Browsing From the desk of Fr. Tharp

August 22, 2021 - 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

Next Sunday:  Twenty Second Sunday in Ordinary Time   Celebrant :  Fr. Williams


First Days of School


The first day of school at St. Ann is August 25th.   The first day of school at Sacred Heart is August 30th.  Please be especially cautious driving as the young people who are our future make their way back to school.  There is great excitement with the first days of a new school year.  Please drive carefully so that the excitement can be safely enjoyed.


Fr. Tharp’s Pager is no longer in use!


The pager company I have used for years is now ceasing operation.  Therefore, please do not leave voice or numeric messages using my old pager number.  It won’t get to me.  Leave all emergency messages on my emergency voicemail, (option #2 in the afterhours menu) and the system will alert me with a message on my cell phone.   You can leave an emergency message for me by calling (513) 858-4210 and select option number two; “Fr. Tharp for an emergency.”   The system will alert me to the fact that you have left an emergency message and I will call you back within five minutes unless I am having Mass.


Delete or throw away the old pager number.  It won’t work anymore.


New Sunday Celebrant


Fr. Ronald Williams has agreed to assist St. Ann and Sacred Heart by celebrating  Sunday morning Masses as Fr. Schmitz had been doing until recently.  On the Sundays I celebrate at St. Ann, Fr. Williams will celebrate the three Masses at Sacred Heart.  When I am at Sacred Heart for Sunday Masses, Fr. Williams will celebrate the two Sunday Masses at St. Ann.  I am very grateful to Fr. Williams for his willingness to help us out so that we can maintain our current precept Mass schedule.  


Beacons of Light


The Beacons of Light program continues to move forward.  Please reference the Beacons of Light web page for the most up-to-date information at:    The process of determining which parishes are likely to join together as “Families” is currently being studied.  This consultative process is moving forward so that a draft of the probable pairings can be announced for discussion with the general population of the Archdiocese by the end of September or early October. 


 The following is a message from the Archdiocese:


BEACONS UPDATE: BE HEARD, STAY INFORMED, SIGN UP - To stay on top of the latest developments on Beacons of Light, the archdiocese-wide pastoral planning process currently underway, sign up for the free monthly Beacons Update newsletter at  


Attention parish or school volunteers who work with or around children


The Archdiocese of Cincinnati has moved from using the “Virtus” Child Protection program to the “Safe Parish” program.   If you have done the Virtus training and have kept up to date on all your monthly bulletins, you should have received an email instruction as to how to reapply under the new program. If you are up to date on all bulletins, your eligibility should automatically transfer.   IF YOU DID NOT RECEIVE AN EMAIL MESSAGE, chances are that you were not up to date in your Virtus training and your eligibility to work with children did NOT transfer.  If this is the case, please contact your local parish Safe Environment Coordinator as to what is necessary for you to be eligible to work with or around children in any Archdiocesan location. 


The following is the message or instruction you should have received:

Hello and welcome to the new Archdiocese of Cincinnati Child Protection platform — SafeParish™. As an active child protection account holder, you must register for your SafeParish™ account to continue to work and volunteer in the Archdiocese. If you have completed your background and training requirements, that information will be imported to your SafeParish™ account and no additional background or training will be required.  To be certain your information transferred and you are registered with SafeParish, please contact your parish Safe Environment Coordinator.

If you are a new employee or volunteer, please register for your SafeParish™ account and complete your background and training requirements. Check with your local parish Safe Environment Coordinator for Registration instructions.

Live Streaming a precept Mass from St. Ann and Sacred Heart each week

Even though the dispensation for the precept of Sunday Mass attendance has now been revoked, live streaming will continue for the sick, shut-ins, and others unable to come to Mass.  Please remember to access the Sacred Heart / St. Ann Pastoral Region You Tube site by clicking on the following link:

Reflection on Scripture:


Today’s scriptures ask the question, “How can you be spiritual and practical?”  The two seem like contradictory extremes that evade any comparison.  From my perspective, the Sacred Scripture says there can only be one answer: “Faith is a gift.”   The first time I heard this, I laughed; as I perceived it as another way of saying, “I don’t have a clue!”   But now with more than seventy years of experience breathing air on the earth, I am convinced that faith is a gift.  The key is: “Do you accept the gift?” 


Now you might say “Wait a minute! Faith is a choice.”  But in reality, without the disposition to believe, faith is illusive at best and impossible at worst.  So what is the gift?  And how do I possess it?  At some point, you have a supernatural longing to be in contact with your creator.  This longing becomes a life-quest.  The more that is revealed, the greater the hunger.  The quest of science is the practice of coming to understand the natural.  The quest of faith is to experience the supernatural.  As Christians, the revelation of the supernatural into the practical is revelation in Jesus Christ. 


So how can you live in the practical and long for the spiritual?  Recognize that they are both a glimpse into the infinite God who created us.  If you want to be eternally practical; be spiritual.  If you want to be eternally spiritual, practice your faith.


Next Week:  Twenty Second Sunday in Ordinary Time


Dt 4:1-2, 6-8

Jas 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27

Mk 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23


Theme:  God’s law is a tool; an insight.  Don’t worship the tool.   Worship its source. 




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