Dear People of Saint Anne,
I think that we can all agree that we are living at a time where so many people are struggling with different degrees of anxiety. COVID-19 has initiated so much unease and concern. We worry about our elderly parents knowing how vulnerable they are. We worry about our children in terms of their safety and well – being. This pandemic is leaving a wave of economic uncertainty. COVID-19 fatigue leaves so many frustrated or overwhelmed. There has been the unfortunate polarization of public safety protocols. The isolation and reduction of social contact like sports, going to church and other communal activities have resulted in a prolific increase in mental health challenges.
We must make a special effort to center our lives on the Lord. We look to many places to relieve the anxiety and stress in our lives. Let us surrender to the Lord; let us seek his comfort and reassurance. We will turn the corner on COVID. Each day brings us closer to a return of some of the personal freedoms we have had to relinquish for the common good.
As pastor, I see such remarkable efforts to support the common good. In many ways, it is at the heart of the mission of our parish community. Our many ministries witness to the love of Christ. Whether we bring comfort to the homebound, feed the hungry, bury our beloved departed or reach out to our lonely elderly – let our motivation be, “Love one another as I have loved you.”
This weekend is Commitment Weekend for the Annual Catholic Appeal. This year’s theme is very appropriate considering the time and age we live, Come Follow Me… and bring hope to the world. The Appeal supports many resources and ministries in the Archdiocese and beyond. Last year the Appeal raised $14 million dollars, more than half of that went directly to parish communities. Many of these parishes are financially overwhelmed by the pandemic. Well over a third of the money raised went to support Archdiocesan outreach ministries. Catholic Relief Services is also a recipient of the Appeal. Many of you may have already received an invitation to support the Appeal in the mail.
The following pages will help you to donate to the cause remotely. Our parish goal is $156,427. Anything that we receive above that figure will stay in the parish and help with our own capital needs that are not included in our Legacy of Faith Campaign.
This past week we celebrated Catholic Schools Week in our Parish School. As Mrs. Kapka, our wonderful Principal, informed you in last week’s Page 2 letter, we are blessed by our in person parish school and the courageous teachers who teach and form our children. Saint Anne Parish School is the oldest Catholic Grade School in Lake County. This year has been one of the most challenging in our history, but our school administration, our teachers, the Reopening Team and the commitment of our School Advisory Board have more than met the challenge. We are Blessed.
Be at Peace,
Father Bernie Pietrzak