Browsing From the desk of Fr. Tharp

June 18, 2023 - 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Next Sunday:  Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time            Celebrant :  Fr. Tharp

Archbishop’s Corpus Christi Letter


The Archbishop’s letter for the Feast of Corpus Christi was available at the doors of both churches last Sunday on the Feast of Corpus Christi.  If you missed it, we have additional copies at the doors as well as on our parish websites. 


Allocation of Priest Personnel


Fr. Ron Williams has provided Sunday assistance for Sacred Heart and St. Ann for nearly two years (since July of 2021).  Since the implementation of “Families of Parishes” in July 2022, we have been aware that the Family of St. Ann / Sacred Heart would be served by only one priest for the long term future.  As our “Family” nears the end of Phase One of the Beacons of Light, our combined Parish Council has survey both congregations and determined a new revised Sunday schedule in conformity with the Archdiocesan Sunday Mass Policy operative throughout the Archdiocese.  As we move to only three Sunday Masses as of July 1, 2023, we will no longer require the services of another priest for Sunday Mass assistance. 


Fr. Ron will celebrate the three Masses on Sunday, June18 at Sacred Heart and the 9:00 a.m. and the 11:00 a.m. Mass at St. Ann on Sunday, June 25.  He will linger in the vestibule or narthex after each Mass, giving each congregation an opportunity to bid farewell and thank him for his service.


Review of Mass Schedules


The combined Parish Councils of St. Ann and Sacred Heart surveyed both congregations regarding preferred times for Sunday Masses.  Since the “Sacred Heart / St. Ann Family” cannot offer more than three Masses on any Sunday Morning if the “Family needs” are to be met using the services of only one priest; and priests of the Archdiocese are permitted no more than three Masses per day; the combined Sunday morning schedule can offer no more than three Masses.  The ad hoc Mass times committee of the combined Parish (Pastoral) Council has presented to the full combined Parish Council the following schedule for Masses as of July 1, 2023:  


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 untouched.


As pastor, I have followed the recommendation of the Beacons of Light process and left this decision entirely up to the united congregations of Sacred Heart and St. Ann.  I have had the past seventeen years at Sacred Heart, and the past eleven years at St. Ann, to celebrate Sunday Masses in the way that suites my pastoral sensitivity.  Since I am seventy two, I am constrained by universal Church (Canon) Law to retire at or before I reach seventy five.  It is my role therefore NOT to structure things the way I like them, but for the priest who will replace me.  Therefore, the three Mass rule must be followed.


On a personal note, I beg both congregations to give the new schedule a chance.  I realize that it may moderately inconvenience many and seriously inconvenience some.  Since I will celebrate all Masses every week, please give me a chance to show you that I can provide a forty five minute Mass experience that is both prayerful and focused.  I promise to do the very best I possibly can to provide concise homilies with a pertinent theme you can remember.  I have consistently given it my best shot over the past decade (or almost two) but I promise to redouble my efforts.  Please don’t give up on St. Ann / Sacred Heart, or worse yet on the Catholic Church, because of a limited schedule over which I have no control.  Please, let’s stick together through this!


The Sacrament of the Sick in Hospitals


Please remember that even Catholic Hospitals are not permitted to tell me when my parishioner enters their hospital.  If two or three people tell me about their loved on in the hospital after Mass, I will not keep it straight in my weak brain long enough to get it on paper.  Therefore, if your loved one enters the hospital (if it is not an emergency) and would like me to provide the Anointing of the Sick; please leave a clear and accurate message on my daytime voice mail at (513) 858-4260 or email me at frtharp@sacredheart-fairfield.org.  Please also remember that you cannot text me at the above number as it is a land line and does not receive texts. 


If an emergency arises during the evening or night after the secretaries leave and you need me for an emergency Anointing of the Sick, you must call (513) 858-4210, and press option number 2 to leave a paging voicemail for Fr. Tharp.  This is the only way to be sure I will receive your message when I am away from my desk until the next morning.  I suggest you use this emergency procedure only at the times when the secretaries are not available to answer the telephone. 


