News from San Antonio Church – August 27, 2023

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Weekly Bulletin August 27, 2023

by Terrie Evans

On this 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time we thank all those parishioners from Holy Family and San Antonio who came together for our annual church picnic on August the 13th.  We appreciate all those who organized the afternoon, especially Dave Sabatelli who was in charge of the event. 

On Monday August 28th we celebrate the feast of Augustine of Hippo, (354-430), born in Algeria to parents Monica (St. Monica) and Patricius and two siblings who were fluent in Latin.  He who went on to form a monastic community in Africa before becoming the Bishop of Hippo in 396 and is viewed as one of the most important Church Fathers during the Patristic Period of the Latin Church.  He is the Patron of the Augustinians and is recognized and celebrated in the Catholic, Eastern orthodox, Lutheran, and Anglican Communion Churches.  During his life, Augustine dominated the Christian world by writing against heretics, publishing sermons and composed two great works that went on to inspire Christians ever since.  He was considered one of the most prolific Latin authors whose works consist of more than one hundred separate titles.   The first of his works is an autobiography, Confession to an interesting read full of self-knowledge and amazing honesty.  The second was The City of God which took thirteen years to write the total philosophy of history showing the fundamental contrast between Christianity and the world.  Augustine imagined the Church as a spiritual City of God, distinct from the Earthly City.  Protestants, especially Calvinists and Lutherans consider Augustine one of the theological Father of the Protestant Reformation for his writings on salvation and divine grace.  Martin Luther, who was a member of the Order of Augustinian Eremites from 1505-1521 held him in preeminence among the early Church fathers.  He was Canonized in 1298 by Pope Boniface VIII and is considered the patron saint of printers, theologians, brewers and is invoked for sore eyes.    Words of wisdom from St. Augustine “Pray as though everything depends on God.  Work as though everything depends on you.”

On Tuesday August 29th, we honor The Passion of Saint John the Baptist, born in the hill country about five miles west of Jerusalem.  John’s mission was to precede Jesus “in the spirit and power of Elijah to turn the hearts of fathers toward children and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to prepare people fit for the Lord”.  During the years between 27-29, John would receive inspiration from God while in the Judean desert and then started to gather the disciples who he would teach and ask to repent and then Baptize with water.  John called on Tax Collectors, Soldiers, Religious Leaders, Townspeople and Herod to repent with many responding to his plea.  The feast of St. John is one of the oldest within the Catholic Church for the Memorial of the Beheading of Saint John the Baptist.  John the Baptist made the commitment to selflessly give himself to the mission he received.  Two of the Gospels narrate the story of John’s death:  Matthew 14:1-12 and Mark: 6:14-29.   “Saint John the Baptist, you were given a holy mission and sanctified in the womb of your mother in preparation for that mission.  You never deviated from your calling and always pointed the way to Christ, the savior of all.  Please pray for me, that I will have the same courage you had and the resolve to fulfill my duties, no matter the cost.  Saint John the Baptist, pray for me. Jesus, I trust in You.  

On Friday September 1st we celebrate the World day of Prayer for the care of Creation that begins the Ecumenical Season of creation that commences on October 4th, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi. The Synod (an assembly of Bishops chosen throughout the world with the task of meeting for deliberation when requested by the Pope who is president of the synod) on Synodality will open its first session in October with the Pope inviting all People of God to an immersive journey of dialogue and hopefully conversion.  Pope Francis established the first World day of Prayer for the Care of Creation in 2015 to encourage the faithful around the world to pray for our home that God created for all of us.  “With the help of God’s grace, Pope Francis says, “Let us adopt lifestyles marked by less waste and unnecessary consumption, especially where the processes of production are toxic and unsustainable.” The theme for this celebration on September 1, 2023 “Let Justice and Peace Flow”, that helps Catholics to fully live the Season of Creation together with Christians of other denominations.  The theme was inspired by the Prophet Amos who said, “Let justice flow on like a river, righteousness like a never-falling stream”.  In his appeal the Pope states “Like a river basin with its many tiny and large tributaries, the Church is a communion of countless local Churches, religious communities and associations that draw from the same shared waters.  Each source adds its unique and irreplaceable contribution, until all flow together into the vast ocean of God’s loving Mercy.”   In his closing statement, he said “let us be mindful as we can about our habits and economic decisions so that all can thrive-our fellow men and women wherever they may be, and future generations as well.”

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