Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Dear Friends and Parishioners of Saint Jerome,

Pax Christi semper vobiscum!

Thank you once again to the families that carried out our Food Sale last weekend. Your initiative is surely a gift to the parish. Collaboration such as this makes our parish stronger. I am sure that your generosity and willingness to work for the Church will be rewarded by God Who sees all the good that you do.

I had a conversation with the 49th District Alderwoman last Tuesday, Maria Hadden. It was a very pleasant conversation as we both shared our hopes for the Rogers Park neighborhood. Since her office is still operating only virtually through various means of social media, she mentioned that she would be interested in having a town hall meeting for our parish so she can reach out to families and members of the community who might find speaking English a big challenge. The date has yet to be determined. I am certain that some of us participated already during the town hall meeting of October 7th. It is always good to know what is going on in our neighborhood as well as to be informed in terms of budget spending, safety concern issues, community resources for those who are in need as well as other outreach programs that benefit members of our community. I will make sure to give you an update about this upcoming town hall meeting for Saint Jerome Parish. 

You have probably realized that our Gospel reading this weekend is very timely in terms of the current political situation in the country. Yes, we are coming closer to the day of National Election. I encourage you to vote and to prudently practice your right as a citizen of the United States. The United States Catholic Conference of Bishops issued a document that may serve as our guide in choosing the candidates of your preference that according to our conscience may lead us to the common good. I encourage you to read the document in its entirety and to reflect on it together with reflection on the Gospel values. The Gospel this weekend strongly challenges us to,

“repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.”

Mt. 22:21

A well-formed conscience knows the truth, what is just and lawful. The separation of Church and State in terms of agenda and mission should not create a chasm that divides us from each other as God’s people. Rather, the separation of Church and State gives emphasis to the truth that both institutions hold which is that they should remain oriented to the achievement of the common good.

Our participation in social and political life as well as our involvement in the life of the Church should bring us the inner fulfillment that we long for. Yes, it is indeed true that we are exposed to so many political debates in the social media and perhaps some of those discussions have brought us frustration, uncertainty, anger and other human emotions that can bring our spirit down. Never let it happen. Our life is God’s and no matter how challenging the current political scenario may be, something good will always come out along the way, for it is only a matter of God’s time. 

Finally, the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed is coming soon. The Altar of Commemoration is prepared. If you would like a picture of your faithful departed loved ones to appear on the screen during the Evening of Prayer and Commemoration on October 31st, please bring those pictures to the Parish Office with the name of the departed on the back of the picture. Also, I encourage you not to wait until the last minute to get your candle of commemoration, so we can determine how many of those candles are needed before All Souls’ Day. We want to make sure that your faithful departed loved ones are remembered during the Masses during the month of November.

Stay safe. The Pandemic is not yet over. Please make sure to remain guarded and protected as you mingle with various people whenever you leave your house. Our parish will remain vigilant in implementing the guidelines to protect ourselves from any possible contagion of Covid19. I will see you next weekend.

Sincerely in Christ and Mary,