RESPONSORIAL PSALM: I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.
TODAY’S MASS INTENTION: Members of Horvath Family, by Elizabeth Alicky
MASS SCHEDULE & INTENTIONS FOR THE COMING WEEK:
|July||3||Saturday||No Traditional Latin Mass|
|July||4||Sunday||9:15 AM||Barnabás & Aranka Zsurzsa, Sándor Salamon, by Ottó Zsurzsa & Family|
FROM THE DESK OF FR. BONA: I do not know if you have heard of the “Martyrs of Abitene.” These Christians suffered martyrdom in 304, in Abitene, a city of the Roman province called “Africa Proconsularis,” today’s Tunisia. They were victims of Emperor Diocletian’s persecution, initiated after years of relative calm. Disobeying the emperor’s unjust orders, a group of 49 Christians of Abitene gathered weekly in one of their homes to celebrate Sunday Mass. Taken by surprise during one of the meetings, they were arrested and taken to Carthage to Proconsul Anulinus to be interrogated. When the Proconsul asked Emeritus, why he received Christians for the celebration of Sunday in his home, he answered: “Sine dominico non possumus” (“We cannot [live] without Sunday”).
The early Christians have so much to teach us. They knew that they might have to suffer martyrdom, and yet they did not give up on their faith, and on their most prized possession, the celebration of the Eucharist. Why do we gather on Sundays (and holy days of obligation)? For two reasons. First reason may be called a vertical point of view. We were created for God and it is woven into our being. We find the meaning of our existence in the worship of God who alone can make us happy. Thus, we come to Mass first to worship our Lord. We owe it to Him and he desires that we do that at least once a week. As we regularly worship the Lord, our hearts are transformed, we become more sensitive to the ways of the Lord, we receive His grace, and it will become increasingly more difficult for us to leave our faith behind, because we will be incapable of imaging ever leaving behind the center of our lives, our Lord Jesus Christ. Second reason is the horizontal aspect, coming together as a community to strengthen one another in our vocations, and in our faith. While the main encouragement and strength always comes from the Lord, He wishes that we strengthen one another as well – that is why He sent out his disciples two-by-two (cf. Mk 6:7). We cannot truly say the phrase “Our Father,” if we do not acknowledge, help, and live for our brothers and sisters.
The dispensation from Sunday obligation ended on June 6. It had been in place for more than a year and it might have created new habits for people which can make it difficult for them to once again make the personal participation in Sunday Mass a regular part of their lives. Still, let us do it. May our planners revolve around the Sunday Mass (even on vacations). There always have been reasons why one would not be obligated to attend Mass (for example, being sick, no means to access the church, extreme weather, or perhaps someone with major health risk factors and significant anxiety and fear of contracting Covid-19). Important to note that the Church in the US is not aware of any issues of community spread happening at a public Mass. The exceptions do not apply to most of us. Yes, the Sunday obligation binds under the pain of mortal sin. However, that was not the motivation of the Martyrs of Abitene, and should not be ours either. We should be convinced, as the martyrs were, that without Sunday Mass we simply cannot live.
CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS: On July 25, we will have The St. Elizabeth Friends & Alumni Dinner. All are invited. The Mass that Sunday will be at 11AM followed by dinner. More details will follow. For the serving of the meal we will be in need of some servers who would be willing take food to and from tables. Please, let me know if you are able to help. It is greatly appreciated. Also, if others would like to help in other capacity, please let me know as well. This will be our first social event open to the wider community after the health restrictions have been lifted. I am looking forward to it.
LAST WEEKEND’S COLLECTION (6/20): Sunday offering: $721; Special donation: $28. THANK YOU FOR YOUR GENEROSITY in supporting the parish. Thank you for sending in your offertory donation through the mail. I know the times may be difficult for many people. If you are able at this time to send in your offertory donations, please do so by mail or use the PayPal option found on the website: https://www.stelizabethcleveland.org/donations/
PLEASE PRAY FOR THE SICK, especially, Jay Kovács, Kathy Szabó, Kamilla Szabó and Anna Melega, Dorothy Fromhercz, Alex Szaday.
PLEASE PRAY FOR THE DECEASED, especially for our longtime parishioner Margaret Turner (93), who died on June 9, 2021 in Sarasota, FL.
This post is also available in: Hungarian