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St. Malachi Lent Charity – St. Kizito – Brunch on Sunday March 9

This Sunday, March 9, from 10:15AM – 11:15AM, will be a potluck brunch in the School Hall.  This potluck will be the kick-off for St. Malachi’s 2014 Lenten Charity which will again be the St. Kizito Foundation.  St. Kizito supports orphaned children in Uganda, who have been touched by war, and the brunch will include a presentation by St. Kizito board members.  All are invited to come and to bring a dish.

All PSR program families are especially invited to the brunch.  PSR children will be singing for the program.

While any food will be welcome, we especially encourage Ugandan food.  Here are some recipes:

http://www.food.com/recipe/ugandan-pineapple-nut-bread-235940

http://www.food.com/recipe/ugandan-groundnut-stew-235939

http://low-cholesterol.food.com/recipe/ugandan-curried-potatoes-310292

http://www.food.com/recipe/ugandan-ginger-tea-recipe-235805

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Sim-Sim_Cookies

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Kashata

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Ugandan_Porridge

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Banana_Cr%C3%A8me

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Plantain_Cake

http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Peanuts-Nougat

http://muzunguinkampala.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/food-food-food-learn-to-eat-the-ugandan-way/

We look forward to seeing the whole family!

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Life’s Journey

Dear reader of this poem I pray, as you journey through each day,
That you will have faith and courage to find your way,
Through all life’s choices and challenges and see the guiding lights,
Of joy, peace and hope shining so bright.

Our journey of life, whether short or long is full of troubling times for sure,
Some things are sad resulting in doubt and fear.
But if we face them together and say, we will remain on guard,
Life will get better as we persevere through things that are hard.

Nature’s storms and terrorist attacks appear to be here to stay,
Accidents and medical problems are not going away.
But new birth and nature’s beauty inspire a hopeful life,
And gives us the joys and dreams that reduce our strife.

War’s suffering and death knows no end,
Lasting wounds and sorrows these events continue to send.
But a friend’s unconditional, loving presence and compassionate care,
Provide the spirit filled strength and encouragement that helps one fare.

Life is full of questions and human imperfection along the way,
No one knows what lies ahead and where clear answers lay.
But an attitude of gratitude and a hopeful, prayerful heart,
Helps us find strength as we begin the next day with a positive start.

For our Creator’s tender love binds and heals our wounds,
It eases our discouragement and inspires our dreams very soon.
This love also transforms us with its touch of compassion,
And renews our strength to handle future actions.

A “Thank You” song to our Creator for all we have today,
A responding inspiration to endure our concerns come what may.
A “Yes” song of acceptance for whatever tomorrow brings,
To be a channel of hope and peace for everyone in all things.

Original poem by St. Malachi Parishioner Robert L. Rossman

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Fr. Tony Schuerger’s Homily, Sunday March 3, 11:30AM Mass

For all those who were unable to attend, we are pleased to make available the audio file with the Sunday Homily.

The homily was preached by pastor Fr. Tony Schuerger’s homily during the 11:30AM Mass, which was the Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time.  To listen to the homily, first click here to access the MP3 audio file, then click on the play button.  (The play button is shaped like a triangle.)

Our thanks to Stan Kozak for the audio engineering support!

 

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Rediscover Sunday at St. Malachi!

On January 5 St. Malachi Parish officially launched the new Sunday Morning at St. Malachi.  Over 140 parishioners celebrated with breakfast and a sing-a-long led by two very talented young musicians.  Breakfast was served and a good time was had by all.

What’s new on Sunday Mornings at St. Malachi is the Mass schedule with Masses at 9:00AM and 11:30AM, with an enrichment/formation/socialization time in-between at 10:15 AM.   The Mass is the source and summit of our Catholic lives and we have two options.  Attend 9AM Mass and have enrichment afterward, or if you prefer, come at 10:15 for enrichment and celebrate Mass at 11:30.

