James and John with fishing and Luke with medicine. In the ancient monastic tradition, monks combined work with prayer to give glory to God. They understood the balanced combination of work and prayer controlled selfish tendencies and was essential to spiritual growth. Work, as a gift, can provide for the betterment and security of the family. However, like all gifts, it can be misused and can replace the love of God, spouse and children for the love of success, greed, prestige and position. Death bed realizations of a life misspent are painful. However, if you are working two jobs right now just to have your family survive the economic crisis, God bless you because that is self-sacrificing love and not greed.  

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Happy Thanksgiving!

11-19-2017From the PastorFr. Michael Straley

Howdy,

As I look forward to our celebration of Thanksgiving, I am aware of so many things for which we have to be thankful. Just this past year or so, we have grown and celebrated so much. In February we celebrated the 70th anniversary of our parish community. What a rich history! Bishop Olmsted was here to celebrate with us; he even stayed at the reception until most of the people   (and the food) were gone.

Of course, we were recently chosen by our diocese to host the Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima. I was amazed at the incredible devotion that was evident all night.

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Priority #2: Live our Love for our Spouse

11-12-2017Holy Catholic Marriage

The second priority of a holy Catholic marriage is to live our love for our spouse. In the Holy Sacrament of Marriage, the couple is the Sacrament. The most beautiful example of love the world has ever known was Christ laying His holy life down for His Bride, the Church. Christ gave us the example of the essence of marriage, which is self-sacrificing love. Catholic marriage is lived when both spouses willingly die to their own personal selfishness for each other by placing their spouses' needs before their own. Love is self-sacrificing and self-donating for the good of one's beloved spouse. The ultimate good is God in heaven and Catholic spouses sacramentally bound together in the divine love of Christ need to help each other grown in holy love. We are all given mission fields just like the Apostles. Our first mission field is our spouse and our children. Decide that loving and serving your spouse will   become a priority in your life.    

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The Tepeyac Leadership Initiative

11-12-2017From the PastorFr. Michael Straley

Howdy,

The Diocese of Phoenix has announced a new leadership program, Tepeyac Leadership Initiative, to help develop Catholic professionals to advance the mission of the Church and to serve the common good in our secular society. There are many professional leadership training programs, but al seem to be secular in orientation. Catholic leaders must be able to defend our Church teaching and to lead according to Gospel values and morals.

The program will begin in February, but the application process will close November 30 for this first group. Men and women are invited to apply. The sessions will be on Tuesday evenings for 5 months. The cost of the program is $600.

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Will we have lived wisely or foolishly?

11-12-2017Faith and FamilyLani Bogart

I recently attended the funeral Mass for a 17 -year-old youth who died suddenly and unexpectedly. His family grieved his death, but the celebration of his life also exemplified the truth St. Paul speaks of in today's reading. This young man of our community is not lost in death, but has "fallen asleep," so we do not grieve "like the rest, who have no hope."

It's been more than 2,000 years since Jesus ascended to Heaven, so it's easy to forget that Jesus, "with a word of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God, will come down from heaven." A new existence for those who believe in Christ will begin. On a certain day within history, either at our own death or His glorious return, it will happen. Here is the question: Will we have lived wisely or foolishly? Will we be ready, as St. Paul writes, "to always be with the Lord"? Lord Jesus, someday I and my family will see Your face. Please keep us free from sin and protect us from all anxiety as we wait in joyful hope for You.

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Priority #1: Live our Love for God

11-05-2017Holy Catholic Marriage

The first priority of a healthy, happy holy Catholic marriage is to live our love for God. "Seek first the kingdom of God and all else will be given to you" (Mt. 6:33). When a bride and groom walk into a Catholic Church to be married they come as separate, independent people in love but when walk down the aisle as husband and wife they are bound together by Christ's divine love. They are forever a threesome consisting of Christ, husband and wife, bound together in love.

At Cana, the bride and groom served their simple wine which did not last. But due to Christ's presence, the water became abundant, exquisite wine. Jesus' presence in a sacramental marriage turns the simple love of a husband and wife into abundant, exquisite and lasting love. Christ is present in your sacramental marriage always renewing, healing and offering His perfect love to you.  

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"In You, LORD, I have found my peace."

11-05-2017Faith and FamilyLani Bogart

One day, when my children were small, I sat down to the piano and began to play and sing a prayer song, "I cast all my cares upon you . . ." Before I could finish the song, my youngest son interrupted me with a request for help. I blush with shame when I remember my exasperated response. "Can't you let me have just a few minutes without asking for something?" I soon realized if I had truly been casting my cares on God, I would have treasured the opportunity to help my child instead of counting him an obstacle to "my" time with God. When we love God in our families by embracing both the quiet moments and life's interruptions, we can say with the psalmist, "In You, LORD, I have found my peace."

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It's Festival Time!

11-05-2017From the PastorFr. Michael Straley

Howdy,

Festival!! Next weekend is our parish Unity Festival. Unfortunately, I will again miss it since I will be in Mexico with Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos for their quinceañera celebration, and to see the damage done by the earthquake. You know I will miss you all...and especially the food!

Our festival is very important for our parish community. Yes, the money helps, but more important is seeing our family come together. It is always so good to see former parishioners and students.  

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