It is the Second Sunday of Advent.
The First Reading, taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah, is a prediction of the first coming of Jesus, the Messiah. Isaiah prophesies that the Spirit of God with His seven fold gifts — wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord — will appear in the promised Messiah.
In the Second Reading, St. Paul, in his Letter to the Romans, calls for reconciliation among the different factions in that community. Paul reminds his Roman readers that those who wait together for the many comings of our God should ignore their differences and sustain one another in mutual support and acceptance.
In the Gospel, Matthew describes the work and preaching of John the Baptist. John the Baptist appears in the tradition of the great prophets of Israel, preaching repentance and reform to the people of Israel. His preaching of the coming of the Lord is a key theme of the Advent season. As John’s message prepared the way for Jesus in the first century, we, too, are called to prepare ourselves for Jesus’ coming.
Today is also the solemnity of Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary
In 1854, Pius IX solemnly proclaimed: “The most Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first instant of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege granted by almighty God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the savior of the human race, was preserved free from all stain of original sin.” The Holy Spirit led the Church to the insight that Mary had to be the most perfect work of God next to the Incarnation. Mary was full of grace and free of sin from the first moment of her existence.
Monday, December 9 is the feast of San Juan Diego
On December 9, 1531, the Blessed Mother appeared to Juan Diego and asked him to go to the bishop that a shrine be built on her name at Tepeyac Hill by the outskirts of Mexico City. The bishop did not believe him and requested for a sign that the apparition was true. Juan returned to the hill and our Lady told him to pick up the flowers in bloom. Though it was winter, he found roses flowering. He gathered the flowers and placed them on his tilma. But when he opened the mantle to the bishop, instead of roses, it was the image of the Blessed Mother. As our Lady’s messenger, Juan Diego received interior grace of enlightenment and lived a life dedicated to prayer, practice of virtue, boundless love of God and neighbor.
Thursday, December 12 is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe
It was on December 12, 1531 when our Lady’s image was seen by the bishop on Juan Diego’s mantle that immediately began the construction of her shrine in Villa Guadalupe, a northern neighborhood of Mexico City. Hundreds of thousands come every year to the Basilica of Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe. Pope Pius X proclaimed her patroness of Latin America and Pope Pius XI approved her patronage over the Philippines. Our Lady of Guadalupe remains a powerful symbol of Mexican identity and faith. Her image is associated with everything from motherhood to feminism to social justice.
Friday, December 13 is the feast of St. Lucy
Saint Lucy is a 3rd century martyr who brought food and aid to Christians hiding in the catacombs using a candle-lit wreath. Her feast coincided with the Winter Solstice and shortest day of the year that has become a Christian Festival of Lights. Falling within the Advent season, it signals the arrival of Christmastide, with Christ as Light of the World. In Norway, Sweden and Finland, songs are sung and girls dressed as Saint Lucy distribute cookies in procession, symbolizes bringing the light of Christianity throughout the world of darkness.
Gala Evening With Mary (3:30 PM, Sunday, December 8, 2019)
The Gala Evening With Mary is an annual gathering of all parishioners to meet and celebrate our family of God. We will pray together and thank Mary on the feast of her Immaculate Conception for her maternal care and constant intercessions. During dinner we will engage in casual conversations and get to know the members of our community. Peter Speziale, principal harpist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra will play selections from the Magic Flute and Swan Lake to begin a joyous season. Bring your family as the choir leads us to the singing of popular carols and we will dance the rest of the evening. This will be on Sunday, December 8th at 3:30 in the afternoon. You can pick up your reservations cards from the tables and submit them on or before November 29.
Called to RenewCampaign (Parish Goal: $215,000)
It’s just amazing how God’s abundant graces fall from our small church. A parishioner sent a $10,000 check for her full contribution and did not want to make it over five years. Fourteen parishioners made a total commitment of $34,900 this week and this brings a total of 96 making pledges. It is awesome how each and every one has come forward to our Called To Renew campaign. This will give us the assurance that we can go ahead with the plan to restore and renovate the different parish physical structures within the next 5-12 years. We shall be able to continue to share our Catholic faith and place of worship to the next generation. Let us move forward to reach the assessed $560,000 for upgrade and repairs. Thank you for your generosity and be assured as in the gospel of St. Luke, you will receive on your lap, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over.
Pray for our parish and spiritual community
Let us continue offering special prayers for unity, understanding and cooperation in our parish community. God brought us all together here at St. Casimir’s in His great love and mercy to be one universal Church. Let us pray for our pastor that he may always have the graces and wisdom to lead us to Christ.
Pope Francis Message on His Apostolic Journey to the Baltic Seas
During his apostolic visit last September, Pope Francis acknowledged the experiences of Lithuanians that still bear the scars of the occupation period, anguish of those who were deported, uncertainty about those who never returned, and shame for those who were informers and traitors. He called for healing the memories of the past and take active part in the tasks of the present. He reminded everyone what it means to be a Church on the move, unafraid to go out and get involved, to go forth to the weak, neglected, those dwelling at the margins of life. To go forth also means to halt at times, to set aside worries and cares, to notice, to listen and to accompany those left on the roadside.
Welcome to our new website
We hope you find everything you need on our new website, built by the Parish Connect team of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Feel free to browse around and send us any feedback.