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The Holy Spirit brings the gift of Unity, Peace and Mission

 “Peace be with you! […] Peace be with you; as the Father has sent me, so I send you”
 pentecost giclee ebulletin rgb
In the Gospel narratives of these last weeks, Jesus speaks and teaches repeatedly about the advocate, the paraclete, the counselor – the Holy Spirit who will inspire you with the right words to speak, the right tone of voice, the right approach to a delicate situation.

 

For Pentecost, it may seem strange that the Gospel account is from John, in the week after the resurrection: Jesus appears to the apostles, breathes on them and says: “Peace be with you! [and then he says again, for emphasis],  “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent me, so I send you!” From some of the friends and mentors of St. Monica who are liturgical music composers, I would draw your attention to two beautiful compositions by David Haas and John Angotti - click links to enjoy!

 

The image at right is called Pentecost by John August Swanson. Mr. Swanson has said of the image: "In my image of PENTECOST, I see the Spirit of God, re-energizing all people and bringing us together to work for peace, to heal the Earth, and to honor the diversity of our life's journey.

 

This year, as we celebrate Pentecost, we have been given the gift of UNITY and PEACE by the Holy Spirit. "We have been given the gift of unity and peace by the Holy Spirit. In the colors of the Liturgy, Red is associated with two distinct types of feasts : Apostles and Martyrs, those who have died for their faith, and with feasts related to the Holy Spirit. On Sunday, wear red with us to celebrate Pentecost and tag your photo #StMonicaSpirit. Post pictures of your family, household, you wearing Pentecost Red and celebrate with us!

 

Dale Sieverding, Director of Worship

Highlights

  • Archbishop José H. Gomez dispenses all the Catholic faithful of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and all Catholics currently in the Archdiocese from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass until further notice. Furthermore, the public celebration of Mass continues to be suspended in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles until further notice. Click here to read the liturgical guidelines.
  • Meet us on the Duval Patio (virtual of course) after Sunday Mass for a cup of coffee and a doughnut.. We'll share 15–20 mins together as a large group and go into breakout rooms for smaller conversations. Register in advance, HERE.
  • It Is customary for the Church to keep special days of prayer in anticipation of major feast days. Pentecost traditionally had a Novena: 9 days of prayer between Ascension Thursday (the 40th day after Easter) to Pentecost (the 50th day after Easter). We have curated resources for adults and children to pray for the gift of the Holy Spirit by reflecting on the Scriptures of the Pentecost Vigil every day of the week, with a moment of reflection from the Psalm of the Day and a Prayer for the day. The Pentecost Journey has activities for children with videos produced to speak to them about the Gift of the Holy Spirit.

  • June is the month of the Sacred Heart of Jesus! 

Calendar 

31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 9:30 AM
31May
31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 5:30 PM
07Jun
Sunday Mass Sunday, Jun 7 @ 9:30 AM
07Jun
Sunday Mass Sunday, Jun 7 @ 5:30 PM

 

The Holy Spirit brings the gift of Unity, Peace and Mission

 “Peace be with you! […] Peace be with you; as the Father has sent me, so I send you”
 pentecost giclee ebulletin rgb
In the Gospel narratives of these last weeks, Jesus speaks and teaches repeatedly about the advocate, the paraclete, the counselor – the Holy Spirit who will inspire you with the right words to speak, the right tone of voice, the right approach to a delicate situation.

 

For Pentecost, it may seem strange that the Gospel account is from John, in the week after the resurrection: Jesus appears to the apostles, breathes on them and says: “Peace be with you! [and then he says again, for emphasis],  “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent me, so I send you!” From some of the friends and mentors of St. Monica who are liturgical music composers, I would draw your attention to two beautiful compositions by David Haas and John Angotti - click links to enjoy!

 

The image at right is called Pentecost by John August Swanson. Mr. Swanson has said of the image: "In my image of PENTECOST, I see the Spirit of God, re-energizing all people and bringing us together to work for peace, to heal the Earth, and to honor the diversity of our life's journey.

 

This year, as we celebrate Pentecost, we have been given the gift of UNITY and PEACE by the Holy Spirit. "We have been given the gift of unity and peace by the Holy Spirit. In the colors of the Liturgy, Red is associated with two distinct types of feasts : Apostles and Martyrs, those who have died for their faith, and with feasts related to the Holy Spirit. On Sunday, wear red with us to celebrate Pentecost and tag your photo #StMonicaSpirit. Post pictures of your family, household, you wearing Pentecost Red and celebrate with us!

 

Dale Sieverding, Director of Worship

Highlights

  • Archbishop José H. Gomez dispenses all the Catholic faithful of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and all Catholics currently in the Archdiocese from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass until further notice. Furthermore, the public celebration of Mass continues to be suspended in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles until further notice. Click here to read the liturgical guidelines.
  • Meet us on the Duval Patio (virtual of course) after Sunday Mass for a cup of coffee and a doughnut.. We'll share 15–20 mins together as a large group and go into breakout rooms for smaller conversations. Register in advance, HERE.
  • It Is customary for the Church to keep special days of prayer in anticipation of major feast days. Pentecost traditionally had a Novena: 9 days of prayer between Ascension Thursday (the 40th day after Easter) to Pentecost (the 50th day after Easter). We have curated resources for adults and children to pray for the gift of the Holy Spirit by reflecting on the Scriptures of the Pentecost Vigil every day of the week, with a moment of reflection from the Psalm of the Day and a Prayer for the day. The Pentecost Journey has activities for children with videos produced to speak to them about the Gift of the Holy Spirit.

