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First Sunday of Advent - Happy New Year!

Dear St. Catherine's Parish Family

This Sunday we begin the season of Advent, which is a special time for us as we prepare to celebrate the birth of our Lord at Christmas. This first Sunday of Advent actually marks the beginning of our liturgical year as Catholics. With the new liturgical year, we begin a new cycle of Mass readings, and you may have noticed that we replaced our pew missals with a new set which includes the new cycle of readings.

I want to draw your attention, as well, to the front inside cover of the new pew missal. Several people have asked me to provide a translation for the Latin chant parts of the Mass that we use, so I have inserted a label on the inside front cover with the Latin chant parts along with the English translation underneath. As a reminder, the Church encourages us to use these Latin chant parts and has expressed that all Catholics be familiar with them (see Second Vatican Council Document on the Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium 54). I find that they truly add to the sense of mystery and reverence that we ought to have for the Mass.

I also wanted to let you know that after the Christmas season, we will be making some changes to the music for our 5:00pm Mass on Sundays. We will begin to incorporate some more contemporary hymns while maintaining traditional Eucharistic hymns and Mass parts. Our youth minister, James Perkins, will provide the musical support for this Mass on the piano and guitar. Our teens and their families are encouraged, in particular, to attend this Mass, and I also want to invite our teens to consider serving as greeters, lectors, and altar servers. Additionally, all teens are invited to join us immediately following the 5:00 Mass for our “Life Nights,” which are a wonderful opportunity for faith and fellowship.

As we begin this Advents season, let’s ask the Lord to instill in us a deep reverence for these great mysteries of our faith and to help to prepare a place for him in our hearts and homes as we anticipate his birth this Christmas.

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