By Joseph Yekulis
The Catholic Times
CHELSEA — After setting record temperatures in Michigan during March, many motorcyclists already have taken the wraps off their bikes to hit the road and enjoy the early spring.
For riders of faith however, there’s one thing they haven’t had yet and that’s a formal blessing from our local clergy to invoke God’s grace for a safe riding season.
That of course, is the reason the priests of the Servants of Charity have agreed to host the sixth annual Blessing of the Bikes at St. Louis Center on Sunday, April 29.
By Sandra Burch
The Catholic Weekly
FREELAND — The purpose of music in the Mass is to help the people.
That was the message David Haas and Lori True delivered Saturday, March 17, during a workshop for singers and musicians at St. Agnes Church.
SAGINAW — Bishop Joseph R. Cistone blessed the oils of chrism, catechumens and sick for all 105 parishes of the Diocese of Saginaw at a special Mass on Tuesday, April 3, at St. Mary Cathedral. The Mass is part of the Holy Week tradition throughout the world. The oils blessed at the Mass will be used throughout the coming year.
MERRILL, Wis. — The Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross have a new leadership team that will take office on Sunday, June 17.
The team, identified through a congregational discernment process and confirmed in elections on Sunday, April 1, includes Sr. Pat Cormack as provincial and Srs. Mary Anne Rose, John Marie Simien and Kathy Lange as councilors. (more…)
FLINT — The missionary image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a 4-by-6-inch digital replica of the miraculous image of Mary that appeared on an Indian’s cloak in Mexico on Dec. 12, 1531, and which is on display at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe near Mexico City, will visit Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, 2316 W. Coldwater Road, Thursday through Sunday, April 19-29.
The missionary image has been blessed by Msgr. Diego Monroy, rector of the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, for the mission of promoting sanctity of the family, solidarity of the Church in America, a culture of life and a civilization of love. The image has journeyed throughout America. (more…)
Livingston County Catholic Charities to honor volunteers, group
BRIGHTON — Barbara Williams, Juanita Lavender, Rosemary Cahaney, Marie Hanvey and the Livingston County Community Alliance, Livingston County’s Seeker of Justice Award recipient for the Diocese of Lansing, will be honored at Livingston County Catholic Charities (LCCC) eighth annual “Salute to the Stars” on Saturday, April 21, at St. Patrick Parish Life Center, 710 Rickett Road.
A comedy show starring the husband-and-wife team of Kerri Pomarolli and Ron McGehee (both natives of Michigan) will be the featured event of the “Hollywood Style” night, which also includes an hors d’oeuvres stations and a raffle of such items as a necklace and earring set valued at $1,300, a Kindle Fire, Detroit Princess Riverboat Cruise, several golf outings and more.
But the centerpiece of the night is the honorees. (more…)
Bishop Bernard A. Hebda
Special to The Catholic Weekly
As a result of an accident in Rome and a full cast on my leg, the last six weeks have found me largely homebound, identifying with Jimmy Stewart in Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rear Window.”
While trying to fulfill my role as Bishop as best I could from home, I nonetheless found myself repeatedly gazing out the window at the “back 40”, giving me a new familiarity with the work of our Creator here in Gaylord. As Providence would have it, I have had a front row seat as an icy and barren tableau has been transformed into a three-dimensional masterpiece teeming with life waking up after a long winter. The days are longer, the skies are brighter, and all of creation seems to be at its best.
What a blessing for me that the transition so closely paralleled our liturgical journey through Lent to Easter. The connection is no accident. As our Holy Father Pope Benedict noted last Easter, “Just as the sun’s rays in springtime cause the buds on the branches of the trees to sprout and open up, so the radiance that streams forth from Christ’s resurrection gives strength and meaning to every human hope, to every expectation, wish and plan.” In that context, our pilgrimage through Lent to Easter serves as our annual reminder of our need for the new life that Jesus alone can offer as He awakens us from the sleep of sin and death. From St. Paul to John Paul, from Ephesus to Onekama, our Easter celebrations sing forth: Awake, o sleeper, arise from the dead, and Christ will bring you light.
