Notes from Fr. Craig on the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time- August 5, 2012
I would like to welcome those visiting St. Mary of the Lake this weekend and throughout the summer here in New Buffalo and the surrounding Harbor Country area. We have had record attendance each weekend since the beginning of July. It was indeed a privilege having the Vice President of the United Sates of America, Joe Biden, worshipping with us last weekend at our Saturday Vigil Mass. As you can imagine, we were under a very high security alert. I personally knew a few hours a head of time, but was asked not to make Vice President Biden’s presence public because of security reasons. Praise be Jesus Christ that so many visiting our wonderful area this summer season are keeping the Sabbath Day holy by attending Holy Mass. This is always a reminder and a great witness to all of us that we too need to keep our Mass obligation when traveling, on vacation, or at home.
Today I welcome our guest priest, Fr. Christopher Derda, from the Vocations Office of the Diocese of Kalamazoo. Our Vocations Office is trying to visit as many parishes as possible this year in an effort to foster and promote Holy Vocations to the Sacred Priesthood, Diaconate, Consecrated and Religious life. Our Knights of Columbus and Altar and Rosary Society will be sponsoring the Coffee and Donut fellowship following the 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. Masses this weekend. Fr. Derda will be available to greet and answer any questions you may have about vocations.
My dear friend and former pastor who brought me into the Church on Pentecost Sunday of 2001, Fr. John Sullivan, will be filling in for me August 8-15. I will be taking a week of vacation up north at my cottage. Fr. John is now retired; however, he remains active in his priestly duties in the Archdiocese of Detroit. He is currently living in-residence at St. Francis Cabrini in Allen Park, MI. Fr. John helps out by filling in for priests who need time off or who are sick in the downriver Detroit area. Fr. John most recently served at Our Lady of Good Counsel in Plymouth, MI for many years before his retirement in 2007. Our Lady of Good Counsel is one of the biggest suburban parishes (over 3300 families) in the Archdiocese of Detroit. Another friend of mine, Fr. John Ricardo, is the current pastor of Our Lady of Good Counsel. Fr. Ricardo brought my mom into the Church in October of 2007 and has also been a spiritual advisor to me on a number of occasions since my priestly ordination.
Today we continue with St. John’s Gospel account of the Discourse on the Bread of Life. As many of us are renewed and refreshed by taking time off from work to spend time with our families and friends on vacation, so too, I pray we are renewed spiritually every time we receive the Most Holy Eucharist. Jesus is the true source of spiritual nourishment that will satisfy the deepest hunger of our hearts.
In His love,
Father Craig Lusk