You are here
Archives: October 2020
TOGETHER IN FAITH
Annually, we create a report to review the life of our parish as well as look ahead to the coming year. Reflecting on the past fiscal year has been a challenging and very interesting task.
Our fiscal year, which concluded on June 30, 2020, started on one trajectory and has evolved and changed as we have lived through a global pandemic and unrest in our city. We have continued to live our mission and values at The Basilica, and we have revised our programs and ministries to continue to meet the needs of our community.
This year, more than ever, we have learned the importance of our Basilica community. During these challenging times, while we have livestreamed the celebration of the Eucharist, we have missed gathering as a community to celebrate the Eucharist together.
The pandemic has been frightening and stressful in countless ways. In the midst of the uncertainty and confusion caused by the pandemic we have looked to our faith for comfort and guidance. And we have learned to welcome people virtually to our Basilica community.
We began livestreaming Mass in March and have continued to build our livestream tools and platforms over the past six months. Our staff has transitioned to new roles and adapted how we provide our ministries.
As we look ahead to the future, we continue to make contingency plans—not knowing what the future will bring, but looking ahead with faith and hope, and knowing that we will support each other.
Please remember, no matter what brings you to The Basilica, virtually or in-person, and wherever you are in your faith journey, you are welcome here.
Rev. John M. Bauer
Pastor, The Basilica of Saint Mary
Cover photo: Virtual Choir Children of Light
Recorded August 10, 2020
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children
of light, for light produces every kind of goodness and righteousness and truth.
Ephesians 5: 8-9
Featuring the Cathedral Choristers of The Basilica of Saint Mary under the
direction of Teri Larson.
Children of Light (24-96850), Music by Valerie Ann Webdell
This Sunday’s Gospel reminds us of the two most important commandments which summarize Jesus’ teachings: love God with all your heart, soul and mind, and love your neighbor like yourself.
Most of us embrace this, at least to a point. The important question is, who do we believe to be our neighbor? Sure, it is easy to love those we interact with on a daily basis and those we are comfortable with. It is, however, clear that Jesus does not want us to stop there, neither does the Church.
Today’s first reading from the Book of Exodus clarifies who our neighbor is. Our neighbor is the foreigner, the widow, the orphan, the poor person. This reading also makes it quite clear how God feels about failure to do so. God’s punishment for those who oppress a stranger, wrong a widow or orphan, or extort a poor neighbor is quite simple: “I will kill you with the sword.” Even if we do not take this literally, the message is clear: this kind of behavior is unacceptable to God.
The biggest temptation and greatest danger to Christianity is the ease with which we water down its meaning and white-wash its message. History clearly teaches how this has led to the abuse and high jacking of Christianity by outside interests. History also confirms how Christians at times have been manipulated to support ideologies that are paradoxical to Christianity.
A very poignant example is the Holocaust. The holocaust is the antithesis of the first and second commandment. The Holocaust was able to happen because people were made to believe that Jews, Roma, people with disabilities, and homosexuals are not our neighbor. This very thought still supports the discrimination of these and many other people, even today.
Another horrific example is the justification and support of slavery by Christians which led to unconscionable atrocities in this and many other countries. The erroneous and evil thought that allowed slavery to exist is still reverberating in the deeply rooted sin of racism that rears it ugly head over and over again in our society and in our institutions.
If we are indeed followers of Christ we are to love ALL people as our neighbors and we are to love them as ourselves. That is exactly what Christ asks us to do.
Our mission as Christians is to protect and support unborn children, but also those children who have been born. Our mission is to make sure all children have access to education. Our mission is to make sure everyone has housing, clothing, food. Our mission is to eradicate all discrimination and to work for justice and equality for all regardless of race, gender, creed or way of life. Our mission is to welcome the stranger rather than to put them in cages or to build walls to keep them out. Our mission is to provide healthcare for everyone especially those suffering due to COVID 19 during this current pandemic. Our mission is to make sure that our planet is safe from human exploitation and destruction and is preserved for future generations. Our mission is to end and prevent wars. Our mission is to abolish the death penalty.
In sum, our mission as Christians is to love our neighbor; every neighbor; all neighbors, without exception, no matter how different they are from us, for it is what God commands us to do, no more, no less. That is true Christianity.
I hope this message finds you and your family continuing to stay well during these very challenging times.
Today I am happy to report that Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization Units has been installed in the church and the Saint Cecilia room. These units will purify the air in The Basilica.
This technology is already being used at places like the Mayo Clinic, local schools, and museums. It will be a tremendous help in ensuring the safety and well being of all those who come to The Basilica.