In our Roman Catholic tradition, those who gather for the Office of Readings on Holy Saturday morning hear the words of that ancient hymn in the context of a magnificent 4th century Easter homily describing the joyful reunion between Adam and his Savior: that long-awaited moment when the Risen Christ, the New Adam, brings light and life to the old: I order you, o sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be held a prisoner in hell … Rise up, work of my hands, you who were created in my image… the banquet is ready … the treasure house of all good things lies open. The kingdom of heaven has been prepared for you from all eternity.
From those of us who claim to be followers of Christ, a skeptical world weighed down by recession and relativism is awaiting a response that might give credibility to that proclamation. How can the life of a believer not radiate with joy at such good news? How can we doubt the value of a human life, no matter how defenseless, when we’re reminded of all that Christ, seeing our potential, did to restore life and to save it from the clutches of sin and death? How can we not wipe the sand out of our sleepy eyes and allow the light of Christ to lead us to lives of deeper love, greater generosity toward those in need and renewed forgiveness for those who have hurt us?
As a Catholic, I have always been grateful that the Church gives us a whole octave of days to celebrate the Easter victory and a whole season — the 50 days leading up to Pentecost — to consider and explore the ways in which we might allow the Easter mystery to penetrate and transform our lives. Let us use this time of lengthening days and rising temperatures to remind us of Christ’s Easter victory over death and darkness so that we might share the Light of Christ with all of our brothers and sisters, humbly but convincingly proclaiming with our very lives that Christ is risen! He is truly risen! †
GRAND RAPIDS— Hank. Leverette, fifth-grade teacher at St. Therese School in Wayland, is the latest teacher to receive the WGVU-TV Cool Teacher Award. WGVU, a public broadcasting station based at Grand Valley State University, will honor him and his class with a pizza party on Monday, April 9.
Elizabeth Stein nominated Leverette for the award because he is teaching the class life skills that aren’t always in a text book. He has classroom jobs and responsibilities for the students that pays them a salary with which they use to pay bills.
Each month WGVU judges all new entries and selects the three best letters based on the students’ evidence of learning. WGVU hosts a pizza party for the winning teachers and their classes and videotapes the celebration to promote the winning teachers and the Cool Teacher program on the airwaves of the local public broadcast station. Each winning teacher and their nominating student will receive four vouchers each from Amtrak for a trip from Grand Rapids to Chicago, Ill., on an Amtrak train. On May 2, WGVU will host a year-end awards celebration at Eberhard Center Conference Center on the downtown campus of GVSU to honor all of this year’s winning teachers.
Students from kindergarten through eighth grade can nominate their teacher by writing a letter describing why they think their teacher is cool. Included should be the student’s name, address and phone number, the teacher’s name and grade and the school name, address and phone number. Entries should be sent to: WGVU Cool Teacher, 301 Fulton St. W, Grand Rapids, MI 49504-6492. Students can also nominate their teachers and see winning teachers online at wgvu.org.†
By Katherine Doud
The Catholic Weekly
KALAMAZOO — Two years ago, local author Jane Knuth’s world was turned upside down when Loyola Press published her first book – “Thrift Store Saints” – and she found herself traveling cross-country to talk about her writing.
“My motto became ‘have car, drive far,’” Knuth said, remembering her trips to Dallas, Pittsburgh, Chicago and throughout the states of Michigan and Minnesota.
This month, Knuth’s second book, “Thrift Store Graces: Finding God’s Gifts in the Midst of the Mess” (Loyola Press, $13.95), has hit bookstore shelves and Knuth is on the road, again. Both books explore the spiritual growth she has experienced as a volunteer at the St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store in downtown Kalamazoo.