The in-between schedule will feature a variety of programs and options.   This upcoming Sunday, January 19th, at the 10:15 – 11:15 in-between time, we will feature a speaker from The Metanoia Project.  The Metanoia Project provides a shelter for the homeless at St. Malachi on weekend nights during the winter.   Come and learn about this this program and how it is changing lives.

For those who prefer Saturday Vigil Mass, the 4:30PM Saturday Mass is unchanged and all are welcome.   Mass is no longer celebrated on Sunday at 12:30.

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Womens Retreat this May

Women’s Retreat in May  – Women, you are invited to a retreat Friday evening May 30 through Saturday evening May 31 2014 at Our Lady of the Pines in Freemont, OH. We are hoping to deepen our relationship with God and build women’s community through group reflection and some quiet time. Women from St. Malachi’s, St. Patrick’s, St. Wendelin’s, and St. Colman’s, as well as other friends are being invited. The cost is $95. Brochures with registrations are at the doors of the Church or you can print them from www.StMalachi.org.

To view the brochure or print the registration form click here!

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Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi

As we begin a new year, St. Malachi has chosen to do something relatively bold for a Catholic parish: change the Sunday Mass schedule without “having” to do so (for example, because of the loss of a priest on the staff or massive loss of parishioners). Significantly, too, this choice was made after long consideration and broad consultation of the whole parish.

There was one very practical reason for changing the Mass schedule, which was to enable the  PSR program to be established in its own time slot; until this change, PSR classes were held during the 9:30 Mass. A bit of history will help with understanding how this came to be. From 1975 to 2009, the St. Malachi campus hosted two (canonical) parishes: St. Malachi Parish and the Community of St. Malachi. For many years, the grade school PSR program (under the name Christian Formation) was a ministry of the Community of St. Malachi. The Community of St. Malachi celebrated Sunday Mass at 11:00 AM, so there was no conflict for the Community of St. Malachi to operate its Christian Formation program on Sunday morning before its community Mass. Since the largest group of families with school-aged children belonged to the Community of St. Malachi, this made sense: children could receive religious education and then attend Mass with their families. Grade school-aged children whose families belonged to St. Malachi Parish were invited and welcomed to attend the grade school Christian Formation program, realizing that the program was held at the same time as the St. Malachi Parish 9:30 AM Mass (and so those families would have to attend a different Sunday Mass). In November, 2009, St. Malachi Parish and the Community of St. Malachi merged to form the new (i.e. in canonical terms) St. Malachi Parish. At the time of the merger, it was decided that it would be best to keep the Mass schedule as it was and also to continue the religious education program in the same, familiar schedule. Since then, it has become more and more evident that the parish is, at the very least, sending a mixed message by holding PSR classes during Mass times. With the change in Mass schedule, PSR has its own time (10:15-11:15 AM Sunday mornings) and there is no conflict with teachers, children and families attending Mass together.

As important as this practical reason is for changing the Sunday Mass schedule, there is an even more important reason, which is, essentially, spiritual and which is captured by the name we have given to this initiative: Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi.

In 1998, Pope John Paul II wrote an Apostolic Letter called The Day of the Lord (Dies Domini), reflecting on the meaning of Sunday, the Lord’s Day, and how central it is in the life of the church. Although not short, the document itself is worth reading. [http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_letters/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_05071998_dies-domini_en.html]

In the letter, Pope John Paul notes how the custom of Sunday as the Lord’s Day, a day of Sabbath rest has been caught up by a somewhat different concept, the concept of “the weekend:”

Until quite recently, it was easier in traditionally Christian countries to keep Sunday holy because it was an almost universal practice and because, even in the organization of civil society, Sunday rest was considered a fixed part of the work schedule. … The custom of the “weekend” has become more widespread, a weekly period of respite, spent perhaps far from home and often involving participation in cultural, political or sporting activities which are usually held on free days. (#4)

The Pope notes that there is nothing wrong with “the weekend” in itself:

This social and cultural phenomenon is by no means without its positive aspects if, while respecting true values, it can contribute to people’s development and to the advancement of the life of society as a whole. All of this responds not only to the need for rest, but also to the need for celebration which is inherent in our humanity. (#4)

But he goes on to say: Unfortunately, when Sunday loses its fundamental meaning and becomes merely part of a “weekend”, it can happen that people stay locked within a horizon so limited that they can no longer see “the heavens”. Hence, though ready to celebrate, they are really incapable of doing so. (#4)

As worthwhile as “the weekend” is in itself, Pope John Paul notes that it is inadequate by itself to fully capture the meaning and value of Sunday as the Lord’s Day. He calls followers of Christ to recognize and keep Sunday holy:

The disciples of Christ, however, are asked to avoid any confusion between the celebration of Sunday, which should truly be a way of keeping the Lord’s Day holy, and the “weekend”, understood as a time of simple rest and relaxation. This will require a genuine spiritual maturity, which will enable Christians to “be what they are”, in full accordance with the gift of faith, always ready to give an account of the hope which is in them (cf. 1 Pt 3:15). In this way, they will be led to a deeper understanding of Sunday, with the result that, even in difficult situations, they will be able to live it in complete docility to the Holy Spirit. (#4)

He goes on to note something that we have become very accustomed to in the United States, in our Cleveland diocese and (without trying to judge anyone) at St. Malachi:

because of the sociological pressures already noted, and perhaps because the motivation of faith is weak, the percentage of those attending the Sunday liturgy is strikingly low. In the minds of many of the faithful, not only the sense of the centrality of the Eucharist but even the sense of the duty to give thanks to the Lord and to pray to him with others in the community of the Church, seems to be diminishing. (#5)

Whether one thinks in terms of “the weekend” or of “the Lord’s Day” has practical effects. For example, Catholics who think in terms of “the weekend” tend to try to “fit” going to Mass into the rest of the weekend schedule. Unfortunately, for many people, if going to Mass doesn’t “fit” into what else is planned for “the weekend,” going to Mass is put aside. However, Catholics who think in terms of “the Lord’s Day” will approach the weekend schedule in the opposite way: celebrating Mass is the first priority and then all the other weekend activities are “fit” into the rest of the weekend schedule.

Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi is an effort to encourage our whole parish to think in terms of “the Lord’s Day” and to renew our spirits both through the celebration of the Eucharist and coming together as a community of faith-filled people. As Pope John Paul wrote in The Day of the Lord:

Sharing in the Eucharist is the heart of Sunday, but the duty to keep Sunday holy cannot be reduced to this. In fact, the Lord’s Day is lived well if it is marked from beginning to end by grateful and active remembrance of God’s saving work. This commits each of Christ’s disciples to shape the other moments of the day — those outside the liturgical context: family life, social relationships, moments of relaxation — in such a way that the peace and joy of the Risen Lord will emerge in the ordinary events of life. For example, the relaxed gathering of parents and children can be an opportunity not only to listen to one another but also to share a few formative and more reflective moments. (#52)

Pope John Paul II’s comment about “shaping the other moments of the day” is why we have created this time between the two Sunday Masses for our people to gather “outside the liturgical context.” The hope is that we can gather in such a way that “the peace and joy of the Risen Lord will emerge” especially by the chance to “listen to one another” and also share a few formative and more reflective moments” in the various programs and opportunities that are offered each Sunday.

Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi is an invitation and, perhaps, a challenge to think about how we can use our time with a focus on Sunday as “The Lord’s Day” rather than as the last day of the weekend. As Pope John Paul II entreated:

Sunday is a day which is at the very heart of the Christian life. … today I would strongly urge everyone to rediscover Sunday: Do not be afraid to give your time to Christ! Yes, let us open our time to Christ, that he may cast light upon it and give it direction. He is the One who knows the secret of time and the secret of eternity, and he gives us “his day” as an ever new gift of his love. The rediscovery of this day is a grace which we must implore, not only so that we may live the demands of faith to the full, but also so that we may respond concretely to the deepest human yearnings. Time given to Christ is never time lost, but is rather time gained, so that our relationships and indeed our whole life may become more profoundly human. (#7)

The invitation of Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi is to invite everyone to “open our time to Christ” a little more fully each week, remaining for a time after Mass or coming earlier before Mass, so that we may be enriched and thus enabled to enrich others from the fruits of what we have received. The opportunities for coming together, for learning, for sharing, for communion can strengthen us to be able to “live the demands of faith to the full” in the realities of daily life, enabling us to better “respond concretely to the deepest human yearnings” so that “our whole life may become more profoundly human.”

 

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All-Parish Breakfast/Songfest, 10:15AM Sunday Jan 5, 2014

St. Malachi Parish is beginning the new year — and the new Mass Schedule — with a Breakfast and Songfest from 10:15AM – 11:20AM on Sunday, January 5.

Don’t miss this first experience of the new “Sundays at St. Malachi” which features two Sunday Masses – 9AM and 11:30AM — with Parish educational programs, meetings and other activities in-between.  Coffee and refreshments will also be a regular feature of this “in-between” time.

The Vigil Mass on Saturday at 4:30 remains unchanged, and there will continue to be a Coffee Hour after 11:30 Sunday Mass.

Read the letter from Fr. Tony and Parish Council President Jeannie Cleary-Burns for more details of our Mass schedule change.

We look forward to seeing you on Sunday, January 5 at 10:15AM!

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“I’m blessed”

At lunchtime on the second and fourth Saturday of each month, St. Malachi Center hosts a men’s sharing and support group named Soup and God for the men of the neighborhood. There are usually about 12-15 people gathered around the table, sometimes more, sometimes fewer. Lunch is always a draw, as is the DVD showing on the TV before lunch is served.

 Soup and God began after a tragic event: one of the “guys” – a regular on the street for many years finally got off the street and into his own apartment. Shortly after he got into “his own place,” people did see him much anymore. Several months later, he jumped off the roof of the building where he lived. What had happened is that when he got into housing, he also lost his community – his friends on the street – and, ultimately, became isolated. The isolation proved to be too much one day and so he took his own life.

 The St. Malachi Center staff recognized the need the men had for community and peer support. Formerly homeless men needed a healthy opportunity to connect with friends and find support; homeless men needed the modeling and encouragement of men who had been able to meet the challenge of getting off the street and into a home (often for the first time in decades). Thus, Soup and God was born.

 The format is simple: lunch, going over the ground rules (“to keep it safe for everyone”), self-introductions, sharing around the table in answer to two simple questions: As I come here today, I feel …. and One good thing I did for myself this past week …. This is followed by an inspirational story or reflection, followed by discussion. Some men use their real names, others use their street names. No one is required to speak, but most do.

 As one might expect, as I come here today, I feel …. gets a variety of responses: happy, good, okay, hungry, tired, cold, down, peaceful, frustrated, hopeful, blessed.

 Blessed. Not a response most people would expect from a guy living on the streets. Not a response most expect from someone struggling with addiction (and not very successfully). Not a response expected of someone who has no job – and no prospects of getting one. Not a response of a man who spends most of his day walking from one place to another to get cleaned up, to get something to eat (hopefully more than once in a day), to get some fresh socks or underwear or a sweater, to get out of the cold for a little while (until you get told to move along), to get some medical attention, to get back to the shelter or find a place to stay for the night until it starts all over again tomorrow, with no end in sight.

 And yet, there it is: “I’m blessed.” Blessed for many reasons:

            … I woke up this morning

            … I’m here today

            … I didn’t drink or use yesterday (or today either) (at least so far)

            … I got a new coat

            … I found out I’m going to get a place in two weeks

            … I worked yesterday

            … I talked to my family (mother, son, daughter, brother, sister) the other day

            … I didn’t get in trouble with anyone – no fights, no police; I wasn’t robbed

            … I’m having a good day

The blessings named are simple, straightforward – and real. The fact that they are items that a great many people take for granted does not make them any less real, any less of a blessing.

