Browsing From the desk of Fr. Tharp

October 2, 2021 - 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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

Beacons of Light


Since I am writing this on September 27 and the reveal of the BOL Families will be announced on October 1, (and since my crystal ball is malfunctioning,) I cannot offer any insight in this article regarding the pairing of our (St. Ann and Sacred Heart) pastoral region with other parishes into a “Family.”   I will attempt to offer my perspective via email to members of both parishes on October 3.


Please reference the Beacons of Light web page for the most up-to-date information at: https://catholicaoc.org/beacons-of-light.  


October 3 is Respect Life Sunday


The grace of the Holy Spirit poured out on creation brings life.  If life is a direct reflection of God, then human life must be most worthy of respect.  We see this evidenced in the Decalogue and throughout Sacred Scripture.  If life is an extension of God’s creative force, it is only logical to worship the Creator by respecting his creation. 


This theme will permeate the worship on Respect Life Sunday. 


RCIA begins on Wednesday, October 6


Remember to invite anyone interested to the first RCIA meeting on Wednesday, October 6 in the basement of Sacred Heart Church at 7:00 p.m.   Please take one of the schedules available at the Church doors.


Blessing of Animals in honor of Feast of St. Francis


At 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 3, we will have the annual blessing of pet animals in the west parking lot of Sacred Heart Church.  Please do not bring animals you cannot control or animals which might pose a risk to other pets.  Families should socially space from other families with their pets; even if you are sure your dog won’t harm another family pet.  Keeping the pets away from each other is a great way to make the blessing more peaceful and uneventful.  Also please do not put your elderly pet at risk by placing them in a stressful situation.  We do not want any pet or person to suffer ill effects from being in close proximity to other animals or even people.  Remember, your pet can receive the blessing “remotely” if you simply bring a picture of the pet to the event.  I will bless the picture.  Remember that I like most all animals (except for certain insects and poisonous reptiles) because of my rural roots.  Some people may be fearful of a pet because of its size or demeanor.  In other words, use common sense and make this a happy experience of seeing God in all his creation.


Attention parish or school volunteers who work with or around children


Are you aware that the Archdiocese of Cincinnati has moved all parishes and schools from using the “Virtus” Child Protection program to the “Safe Parish” program?   If you are a volunteer classroom parent in the school, a coach, drama club volunteer, scout volunteer, etc  please note that you should have received new content via your email.  Fulfillment of this requirement is mandatory for anyone working with children.  Please contact your parish safe environment coordination if you are uncertain whether you are registered or approved. 


As we have returned to school and fall programs ramp up, 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 a precept Mass from St. Ann and Sacred Heart each week

Since I live stream both the 4:00 p.m. at Sacred Heart and the 5:15 p.m. at St. Ann; I usually manage to live stream both, but on rare occasions the internet is out at one or the other location.   If this happens, be assured that I will make every effort to correct the malfunction before the next weekend.

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:

“A Sacrament is an outward sign, instituted by Christ, which gives grace.”   If you were born before 1958 and raised as a Catholic from birth, this was the definition of a Sacrament you were taught straight from the Baltimore Catechism on which you were raised.  But since marriage as a formal bonding of the male and female of the species existed long before Jesus; how could Jesus have instituted marriage?  The answer is that Jesus did not begin the practice of pair bonding for the procreation of the species; he instituted the Sacrament!  In other words he made the experience holy and a source of grace.    


All seven of the sacraments are tangible experiences.   Jesus makes them holy by giving them to us as a source of sanctifying grace.  Baptism, Confirmation, and Holy Eucharist are called “Sacraments of Initiation” as they make us part of the Church.


The Sacraments of Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick heal us from sin.  The Sacrament of Holy Orders commissions those of us called to a religious vocation to serve in the apostolic tradition outlined in First Letter of Paul to Timothy.  All the Sacraments reveal Jesus lifting up the natural and allowing it to be a tangible vehicle of God’s supernatural grace.  In the Sacrament of Matrimony, Jesus lifts up the most natural thing in the world; namely the love of man and woman and the desire to create a home together, to be an opportunity for the power of Jesus Christ to be visible and working in the human society.    The power of the Sacrament of Marriage allows a family dwelling to become a holy household; and a nation of holy households to build up the Kingdom of God.  This is why those who hate God, always attack the family first.  If you want to attack society, first you erode the foundation. 


Next Week

Wis 7:7-11

Heb 4:12-13

Mk 10:17-30


Theme:   The “camel” and the “eye of a needle.”




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