We celebrate Catholic Schools Week January 31-February 6. We are blessed to have two schools on our campus, The Franciscan School (K-8) and the St. Francis Pre-School (2-5 year olds). Both are outstanding schools with great leadership and excellent faculty and staff. A Catholic School education is a big financial investment but so worth it. Our students receive an excellent intellectual formation and learn Catholic values that will last a lifetime, just to name two reasons to consider it. The commitment of our parents is incredible, among the most impressive I have experienced in my 40 years of priesthood. There will be several events within the schools this week. Notably, the fourth grade will lead our weekly School Mass on Wednesday at 10:00am. Please consider joining us virtually at 10:00am via our parish website for this week’s Mass, indeed every week at 10:00am on Wednesday when the various grades of the school celebrate the Mass that is then relayed out to the other classes at The Franciscan School in keeping with our COVID-19 protocols.
Fr. Jairo has experienced a disruption to his visa change process. The U.S. Embassy in Bogotá canceled his appointment for January 30 without notifying him, stating, when he contacted them, that the Embassy was closed due to COVID-19. When he left the United States on January 21, the current visa in his passport expired as he was previously approved for a different one that required him to return to Colombia for processing. Senator Tillis’ office has made an intervention to the Embassy requesting an emergency appointment be granted to him and we now await the response of the Embassy. Please keep this in your prayers as the Embassy indicated to Fr. Jairo earlier last week that his next window for a regular appointment would be “sometime in April.”
We are in the final weeks before our new membership platform, Realm, will go live to all our parishioners. Realm is a church ministry internet tool which connects our entire church as one network. Among its benefits, you may view your giving history (which others cannot see), update your contact information, see any ministries (called Groups) that you are currently in, as well as the names of other members of the Group(s). I encourage you to activate your Realm account when you receive your invitation from us in the near future.