A Message from Father David
Dear Family of St. Mary, Mother of the Church Parish,
Now is the time to be planning our Lenten penances if we have not done so already. But, more than the particulars of what we will do, we should have a vision of the “Big Picture” into which this Lenten penance fits. A glance at the last chapter of the Bible will give us a snapshot of just that. Therein we read that Our Lord tells Saint John, “I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end” — Apoc. 22:13. Yes, we will encounter these words on Holy Saturday and during Easter Week, too, but we can apply them here and now to our Lenten journey.
How does this give us the “Big Picture”? And how does it give us a clear purpose this Lent? It does so by showing us that God is both our First Cause and our Final End; more specifically, it also shows us that the Man-God, Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Logos, is the beginning of our life of grace on earth and the end of our life of glory in Heaven. Besides being our Beginning and our End, he is also our “Middle,” or — in Biblical terms — our “way” (John 14:6), who brings us to our happy End as members of His own Mystical Body: “Because we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones” (Eph. 5:30).
He who is our beginning came into this world that we might seek Him, find Him, cleave to Him, and ultimately possess Him as our end. Our entire lives, whether considered morally, sacramentally, liturgically, or in any other way, has this as its purpose: to make us cleave to Jesus Christ so that we may be united through Him to the Holy Trinity. This also pertains, let us recall, to how we live the most mundane duties of our state in life.
Regarding this Lent, what best unites us to Jesus Christ is what we need to do. Prayer, fasting, and almsgiving are part of the Church’s penitential economy; and they are, therefore, of perennial validity for the faithful. God Himself also sends us penances by providentially allowing us to suffer; and His chosen penances for us, which we should accept with serenity, are the very best. It is a commonplace — almost a trite saying, so frequently is it repeated — that if we but “offer up” whatever we suffer, it is helpful to us and pleasing to Almighty God. For all its repetition, though, this truism is no less true. We have heard about all the penances and privations God allowed the Apostle Paul to suffer, after relating several of his more harrowing tribulations, followed by some of the supernatural gifts he received, he thus ends the passage:
And lest the greatness of the revelations should exalt me, there was given me a sting of my flesh, an angel of Satan, to buffet me. For which thing thrice I besought the Lord, that it might depart from me. And he said to me: My grace is sufficient for thee; for power is made perfect in infirmity. Gladly therefore will I glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may dwell in me. — 2 Cor. 12: 7-9
May we learn to glory in our infirmities amid life’s bitter trials!
Whether of God’s choosing or our own, if our penances help us to grow in faith, hope, charity, humility, and abandonment to the will of God, they are good. If they help us to “lean on Jesus” more and more they are good. If they strengthen us in the duties of our state, they are good. In effecting all this, they unite us to Jesus Christ and, through Him, to the Trinity who is blessed forever — Amen!
Asking God to abundantly bless you all in this holy season of Lent, may you profit greatly from this time of Penance and preparation.
Father David Chiantella, Pastor
Our priests will never send an email or text requesting money or gift cards. Our clergy email addresses end in @raldioc.org
Nuestros sacerdotes nunca enviarán un correo electrónico o mensaje de texto solicitando dinero o tarjetas de regalo.
Our parish's online giving system is WeShare. It's safe, simple, and convenient! Click on the Donate circle to set up your one-time or recurring gift from your debit card, credit card, or checking account. You're welcome to call the parish office at 919-772-5524 or contact customer support at [email protected] if you need help. Thank you for your generosity!
Mondays and Wednesdays at noon
Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays at 8 AM
Sábado a 3 PM (Español)
Saturday at 5 PM (English)
Sunday at 8 AM and 10 AM (English)
Domingo a mediodía (Español)
The diocese is livestreaming Masses on its YouTube channel. See https://dioceseofraleigh.org/news/online-spiritual-resources for a link to the Masses.
- First and third Wednesdays from 5 PM to 6:30 PM in English.
- Second and fourth Wednesdays from 6 PM to 7:30 PM in Spanish.
- Saturdays from 3:30 PM to 4:45 PM in English.
- By appointment with a priest. Please email the priest to arrange the appointment.
Las oficinas parroquiales están abiertas de lunes a jueves de 9 a.m. a 4:30 p.m. y lunes y miércoles de 6 p.m. a 8:30 p.m.
Bishop's Annual Appeal
We have kicked off our Annual Bishops Annual Appeal fundraising effort to support many important works in the diocese and in our parish. Thank you to everyone that has already completed and returned their pledge card. If you haven’t had a chance yet, it’s never been easier. You can go to http://www.GiveToBAA.org and securely complete your pledge today.
Thank you for your continued generous support of our parish and our community.
The 2021 Bishop’s Annual Appeal funds many ministries in the areas of charity, evangelization, and worship. The Bishop’s Annual Appeal will provide over $7 million in the upcoming year to help those in physical and spiritual need. Our parish's goal is $83,294. Funds raised are distributed:
- 24% to education: sacramental preparation, Catholic school support, catechist formation, youth ministry and retreats, college campus ministry, continuing education for clergy
- 22% to ministry: hospital ministry, financial help to rural parishes, safe environment training, formation of permanent deacons, special diocesan liturgies
- 22% to Catholic Charities: disaster services, family crisis support, food pantries, immigration services. Over 58,000 people were helped last year, and 3 million pounds of food were distributed
- 13% to communications: bilingual media programming, NC Catholics magazine, social media, video, the diocesan website, dioceseofraleigh.org
- 11% to marriage, family, and respect life: marriage preparation, marriage support, natural family planning, promoting a culture of life and dignity, post-abortion healing, prison ministry
- 8% to seminarians and vocations: outreach to those discerning a vocation and tuition, room & board, books, and formation support for the 20 men studying for the priesthood
Thank you for your participation in meeting this year's goal. You can donate online at www.GiveToBAA.org or pick up a pledge packet in the church.