Gearing up for summer vacation? Consider enrolling in eGiving through Faith Direct to make sure your gifts reach St. Matthias the Apostle when you cannot, and our ministries can continue uninterrupted. Visit www.faithdirect.net and use our church code: MD41. Thank you for your continued support of our parish family!
God Bless You,
What is a novena? “Nine days of public or private prayer for some special occasion or intention.” Its origin goes back to the nine days that the disciples and Mary spent together in prayer between Ascension Thursday and Pentecost Sunday.
Our novena will focus on asking God to bless our living mothers, and to grant eternal rest to our deceased mothers. The novena of Masses for our mothers will be held beginning with the Vigil Mass on May 12th through May 20th. Names of those honored or remembered will be read during the Prayer of the Faithful at each of the Masses during this nine day period.
You may pick up your Mother’s Day Novena Cards and remembrance envelopes at the parish office during regular business hours. Cards will also be available in the church vestibule after Masses this weekend and next weekend. A $ 5.00 offering is suggested for each name submitted to the novena.
The Father Albert Hughes Scholarship was established during the 45th anniversary year (2005) of the parish and in honor of our founding pastor, Father Edward Albert Hughes. Funding for this scholarship program is drawn from the annual fiscal year revenue of the “Every Penny Counts” Box in the parish church. Other donations from benefactors may be periodically received as well and these too are placed into this scholarship fund. Read more about the scholarship here.
To be considered for this scholarship, each family must have a Financial Aid application on file with TADS. All requirements listed on the application must be satisfied in order for an application to be considered. This fund is only available to students whose families are registered in this parish.
Submit this application to the rectory or school office before Tuesday, May 1, 2018 in a sealed envelope addressed:
“Personal and Confidential”
Attention: Reverend John H. Kennealy, Pastor
Father E. Albert Hughes Scholarship Application for 2018-2019
Adult Bible Study will resume on Tuesday, April 10th, at 9:15 AM in the Hughes Center. We are studying the book of Acts and we will pick up on Chapter 17. Please come and bring a friend!
Marian Devotion is held the first Saturday of the month at 12:00 PM in the church. Please join us.
The St. Matthias Prayer Group meets in the church every Sunday immediately after the 11:30 AM Mass. All are welcome.
2018 Annual Jubilarian Mass: Cardinal Donald Wuerl will celebrate the annual Jubilarian Mass honoring couples married 25, 30, 40, 50, and 51+ years on Sunday, June 17, 2018 at 2:00 PM at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Please call the parish office or use the sign-up forms in the back of church to register. Names of jubilarians need to be turned in to the parish office by Monday, April 16, 2018.
Volunteers are needed to staff the front office in the Hughes Center for 4 hour shifts once or twice a month. Please call Thad Ereme at 301-459-4814 x 207 for more information.
Members of the African Community are remind-ed to pay their annual contribution for the Mothers Day and Fathers Day celebrations. Emmanuel Amanyeiwe and Veronica Ike are collecting your contributions.
Teen Youth Ministry April Meeting: All parish teens are welcome to attend our next meeting this Sunday, April 8th, from 12:00 –2:30 PM in the Hughes Center.
The Catholic Women’s Association meets after the 11:30 AM Mass on the second and fourth Sun-days of the month.
Vigil Mass Saturday, March 24 at 5:00 PM
Mass in Spanish Saturday, March 24 at 7:00 PM
Regular Mass Schedule on Sunday March 25 at 8:00 AM, 9:30 AM, 11:30 AM, 6:00 PM
Monday, March 26 Daily Mass 8:30 AM Adoration 6:00—8:00 PM Confessions 7:00 PM
Tuesday, March 27 Daily Mass 8:30 AM
Wednesday, March 28 Daily Mass 8:30 AM Living Stations 10:30 AM
Holy Thursday, March 29
Mass of the Lord’s Supper 7:30 PM with Eucharistic Adoration Following Mass
Good Friday, March 30 Confessions 10:00 AM-12:00 PM Stations of the Cross 12:00 PM Commemoration of the Lord’s Passion with Veneration and Holy Communion 7:30 PM
Holy Saturday, March 31 Blessing of Food and Baskets 12:00 PM Easter Vigil 8:00 PM (No 5:00 PM or 7:00 PM Masses)
Easter Sunday April 1 Masses at 8:00 AM, 9:30 AM, 11:30 AM, 1:30 PM (Spanish) (NO 6:00 PM Mass)
Grief Brief # 16
As we begin a new grief message this month our focus will be on how children face losses and how they express their grief.
