Browsing From the desk of Fr. Tharp

August 27, 2023 - 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

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

November Ballot Issue enshrining Abortion as a Right


In a letter dated August 12, 2023, Archbishop Schnurr cites the following reasons this amendment to the Ohio Constitution on the November Ballot must be defeated:


  • Put women at risk. This amendment would enable elimination of some of the most basic, fundamental safety regulations on abortion clinics, including the current requirement for an abortion to be performed by a licensed physician.
  • Threaten parental rights. The vague language in the amendment opens the door to anyone under 18 having an abortion, or even beginning cross-sex hormone treatment, without parental consent or notification.
  • Allow abortion through 9 months of pregnancy. The amendment provides caveats such that a healthy, fully-formed infant in the womb who otherwise could be delivered with no issues would still be a candidate for a surgical dismemberment abortion.


For the Catholic Church and indeed all “life centered” religions who believe that God created all life, this is not a political issue.  This is a moral issue.  We see absolute law in the Decalogue.   (Thou shalt not!)   Even for those who would cite some good thing that resulted from abortion, the end does not justify the means.  The Archbishop is encouraging priests, Catholic laity, and all people of good conscience to get involved in attempting to send this “pro-death legislative initiative” down to defeat in November.  


RCIA begins Wednesday, September 20


RCIA classes begin Wednesday, September 20, 2023 in the Church undercroft.  (RH 2&3)   Printed schedules are available at the Church doors, on our website, and promptly sent to any emailed request. 


Beacons of Light:  Choice of Family Name


The top two vote-getters were “Immaculate Heart of Mary” at 274 and the “Family of Christ Our Light” at 269.  A close third was the “Family of the Divine Jesus” at 237.  Since cumulative vote getters two and three are similar Christological names, in contrast to the Marian name “Immaculate Heart of Mary,” I believe we need a runoff election to choose between the top two vote getters.  We plan to have the runoff election the first Sunday of September which is also the Labor Day weekend.  Since there will only be two names on the ballot, one of the two is sure to receive a majority.


The Sunday Mass Schedule


Precept Masses on Sunday Morning for the Parish Family of St. Ann / Sacred Heart are 8:00 a.m. at Sacred Heart, 9:30 a.m. at St. Ann, and 11:00 a.m. at Sacred Heart.  All Masses are celebrated by the pastor, Fr. Tharp.


8:00 a.m. Mass at Sacred Heart worship space

9:30 a.m. Mass at St. Ann worship space

11:00 a.m. Mass at Sacred Heart worship space


Remember:  The Saturday evening Masses (4:00 p.m. at Sacred Heart and 5:15 p.m. at St. Ann) remain unaltered and are celebrated by the pastor, Fr. Tharp.


Children’s Mass Bags


Our new Director of Evangelization and his wife who is our new Coordinator of Religious Education have put together Children’s Mass bags which you will find displayed in the Narthex at Sacred Heart and soon at St. Ann.   Each bag is filled with age appropriate materials for your child.  After the items in the bags are used to entertain your child during Mass, please place the items back in the bag and place the bag back on the display frame.  You may have noticed the steps and other items for children in place in the restrooms at Sacred Heart.  This is all part of the process to make our churches and services more “child friendly.”  


Precious Blood at Communion


We have distributors lined up for two cups at all three Sunday morning Masses; two at Sacred Heart and one at St. Ann.”  For the moment, we do not have cups lined up for the either of the Saturday evening Masses.  Again, we can only offer both species to the degree we have enough Eucharistic ministers willing to do cups at the various precept Masses.  We hope to have cups offered at the Saturday Masses very soon.




I keep running this article because there are new scams everyday


Remember I NEVER solicit funds, donations, favors, or any request of any kind over the telephone, text, email, carrier pigeon, drone, etc.   NEVER!  Do not allow yourself to be taken in by scammers.  Even if they have my recorded voice, be assured it is computer generated fake!  It is not me!!!  


Reminder for volunteers who work with or around children


Please be aware that failure to register with and complete the requirements of Safe Parish will result in your inability to continue to work with or around children in any parish and/or school setting.  We have been informed by the Archdiocese that there can be NO EXCEPTIONS.


Live Streaming for Precept Masses


As the new reduced Sunday Mass schedule is in place, it has been recommended that I continue to live stream the 4:00 p.m. at Sacred Heart, and consider not live streaming the 5:15 p.m. Mass from St. Ann but instead live stream the Sunday Mass at 9:30 from St. Ann.  We will experiment with this for a time and see which arrangement is more favored.


Good News!   We have installed a new (temporary) microprocessor in the audio system at Sacred Heart.  We are praying that this will eliminate the loss of sound during the live streaming of Mass.  At present, we have been told that the wait time for all the electronic components we need for a new system is running about one year from the time ordered to the time when we may actually receive the component.


Please remember to access the Sacred Heart / St. Ann Pastoral Region You Tube site by clicking on the following link:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVLLqbEY5hKWinwz069MVcg


Reflection on Scripture:


In the first reading from Isaiah, Shebna, a court official, tried to convince Hezekiah the King to make a deal with Egypt.  In Isaiah’s mind this was making a deal with the devil.  So he proclaims that Shebna will be removed when the people see the real intent behind his nefarious activities.  In other words, “Don’t rely on political alliances for strength.  Rather, rely on God.” 


In the Gospel, Jesus asks the disciples who the authorities and the people perceive him to be?  Peter proclaims Jesus to be the Son of God.  Jesus says that this revelation comes not from human knowledge but is revealed by God. 


In Romans, Paul says that only God knows the mind of God.  Not the greatest prophet!  Not the preeminent lawyer!  Not the most celebrated theologian!  Only the Son of God really knows the mind of God. 


In the time of the Kings of Israel, there was always a plan that a political alliance would save the people.  Isaiah says salvation comes only from God.  Jesus tells his disciples that only the Son of God can save the world.  Paul reminds us that only Jesus Christ is the Savior sent from the Father.  Jesus and only Jesus “saves!”


NEXT WEEK   The Twenty Second Sunday in Ordinary Time


Jer 20:7-9

Rom 12:1-2

Mt 16:21-27


Theme:  “Get behind me, Satan!”




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