One of the stops on Knuth’s latest book tour was St. Monica Catholic School, 530 W. Kilgore Road, where she talked and signed copies of her new book. on Monday, March 26. Knuth visits the school as part of “Reading Month,” which is traditionally held in schools during March.
Knuth’s visit to St. Monica Catholic School is a homecoming, of sorts. Knuth is a graduate of two local parochial schools: the former St. Joseph Elementary School and Msgr. John Hackett Catholic Central High School. Her daughters Ellen, 26, and Martha, 24, also attended St. Monica and Hackett.
Knuth was taken by surprise when Loyola agreed to publish her first book. It gained rave reviews in newspapers across the United States, including a thumbs-up from Kathleen Falsani, a reviewer at the online newspaper The Huffington Post. Knuth also received the Bishops’ Award from Hackett Catholic Central High School last year, in recognition of her work at St. Vincent’s and the book that describes it.
“The publication of ‘Thrift Store Saints’ changed my life,” said Knuth, who wrote the book after a friend in her monthly writing group urged her to give it a try. “But it’s all been good. I feel God wants these stories to be shared.” (more…)
-Alpena, St. John the Baptist/St. Anne/St. Mary/St. Bernard: Tickets for the school raffle will be sold after all weekend Masses. The drawing will be during the “Evening of Elegance” dinner dance at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, April 14, at St. Anne Parish Center. For tickets, or more information, call (989) 354-4911.
-Bellaire, St. Luke the Evangelist: Zumba Gold exercise classes are offered at 4 p.m. Tuesday and Thursdays.
Duplicate bridge is played at 12:30 p.m. Mondays.
The parish office is open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
-Cadillac, St. Ann/Lake City, St. Stephen/Manton, St. Theresa/Harrietta, St. Edward: The St. Angela Circle’s third annual spring luncheon will follow the 10:30 a.m. Mass on Sunday, April 29. Atomic Closet will lend the clothing modeled at the luncheon. To RSVP, or for more information, call Mary Ellen Williams at (231) 218-0201.
-Charlevoix, St. Mary: The 36th annual Knights of Columbus cash raffle party will be 6-11:30 p.m. Saturday, April 21, at Castle Farms Knights’ east garden pavilion. Matter of Taste will carter the dinner with music by Steve Larsen of Disco-O-Nection. The grand prize in the raffle drawing will be for $5,000. For tickets, or more information, call Steve Seely at (231) 499-3674, Ed Linse at 547-4526, Gabe Campbell at 547-9739, John Haggard at 547-4046 or Roger Nesburg at 547-5111.
-Cheboygan, St. Mary/St. Charles: The vacation Bible school will be Monday through Friday, June 18-22.
Volunteers are needed to work on the all-parish picnic, slated for Sunday, June 24. To help with the planning, call Beverly King at (231) 625-9591.
-East Tawas, Holy Family/Oscoda, Sacred Heart: The women’s retreat is the weekend of April 20-21, at Holy Family.
The Council of Catholic Women’s mother-daughter banquet is Sunday, May 6.
The Council of Catholic Women will have a bake sale after all Masses the weekend of May 26-27, June 30-July 1.
-Grayling, St. Mary: Just works experience for youth will be held Monday through Friday, July 23-27, in Traverse City at Twin Lakes Camp. Its open to all youth grades 8-12.
-Elk Rapids, Sacred Heart: Dee Blair of Traverse City will present “Secret English Garden Adventure” during the Council of Catholic Women’s spring banquet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 1.
-Frankfort, St. Ann: Volunteers are needed for the prayer chain, jail ministry, ushers and to work funeral luncheons. To sign up, or for more information, call the parish office at (231) 352-4421.
-Hale, St. Pius X: A trip to Soaring Eagle and Saganing Eagle’s Landing casinos will be offered Tuesday, April 17. Registration forms are posted on the church bulletin boards.
-Harbor Springs, Holy Childhood of Jesus/Cross Village, Holy Cross/ Larks Lake, St. Nicholas: Theology of the Body for teens will be offered from 8:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 14, at Holy Childhood.