A number of people believe that babies and small children are unaware of a loss that occurs within a family. This is not totally true. Although they don’t understand the concept of death and the loss that ensues, they do sense that something is amiss. Their parents and others are sad , and perhaps weeping. They can easily respond to this with clinging and restless behavior.
As children enter the 2-6 year age ranges they can easily sense the absence of someone loved. They are no longer there within the family or at gatherings. They ask about the person or wait for them to be present once again. There are lots of questions that await answers on their part. They can be told that their special person had become tired, weakened, or ill and has died. They have left the family and friends for a place of rest, peace, and happiness. Children brought up in a Christian home are told that heaven in that special place. God is there, and other deceased family members are there . Their dear ones are all happy and well. It is helpful to reassure children that at some point, as their lives end, they too will be able to see and be with their special persons. This can be comforting to children.
It can be noted that parents who receive the many questions about loss and death may not be able to respond adequately to the questions asked by children. They may be heavily grieving. In which case, adult family members can offer to provide the requested information. The language needs to be simple and offered in the easiest manner possible so that responses to questions are understood. Linking sadness and others feelings of loss to the explanations being given will help children to more easily accept the feelings that they are experiencing. It might be noted that when children grieve, they do so in shorter time periods. They may ask their questions, express their sad feelings , and then be off to do a favorite activity. How different from the sustained periods of grieving that adults experience!
Adolescents, who are experiencing losses of family members or friends, react in a totally different manner. They grieve, but their grief expressions may be deeply internal or very overt. There can be enraged or have a sense of unfairness about the death, especially if it was traumatic, or perhaps marked by suicide. Grief Counselors in the school setting and anguished parents make every effort to reach out and provide comfort. Teens, however, readily turn to peers to express their feelings of loss.
The behavior of teens may express an acting out of their sense of dismay at loosing someone close to them. Behaviors may become reckless, explosive, or repressed by silence and a lack of communication. Adults can offer their presence, caring, and any signs of comfort at this difficult time. Group activities like candlelight vigils or memorial gatherings are helpful, as are offers of individual counseling by professional persons.
As can be seen, expressions of grief, related to losses experienced, will vary with the age groups of children. The support of caring adults, simple answers to questions, and the opportunity to express sad feelings in safe and sincere manners will always be helpful to children, as well as teens. Participating in memorial services and funerals will help to heal grieving hearts in significant ways. Having children participate in these rituals that mark the passage from life to death can bring healing to them, especially if they are prepared for the experience by loving and caring adults.
A new year has begun, the holidays have come and gone, and we who have known loss and are grieving, wonder about what is next. What will the new year bring to our lives? Will there be continued sadness and the keenly-felt sense of loss? Can there be some reprieve?
As grief unfolds and continues to be experienced, it can lighten in intensity. The mere passing of time, however, will not bring about this outcome. It is the work and the efforts one expends in processing one’s grief that will result in needed healing and peacefulness. Healing leads to the relief of the intense sadness, the missing, and the sense that one couldn’t possibly go on and know happiness without the loved one who has died. None of this happens in rapid fashion none-the-less.
People go through their grieving and healing processes in an individual time frame and in their own personal manner. Short cuts, however, will interrupt the on-going process of healing. Comparing one’s progress with that of another is not helpful. Comparisons preclude the fact that we are all individuals, with our own personal histories and rate of grieving.
