Pentecost Sunday

Dear Parishioners and Friends of Saint Jerome,

May the peace and blessings of Jesus Christ be with you all!

Congratulations to our newly confirmed students of Religious Education. I ask that you continue to deepen your encounter with Jesus Christ by participating joyfully in the life of the Church. For everyone, please know that that there is another group of Confirmation candidates who will receive the sacrament in September. Please pray for their mindfulness of the importance of their witnessing to their Baptismal Promises. Our parish has the responsibility to accompany them and their families towards a more responsible and devotional practice of the Catholic Faith. Our prayer for them is an important spiritual expression of accompaniment. In addition, our effort to invite them to participate in our parish life is a practical way to cultivate the seed of faith that we have planted in each of them.

Congratulations to Hilda Delgado, Soledad de la Luz and Oscar Herrera upon their graduation last weekend from their two-year Pastoral Leadership course at Mundelein Seminary.  Hilda will be leading our Baptismal Preparation Team together with Deacon Francisco. Soledad will work with Beatriz Mendoza Breton in preparing our young girls in the parish who will celebrate their 15th Birthday/Quinceañera. They will also contribute their gifts and talents in preparing our parish liturgies. Oscar expressed his commitment to coordinate our parish fund-raising events, as he is also a member of our Parish Finance Council. It is a blessing for our parish to have dedicated members who are willing to be leaders and coordinators of various ministries. Please pray for them and know that the success of the mission of Jesus Christ in this local church depends upon our willingness to be zealous workers in the vineyard of the Lord.

Our gratitude to Martin Cambron and his nephew for working tediously to repair the broken section of our alley between the Rectory and the Parish Center. This area between our buildings will be used as our gathering space during the summertime while we continue to adjust to the slow but steady process of recovery from the pandemic. Our Food Sales which are sponsored by our parish groups and individual families provide much-needed extra income for the parish operations. I have mentioned before that your appreciation of their generosity is well expressed by patronizing our weekend Food Sales.

We are presently in the second phase of our Convent chapel restoration. You must know by now that the roof of the chapel collapsed due to the weight of the snow during the last winter storm in February. The damaged area of the roof has been repaired; however, the interior structure of the building was also damaged. I was in conversation with the Archdiocesan project manager and the construction company during the week. It is projected that the interior restoration process will begin in early June as soon as all the paperwork is done. Also, we are still waiting for the completion of our chime restoration in the east bell tower.  The Verdin Company will return as soon as the corrected electrical sources are installed.

Yes, there are plenty of blessings for which we ought to be thankful. All these projects require much energy and patience. Event organization demands our participation and collaboration. Our parish life goes on. I hope that you have seen how our parish life unfolded during the peak of the pandemic and now during our transition of recovery from it. There were some members of our parish who got sick, some passed away, others lost their jobs, while there were some others who gave birth to new life after a long period of home quarantine. It is often hard to see how the Hand of God is at work in the ordinariness of our daily routines, especially when the situations are challenging. The celebration of Pentecost reminds us that no matter how difficult our situations might be, God never abandons us. We are assured that our Baptism in Christ and our Confirmation seals the covenant of God with us. The Eucharist that we celebrate brings Jesus Himself into our hearts as our spiritual food when we receive Him worthily, wherein we become enveloped in the Divine Identity that Christ shared with us at His Incarnation and ratified by His Death and Resurrection.

Summertime is on its way. Watch out for the upcoming events and be a part of them! See you next weekend. Have a blessed week.

Sincerely in Christ and Mary,