We have heard yet again the tragic news of a mass shooting, and last weekend the news was from the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA. Last Sunday evening, the Beth Meyer synagogue here in Raleigh hosted a Tree of Life Vigil. The synagogue, on that evening, was packed, well over a thousand people, and it was a mix of Jews, Christians, and Muslims, all present to pray, listen, and hold candles for peace. It was an evening of solidarity in faith, a witness that especially in dark times, as people of faith we come together and hear once more words from our shared faith tradition. At the service, these words from Psalm 23 were read, “even when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil, for your rod and your staff comfort me.” Words of light even amid the chaos.

On Thursday evening October 25, our parish hosted a session in which we reported back what we have learned about the clerical abuse situation. You can find more information from the diocese about our safe environment program on page 3 of this bulletin. Thanks to our staff which attended a listening
session on this at the diocese, and also our staff which helped to develop our Safe Environment program here at St. Francis.

Next weekend our parish hosts our annual Fair Trade and Alternative Gifts market. This market is always a great opportunity to do some early Christmas shopping, to find gifts that are hand-made, often by people who live and work in difficult economic circumstances, and to see beautiful craftsmanship from artisans from around the world. You can stop by after all the Masses next weekend.

Blessings on your week!

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