Keep in Touch with Sacred Heart/St. Ann via email or text


Our Director of Evangelization (Jose Martinez) has invited us to participate in a parish communication tool provided by “flocknote.com.”  To join you can scan the QR Code or text SHSA to 84576.  You can leave the program at any time by texting STOP to 84576.  I think this will prove to be a great way for the parishioners of the St. Ann/Sacred Heart Family to stay in the “know!”


Catholic Conference of Ohio


In a letter dated February 28, 2023, all the Catholic Bishops from the State of Ohio have asked faithful Catholics throughout Ohio to oppose the proposed ballot initiative for the November ballots enshrining and expanding abortion in the State of Ohio.  In addition, parents would no longer need to give consent or even be informed if their minor is seeking an abortion, redefined gender assignment, or reproductive reassignment.  Catholics of good conscience are encouraged to read the Archbishop’s letter, speak out, and stay informed.


To assist parishioners with the ability to be heard on important moral issues, the Knights of Columbus will display information on Voter Registration at the tables at which they are selling tickets for the meat raffle.  Registration to vote is both free and very convenient.  If you are not registered to vote, please stop by for easy to read information and directions. 


Ask any Question!


Mr. Jose Martinez is the new Director of Evangelization for the Parish Family of St. Ann and Sacred Heart.  I am the old pastor of St. Ann and Sacred Heart.  Two times this summer, Mr. Martinez and I will attempt to answer  “any question” you may have related to our new parish family, theology, church administration, or any aspect of life in general.  We had a well-attended first meetings on June 5 at Sacred Heart and the second meeting will be June 26 in St. Ann Church at 7:00 p.m.  Anyone who is a member or worshipper at either St. Ann or Sacred Heart is invited. 


Re-introduction of Precious Blood at Communion


We have distributors lined up for two cups at “all three Sunday morning Masses at Sacred Heart.”  This will continue with the two Sunday Morning Masses at Sacred Heart after July 1.


For the time being we only have distributors for the cup at the 11:00 a.m. Mass at St. Ann.  We hope to continue this at the 9:30 a.m. after July 1.


Again, we can only offer both species to the degree we have enough Eucharistic ministers willing to do cups at the various precept Masses. 




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


I apologize for those times when there has been no sound for the live-stream Mass at Sacred Heart.  Our technician has ordered the components we need but the lack of availability of electronic components has been a problem.  Until we can secure the new components, I will try to check the sound after I initialize the live streaming and do so before Mass while I still have time to reset. 


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:


“You shall be to me a kingdom of priests, a holy nation.”   These are God’s words of promise to Israel after the Exodus.  “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.”   With these words, Jesus commissions his disciples to preach the Word.   The Church commissions each of us by Baptism and Confirmation to proclaim the Holiness of God and to exemplify the Holiness of God.  But how can we go out and show the world that God lives in us? 


In grade school at little Reily School, I learned to play the trumpet.  I would listen to Louis Armstrong and imagine that one day I could be like him.  A couple of years later, Herb Alpert came to Cincinnati, and I spent what I believed at the time to be a small fortune to see and hear him play.  I longed for the skill to let that trumpet talk for me.  I had talent with mathematics, but it just did not translate into musical talent.  I just was not destined to be a Herb Alpert or Louis Armstrong.


At Baptism, God changes our destiny.  We are reborn in Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit pours his grace into us so we can be what we could not ever have dreamed of being; namely examples of the holiness of God.  We don’t have to long for the talent.  God gives us the grace we need to exude holiness.  You have witnessed it in people like Saint Mother Teresa and Pope Saint John Paul II.  You cannot emulate them just by your own desire.  You don’t have to!  God places his holiness in you sacramentally so you can be yourself and emulate holiness. 


Our nation desperately needs men and women who are unashamed to allow the holiness God has placed in them to be seen.  It is as easy as allowing God to show you how to be yourself. 


NEXT WEEK   Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time


Jer 20:10-13

Rom 5:12-15

Mt 10:26-33

Theme:  To follow Christ means to be outspoken in word and deed.







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