Are you wondering what Christianity is all about?
Are you curious about the Catholic Church?
Have you not received First Communion and/or Confirmation?
Are you engaged or married to a Catholic, and want to know why they believe “all that stuff”?
Are you returning to the Church after a long absence?
Or are you simply interested in learning more about the Faith you already profess and practice?
THE ALPHA COURSE classes began on Tuesday, May 6th, in Fr. D'Arco Hall, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
(There is no commitment, cost , or obligation to you!)
A new Great Adventure Bible Study group is forming to study the 24-session foundational Bible study, The Bible Timeline. It will meet on Thursday evenings, 7:00-9:00 p.m., in the Religious Education Center, room 11, beginning 6/26/14. (The times will change to 7:30-9:30 p.m. following Labor Day.) The RE Center is located directly behind the church, off of Sara Road. The facilitators are Ronda and David Fernandez.
All Great Adventure studies require participants to have a Catholic version of the Bible and a Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC). The optional, but strongly recommended study kit will cost $30.
Our parish has adoration of the Blessed Sacrament available 24/7 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week)! Adorers are always needed! Click below for times with urgent needs for adorers.
"Could you not keep watch for one hour?" Mark 14:37
My dear family,
We now enter into the most sacred of all weeks – Holy Week. During these seven days we are invited to walk with our Lord on the road to Calvary and experience within ourselves the glory of His Resurrection. It is my hope that we all try to join in as many of the services that we can, especially the principle services of Holy Week: the Mass of the Lord's Supper, the Liturgy of the Passion, and the Easter Vigil Mass. A few notes on this week:
1. Please note that all the priests will be hearing confessions three times a day on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday – with a visiting priest joining us at the 7 pm confessions. The priests are in a much better mood on these days than they are on Holy Saturday! Don't wait until the last minute to make your confession!
2. On Holy Thursday we will have Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament at the Altar of Repose from after the Mass until midnight. We should make it a point of honor to spend some time in adoration on Holy Thursday, remembering the question our Lord asked of us that night: "Could you not watch with Me one hour?"
3. Good Friday is a day of strict obligation of fasting (one meal only) and abstaining from eating meat.
4. Traditionally, on Good Friday Catholics refrain from worldly amusements: secular television, movies and music, parties, needless shopping, etc. It is a day of sorrow and mourning over the sufferings and death of our Lord.
5. It is praiseworthy, but not under pain of sin, to fast and abstain from eating meat on Holy Saturday, as the Church sits by the tomb of her Lord in mourning.
6. The Lenten Fast ends with the Easter Vigil, which in our parish is 8:30 pm.
7. Yes, the Holy Saturday Easter Vigil fulfills the Easter SundayMass obligation – in fact it is THE great Mass of Easter.
8. Everyone wants to go to the High Mass on Easter Sunday. Unfortunately the church cannot hold everyone. If you want to hear Mass in the church at 9 or 11 am, get there early, because, once the church is full, you will be asked to go to the outdoor Masses at Vista Verde cemetery.
9. Actually, the two outdoor Masses on Easter morning are very beautiful. Our wonderful LifeTeen choir provides the music. We provide some chairs, but it is a good idea to bring your own chairs or a blanket. If you have young children, these two Masses are ideal for your family. Pray for good weather! If there is bad weather, we will have tents set up at the cemetery.– so there will be the two Masses at Vista Verde, no matter what!
10. At the end of all the Easter Masses, we will have the blessing of the children's Easter baskets. This is a lovely custom that helps the children tie in their Easter candy with the Resurrection.
11. And the blessed Pascal water will be available after all the Easter Masses to take with you to bless your homes.
A truly blessed Holy Week to you all!
Msgr. Doug Raun
This Sunday is called "Laetare Sunday" ("Rejoice Sunday"), because we are now half-way through Lent. The special liturgical thing about Laetare Sunday is that the vestments are "rose" color (not pink - the clergy can be sensitive about being told that they look good in pink!) Rose is a color half-way between purple and white, so it shows that we are half-way between Ash Wednesday and Easter.
It is always a good day to take stock of our Lenten observances. If we have not been keeping Lent as we ought to, or if we have "fallen off the wagon" with our Lenten penance, now is the time to start again. Half a Lent is better than none! Three more weeks to the glory of Easter!
This week I will be preaching the Lenten Mission at Holy Child Parish in Tijeras. Fr. Mark Granito, the pastor of Holy Child, will be taking my Masses today (Sunday). The mission is only an evening mission, so I will be coming home each night and will be in the office during the day. Please pray for the success of the mission, for the conversion of sinners and the stirring of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of the faithful!
Remember that this Friday is a day of abstinence from eating meat.
Attendance at Stations and Benediction on Friday has been very good. What a beautiful thing to do for Lent, 3 and 7 pm.
And remember the special confessions every Friday during Lent at 7 pm during the Stations. Both Fr. Anthony and I are hearing, and we stay until the last penitent has confessed. Much better to make our confession now than to wait to Holy Saturday!
A blessed Lenten week!
Msgr. Doug Raun
This week is Ash Wednesday, the start of the Holy Season of Lent, when we join our Lord in spirit as He fasted for 40 days, and prepare to celebrate the great mysteries of Holy Week.
Please review the Lenten regulations that you can find on the front page. The days of fasting and abstinence are now so few, and the need to make atonement for sin so great, that we want to keep these days of penance with great care and devotion.
Now is when we should all be thinking about what voluntary acts of penance we should be doing during Lent – be it keeping the ancient tradition of only eating one meal for the weekdays of Lent, or giving up any other lawful pleasure.
Lent is also a time of greater prayer. Of course, the best way to keep Lent is to go to daily Mass. Remember that we have the 6pm Mass especially for people to attend after work. For everyone, but perhaps in a special way for those who cannot attend daily Mass, we have the Stations of the Cross and Benediction each Friday at 3 pm and 7pm.
Also note that we will have extra confessions every Friday of Lent at 7 pm (during the Stations of the Cross). These proved to be very popular last year, and of course the most important thing we do during Lent is make a good confession.
We should also be mindful of what works of almsgiving and mercy we wish to do in a special way during Lent.
Plan ahead now for our Lenten Mission, which will be March 10-13. Fr. Celsus Aguiste, our wonderful and Spirit-filled preacher from the island of Dominica, returns to be our missionary this year.
A blessed Lent to you all!
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9:00am - 5:00pm, Monday - Friday. Closed on Holidays and Holy Days of Obligation.
Saturday: 5:00pm, Sunday: 7:00am, 9:00am, 11:00am, 12:30pm, & 6:00pm.
9:00am & 6:00pm.
Weekdays: 8:30am & 5:30pm. Saturday: 8:30am, 3:00pm - 4:30pm, & 6:00pm - 7:00pm.
08.01.2014 5:30 pm - 5:55 pmConfessions
08.01.2014 6:00 pm - 6:30 pmMass
08.02.2014 8:30 am - 8:55 amConfessions
08.02.2014 9:00 am - 9:30 amMass
08.02.2014 3:00 pm - 4:30 pmConfessions
08.02.2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pmVigil Mass
08.02.2014 6:00 pm - 7:00 pmConfessions
St. Thomas Aquinas Parish 1502 Sara Rd. NE Rio Rancho, NM 87124 Tel: (505) 892-1511