 Scripture says, we are to be “giving thanks always and for everything.” (Ephesians 5: 20) Another saying simply says, “God is good – all the time.” Even on the worst day, I’m blessed; the challenge might be to see it.

 Why not do a simple exercise: every day, take a few minutes to list what you are grateful for today. I suspect that, even on the worst days, you should be able to find at least 5 or 6; on most days at least 10 or 12. Try it for a week. You may be surprised how easy it becomes to notice all kinds of things that, before, you might have simply taken for granted.

 As I come here today, I feel … blessed.

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Rediscovering Sunday Morning At St. Malachi

Dear fellow St. Malachi Parishioners and Friends,

After a year of prayerful work and considering many possibilities, we, your Parish Council and pastor, have come to consensus.  We are excited and hopeful about this new proposal of “Rediscovering Sunday Morning at St. Malachi.”

In keeping with our parish mission, St. Malachi has a rich tradition of serving God’s people, especially the poor.  We also need to nourish our own parishioners. “Rediscovering Sunday Mornings at St. Malachi” is an attempt to do just that.  The vision which took shape in our Parish Council deliberations went far beyond a simple change of Mass schedule to find a way to serve our people better, offering opportunities to enhance our Sunday faith experience by providing enough time between Masses for PSR, spiritual formation and faith sharing, community-building and other possible activities. We believe that this new approach to Sunday mornings can be of real value to our parish community, especially since many of us travel considerable distances to get to St. Malachi, and weekday evening events at the parish can present difficulties for families.

The initial proposal presented at the Annual Parish Meeting and by a letter sent to all parishioners indicated that 82% of respondents favored continuing to develop this plan further. We propose:

A one-year trial change to the Sunday morning Mass schedule at St. Malachi Parish with enough time between Masses for faith sharing and enrichment programs, PSR, and other parish events, to begin January 5, 2014.

The new Sunday schedule:

  • 2 Sunday Masses:  8:45am, Mass with Cantor and 11:30am, Mass with Choir
  • 1 Coffee Hour, running continuously after the 8:45am Mass to 11:15am
  • Parish programs and PSR  from10:15am – 11:15am
  • Saturday 4:30pm Mass will not change.

Enclosed is a sample plan for Sunday morning programs and activities, a Question and Answer page on the why of the details of the changes, and a response sheet. This proposed trial year represents a work in progress. We will depend on your input and suggestions at the 2014 Annual Meeting, and again at the end of the trial year.

Please complete the response form.  We will not go forward without broad parishioner support. We see this plan as an opportunity to try a new and exciting possibility for our parish. We await your feedback.

May God bless us all!

On behalf of your Parish Pastoral Council,

 

Rev. Anthony J. Schuerger                                                                 Jeannie Cleary-Burns

Pastor                                                                                                  Council Chairperson

Click here to view the  Proposal Q and A

Click here to view the proposed Sunday Activities

Click here to view the Response Form

 

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Samaritan Ministry: Addiction Awareness Workshop

The Samaritan Ministry of St. Malachi Parish will offer a FREE one-day workshop on ADDICTION AWARENESS in St. Malachi Center (behind the church), West 25th & Detroit, on Saturday, November 23, 2013, from 9 AM to 4 PM.  PB&J sandwiches, snacks and beverages will be provided.  Donations welcome.

Relevant topics will include: addiction/alcoholism as a brain disease; effects of drinking/using on others; treatment options; 12-Step programs of recovery; prevention; resources in the community

For information/to register: Judy Stowe (440/250-9959) judystowe@gmail.com or St. Malachi Rectory (216/861-5343).

Click here to view the brochure.

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