A number of commentators on the significance of Thanksgiving in 2020 have noted the importance of daily gratitude as an antidote to this most difficult year. In the midst of so much hardship, isolation, illness, suffering, and death, the truth of the Lord’s victory over evil, sin, and death is more important than ever to remember and to lean into. It has certainly been important for my family and me as we have dealt with multiple deaths this year from cancer, serious depression, and COVID-19. No matter what your struggles have been this year, I pray that you can give thanks for the Lamb who was slain to set us free from the bonds of evil, sin, and death, even when they appear to have the upper hand. Remember, they only have the upper hand temporarily. The Lord’s victory assures us that they will not prevail eternally for those who place their trust in Him and his saving death and resurrection. This truth gives me hope. I hope it does for you as well.

You raised the bar on generosity this month! 276 frozen turkeys for needy families in response to a request for 70 and the largest amount of food given in our history to restock the food pantry at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church in Louisburg (not to mention the additional $3500 donated) are two examples. Hunger has been dealt a
blow and for this I am grateful to you for your amazing goodness to those in need. 

Advent begins this weekend, a season in which we consider the importance of the Lord’s continual coming into our lives and our world. We focus in the first days of this short liturgical season on the Second Coming of Christ and, as the season prepares us for the celebration of Christmas, the importance of the Lord’s first coming as an
infant in Bethlehem. But there is also a third coming of the Lord, the one that occurs each day of our lives. I encourage each household of the parish to make time each day to pray with the Word of God, especially the scriptures given to us by the Church for each day of Advent in the lectionary, to spend some time in prayerful reflection, and to make a larger place available in your hearts for the Lord who is always waiting at your door to enter. There are spiritual resources available on our website to assist you on this journey, some internal by our staff and some external by national publishing houses. 

I invite you to participate in our annual Advent Giving Tree ministry. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this ministry that serves the poor will be conducted virtually. Please go to the parish website and click the link to see how you may brighten the lives of someone in need by a material gift, a financial donation, and/or a gift card donation.

Msgr. Clay

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