-Higgins Lake, St Hubert/Houghton Lake, St. James: Mass is now at 9 a.m. Sunday at St. James and 11 a.m. Sunday at St. Hubert. There is no Saturday Mass.
-Indian River, Cross in the Woods: Vacation Bible school will be Tuesday through Friday, June 19-22. For more information, call Shirley Ronk at (231) 238-8973.
The rosary, prayed at 8 a.m. weekdays, is now in the church. The chapel is reserved for quiet prayer.
-Lake Leelanau, St. Mary: The preschool’s open house is 9-11:30 a.m., 1-2:30 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, April 24. To RSVP, call (231) 256-9670.
-Lewiston, St. Francis: Saturday Mass is now at 4 p.m. and Sunday Mass will be at 11 a.m.
-Maple City, St. Rita/St. Joseph: The men’s club is sponoring a spring fling dance from 8 p.m. to midnight, Saturday, April 14in the parish hall. Featuring Chicago’s Honky Band-Polka Generations.
-Catholic Community of Manistee: Organizations or groups of people are needed to host the community table on Tuesdays, April 17 and May 8 and 29. To sign up, contact the office at (231) 723-2619, ext. 11, or janowiakh@manisteecatholiccentral,org.
A study of “Becoming Healers for Jesus,” by Fr. Joseph F. Sica, will be offered at 7 p.m. Wednesdays in the Catholic Community of Manistee office prayer room, 10 a.m. Thursdays in the St. Joseph Parish Center lounge and 6:30 p.m. Thursdays in the St. Ann Room at St. Mary.
-Northport, St. Gertrude/Suttons Bay, St. Michael: Mass is at 8:30 a.m. Sundays at St. Michael.
-Onaway, St. Paul: The Knights of Columbus will serve all-you-can-eat fish dinner from 5-7 p.m. Fridays, during Lent, in the parish hall. A 50/50 drawing will be part of each meal.
-Petoskey, St. Francis Xavier: Fr. Tony Cureton will lead a day of reflection on evangelization offered from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 14, at the Augustine Retreat Center. To sign up, or for more information, call Carol Gietzen at 347-6935.
Confirmation is Sunday, April 15.
-Posen. St. Casimir/St. Dominic/ Rogers City, St. Ignatius: The Harbor Nights fund-raiser for St. Ignatius School will be Saturday, April 21.
The next blood drive is Thursday, May 3, at St. Casimir.
-Prudenville, Our Lady of the Lake: Mass is now at 4 p.m. Saturday and 8:30 a.m. Sunday.
-Roscommon, St. Michael: Mass is now at 6 p.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m. Sunday.
-St. Helen, St. Helen: Mass is at 4 p.m. Saturdays.
-Traverse City, Immaculate Conception: The youth group’s annual Granny’s Attic and Grandpa’s Garage Sale is the weekend of April 21-22. For more information, call Joanne Willis at (231) 995-0431.
Confirmation is 5 p.m. Saturday, May 5.
The next blood drive is Thursday, June 7.
-Traverse City, St. Francis of Assisi: Gift sessions, which this year will focus on “Living the Moral Life” will be Sunday, April 15.
-Traverse City, St. Joseph: Bishop Bernard A. Hebda will install new monsignors, including Msgr. Edwin Thome, at a 5 p.m. Mass on Sunday, April 15, at St. Mary Cathedral.
The Edge, for grades 6-8, will meet from 3-4:30 p.m. Sundays and Life Teen, for grades 9-12, will meet from 6:30-8 p.m. To sign up, visit www.tcyouthgroup.org.
-Traverse City, St. Patrick: Mass is 9 a.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Volunteers are needed from 9:45 a.m. to noon on the second Tuesday of each month to help in the food pantry. To sign up, or for more information, call Susanne Redburn at (231) 943-0465.†