Bulletins (Please scroll to the bottom of the page for this week's and past weeks' bulletins.)

Holy Week is certainly the most intense time of the Church year. During this week, it sometimes seems like liturgical time takes over for a few days as we move from feast to feast. This is the week that has the most potential for recharging our spiritual batteries for what lies ahead. If we make a good Holy Week, the spiritual benefits will carry us a long way into the year.

On Holy Thursday, we recall the Last Supper that Jesus celebrated with His disciples. Even though Jesus knew He was facing the very worst the next day, He “gave thanks.” Then He said, "Do this in memory of Me." I've heard it said that if the only prayer we ever uttered was “thank you,” it would be enough.

The Eucharist has always been the great gathering point for followers of Jesus. The word “Eucharist” is from the Greek that means “thanks.” So in good times and in the most difficult times, Catholics gather at the altar to give thanks. The liturgy of Holy Thursday also includes the washing of feet for several selected members of our parish.

After the Last Supper, Jesus went with his disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane where He invited them to “watch and pray” for one hour. In memory of this time, the Church provides a time of vigil after the Holy Thursday Mass. Our chapel will be open until 10 p.m., and I hope a number of people will keep vigil with our Lord.

This year, Curt and Rochelle Lauret are inviting young people and anyone who wants to join to keep the vigil beginning right after Mass at our chapel and then moving across Sioux Falls to several other chapels. Groups from other parishes will be following the same pattern, and so we will welcome other groups to our chapel. Please consider joining this short pilgrimage.

On Good Friday, we remember the Passion and Death of Jesus in a very dramatic liturgical action. Every prayer and movement of the liturgy helps us enter into the enormity of what happened on Calvary.

I invite you to pay attention especially to the proclamation of the Passion of Jesus from St. John's Gospel. This narrative is markedly different from the one we read on Palm Sunday.

Pay attention also, to the veneration of the cross. This is always a moving ritual for me as I recognize people with various disabilities, sicknesses, and sorrows coming forward to unite their lives with the suffering and death of Jesus. It is through our union with the sufferings of Jesus that our sufferings become redemptive and lead us to the fullness of resurrection life.

At the Easter Vigil, we will listen again to the Word of God as it reviews salvation history. Again and again, God has intervened in His world to bring about redemption. Of course, the climax of God's activity is the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.

At this liturgy, we will once again renounce evil and profess our faith. This year, several men and women will become Catholic as they join in our profession of faith. They will also share in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit through the Sacrament of Confirmation.

The liturgy of the Easter Vigil is a bit complex as it tries to capture something of the mystery of the dying and rising of Christ. Even though the liturgy is kind of long, I hope many members of our parish will gather for this important event.

On Easter Sunday, we will close out our Lenten observance through the solemn profession of faith and the sprinkling of baptismal water. Once again, the joy of the resurrection explodes in the celebration of the liturgy.

Sometime during this coming week, please do return your Rice Bowls to the church. Religious Education students should bring them on Wednesday.

Our parish is discerning our needs for youth ministry. We do pray that God will send a vibrant youth minister to us. In the meantime, a number of parish members are providing some on-going programming to help our young people remain active in their faith.

Financial Report: For the first Sunday in April, we were happy to welcome many people to church, and were pleased to find $11,298 in the offertory collection, along with generous online giving. Thanks so very much.

A Stewardship Testimonial: "I find that whatever I share comes back to me multiplied."

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