We read and learn about some basic ways of moving through grief, but as alluded to, we each have our own manner and time frame for doing that. We’ll take this opportunity to refresh our understanding of the grief process. What can or should one do to pass successfully through it?
First and foremost is the need to accept the fact that sadness and a deep sense of missing will occur after a significant loss. We cry, we talk about the emptiness felt in our lives, and question our own ability to go on without the deceased loved one. We accept the challenges that come our way early on, and rejoice over our successes in assuming unfamiliar or difficult tasks. Also, we look at priorities so we can ascertain what will now be important components of our lives. Family, friends, our health, our religious beliefs, and our God hold precedence for many. We look at difficult feelings like anger, regret, guilt, etc. and speak of them with trusted others so we can eventually let them go. And lastly, but not least of all, we reminisce. We remember the place our deceased loved one held in our lives. We express deep gratitude for the many ways they have touched and enriched our lives by being who they were for us.
It is important to remember that the sad memories of the grief process will be felt on special occasions throughout our whole lives, but the sad, painful memories soften over time. They are not as difficult to experience as they were in the early days and weeks of grieving.
A new year has begun! We can realize that with the healing energy acquired during past months of grieving we are better prepared for new undertakings, new pursuits, and a new future awaiting the “renewed and healed us”.
On November 29th the torch from the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City stopped at our parish. We celebrated Mass in Spanish before our guests left to take the torch to St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City arriving on Dec 12th.
Sunday, December 24, 2017 Christmas Eve
8:00 AM Mass
9:30 AM Mass
11:30 AM Mass
6:00 PM Mass
10:00 PM Mass with Carols before Mass
Monday, December 25, 2017 Christmas Day
8:00 AM Mass
11:30 AM Mass
1:30 PM Spanish Mass
Confessions are held Monday evenings
Now that the Thanksgiving holidays are upon us, we are drawn by a spirit of gratitude that speaks to us. Too often, however, we look around at our world and our lives, and foremost in our minds is not that which is enriching us and bringing us joy, but rather at that which we have lost. Someone significant to us will not be at our Thanksgiving dinner table. The gathering of family for the holiday weekend makes us keenly aware of the fact that someone very special will be absent for all of the sharing and fun that holiday get-togethers can bring.
We do have a choice about how we can keep the memory of our deceased loved ones alive and with us. This may entail including the missing persons, by name, in our blessing before the Thanksgiving meal. In the toast that may be a part of our meal, the names of our loved ones might also be mentioned. Sharing stories of holidays past will most assuredly have those who are gathered remembering and recalling memories that inevitably include the absent loved ones. These are both memorable, as well as humorous. Before very long, our loved ones’ stories and anecdotes are a part of the conversation. Somber or cautious feelings lighten significantly. Those who have been trying to avoid their own sadness or tears, as well as fearing to provoke sadness in others, may soon be laughing and smiling as everyone shares and reminisces.
It does take a bit of courage to start such sharing, and thus it requires the bravest among us to be the initiators. It is good to recognize that the positive results of the endeavor far outweigh any negative or foreboding feelings one may have in being the “initiator”. I would encourage any or all of the practices that were just suggested because I know that they work.
As indicated earlier, the Thanksgiving holidays invite us to be thankful. Taking some quiet time to consider how the special persons who were a part of our lives have enriched them is important. We have been graced by their presence for varying numbers of years. During that time the memories of who they were for us remain. We remember that they had qualities that we have always admired and would choose to emulate in our own lives. We take the time to thank them for having brought the gift of themselves into our world and into our personal lives.
Thankfulness for those who still remain with us is also very much in order. We share love and support with each other as we gather on special occasions like the holidays. We acknowledge that we are able to heal and move forward in our grief journey because of the love and support of these dear persons.
May our good and gracious God shower His blessings upon each of us as we experience this holiday and the next ones that will soon follow.