Additionally, we have another couple of weeks to go on the tuck-pointing on the exterior western wall of The Basilica. This work was interrupted by the recent snow and cold weather, but we hope to resume it within the next week to 10 days. We are very blessed and fortunate that both of these projects are being paid for by The Basilica Landmark.
I also want to thank all of those who have made a commitment of financial support to our Basilica Annual Fund. Your contributions to the Annual Fund allow us to offer the many programs, services and ministries that are at the heart of our Basilica community.
If you have already made a commitment of reoccurring financial support for our Basilica community, please know of my gratitude. I hope you will continue it and if possible increase it. Your commitment of financial support, no matter how small or how large, enables us to continue to do those things that fulfill our vision here at The Basilica.
If you are not able to make an ongoing financial commitment, I ask you to give what you can, when you can. I thank you in advance for whatever financial support you can commit to. Please know whatever you are able to give will be appreciated.
If you are not able to make a financial commitment or even to contribute occasionally, I ask you to pray for our parish and for your fellow parishioners. Please know your prayers both needed and are deeply appreciated.
If you are experiencing some financial difficulties, please contact our St. Vincent de Paul Ministry. We may be able to help you or refer you to someone who can.
Finally, I would like to invite you to join us for either our 11:30am or our 4:30pm Masses on Sunday. If you are not able to join us for one of these Masses I invite you to join us via livestream our 9:30am Mass. Also as I have mentioned previously, In addition to our 11:30am and 4:30pm Sunday Masses, our 7:00am and our Noon daily Masses are also open to the public.
We do ask that you pre-register for our Sunday Masses and our Noon daily Mass, but you can register for the 7:00am Mass at the door. You can register online or by calling the parish office.
The check-in tables for all of our liturgies, with the exception of the 7:00am daily Mass, are located inside the ground level doors on the southwest side of The Basilica, near the circle drive and the flagpole. This area is large enough so that people won’t have to wait in the cold to check-in.
Finally, as always, if you have questions or concerns about anything that is happening at The Basilica, please contact me at the parish office or send me an email. My contact information is available on our parish website.
God of all hope we call on you today, and
We pray for those who are living in fear:
Fear of illness, fear for loved ones, fear of other’s reactions to them.
May your Spirit give us a sense of calmness and peace.
We pray for your church in this time of uncertainty:
For those people who are worried about attending worship.
For those forced to make decisions in order to care for other
For those who will feel isolated.
Grant us your wisdom.
Holy God, we remember that you have promised that
Nothing will separate us from your love – demonstrated to us in Jesus Christ.
Help us turn our eyes, hearts and minds to you.
October 28, 9:00am
Join our parish online gathering. An opportunity to talk about different aspects of our parish life with Fr. Bauer.
Evening Prayer for All Souls
November 1, 3:00pm
The names of all those who have died within the last year will be mentioned during the Litany of the Saints. Please submit names to be listed by October 27.
News and Resources
Come together in prayer for the election.
“We cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every Life.”
Pope Francis – On the Death of George Floyd, June 3, 2020
- A Novena from the Latin novem meaning nine, is a series of nine prayers over the course of nine consecutive days or week. It can be a time of preparation for the celebration of the feast of a saint. It can also lead up to an important event or be occasioned by a grave need.
- An Octave, from the Latin octo meaning eight is a series of eight days of prayers either preceding or following an important celebration such as Christmas or Easter.
Pope Francis – Angelus on October 18, 2020
A Prayer for Justice and Peace
St. Martin de Porres, Advocate for Justice and Peace, Pray for Us!
A Prayer for Unity and Harmony
St. Francis, Promotor of Harmony and Peace, Pray for Us!
For the Preservation and Protection of Our World
St. Kateri Tekakwitha, Guardian of the Land, Pray for Us!
For all children in our world
St. Joseph, Foster Father of Jesus, Pray for Us!
For immigrants, migrants and asylum seekers
(St. Frances Cabrini)
For those who suffer due to COVID19 or any other illness
(St. Teresa of Calcutta)
For those who are unemployed and under-employed
For all candidates for elected office
St. Thomas More, patron saint of politicians, pray for us.
For all people in our nation
Our Lady of Guadalupe and Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, pray for us.
In our weekly video series "Art That Surrounds Us," Johan van Parys, Ph.D., our Director of Liturgy and Sacred Arts, shares information about a piece from The Basilica of Saint Mary's art collection. In this week's installment, Johan is in our chapel dedicated to Saint Therese of Lisieux. Her life and writings inspire us all to be everyday saints, doing small things with great love. May we aspire to become members of the host of little saints, contributing to God's love and spreading God's love throughout our world.