  • June is the month of the Sacred Heart of Jesus! 

Calendar 

31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 9:30 AM
31May
31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 5:30 PM
07Jun
Sunday Mass Sunday, Jun 7 @ 9:30 AM
07Jun
Sunday Mass Sunday, Jun 7 @ 5:30 PM

 

Easter Journey

Mission of Love

In Today’s Gospel we hear also, besides the gift of peace, Jesus “ breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit, whose sins you forgive, are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained’.”

 

Whenever you are in Rome and see a sculpture of St. Peter, the rock upon whom the Church was built, and the one to whom the forgiveness of sins was entrusted, he is always holding a large key, or pair of keys. In the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church, St. Peter was the one who holds the “keys to the gates of heaven.”

 

The Sacrament of Confession, as I detailed in my writing last Summer, and in a webinar in the Catholic Conversations Series, developed over a period of the first millennium of Christianity, into something like we know Confession to be today. For many, you have missed this sacrament during this time of the church buildings being closed and the sacraments suspended. Over the next few weeks, we will gradually begin to come out of our exile and the Sacraments will again be permitted to be celebrated, keeping in mind the needs of safety and social distance.

 

The core of the Sacrament of Reconciliation is here in this passage – Jesus gave them the Holy Spirit, and entrusted to them the forgiveness of sins. We hear that in the Prayer of Absolution:

 

God the Father of mercy, through the death and resurrection of his Son,

Has sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of Sins.

Through the ministry of the Church, may God grant you pardon and peace,

And I absolve you from your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son

And of the Holy Spirit

 

On the basis of this Scripture as well, just two weeks into our Stay at Home public health orders, on Friday evening, March 27, sitting alone in the vast St. Peter’s Square, the Holy Father, Pope Francis, the successor of St. Peter, granted to the Church an extraordinary gift in this difficult time – it was the gift of a blessing known as Urbi et Orbi. This blessing is traditionally only given when the Pope is elected, and on Christmas and Easter in the years of his pontificate. By calling on this tradition in a global pandemic, the Pope made this decision out of love for his flock and the entire human family. He spoke eloquently about the church being tossed about like a ship in the waves. And with this blessing, To the City and to the World, he granted a plenary indulgence.

 

I believe he also gave this give to the Church, because the Sacramental Confession became impossible to celebrate safely during the pandemic. If you recall, the Holy Father suggested to us in a homily that we in a quiet moment of prayer, we tell God our sins, list them or talk about them with God, just as we would with a confessor, make an Act of Contrition, and God will bring you and give you forgiveness.

 

Legend has it that Winston Churchill is said to have opined, “it would be a shame to waste a good crisis.” This moment has brought all of our worlds to a standstill – what will you take away from this extraordinary moment. Have you connected with old friends and family in a new way. Has your life (figuratively) been flashing before your eyes? Do you need to make a course correction, or go in a completely new direction? The Sacrament of Reconciliation offers us that opportunity, but so to, as we come out of our isolation and come to understand what the “new normal” of our lives will be – don’t forget to turn to God in asking forgiveness for past failings, and the Holy Spirit to guide you on the mission of love.

 

Prayer for Health Care Workers

A Prayer for Health Care Workers

in the Time of the Coronavirus Pandemic

 

Blessed Mary, mother of Jesus and our mother,

Comforter of the sick and protector of the endangered,

We beg your intercession at this time of worldwide illness

As together we pass through the dark valley of sickness and death.

Comfort the many who live in fear, give solace to those who face death,

Accompany the dying into the arms of your merciful Son, and

Console those who have lost a loved one.

Above all, bless the hands of those who care for the victims of this disease,

Reward the generosity of their commitment to those who suffer,

Strengthen their compassion as they sit at the bedside of those who are dying,

Protect them, their families and their loved ones from this disease, and

Welcome to heaven those who sacrificed their lives to heal others.

In your life you experienced the danger, the fear and the helplessness

That so many of us experience today.  Faith in your Son sustained you

And saw you through to the glory of the Resurrection.

May our doctors, nurses, health care providers, family members

And all who serve the victims of disease at this critical time

Know the gratitude of our hearts, the sustenance of our prayers,

And the strength and comfort of your presence.

May they not lose hope in the resurrection to come,

Both in this our time and in eternity.

We make this prayer through you to Jesus, your Son.

We live always in the presence of the Divine Trinity. Amen.

 

Prayer taken from The Order of Malta Prayer for Health Care Workers in the time of the Coronavirus Pandemic

 

Ask the Liturgist

  • What is the history of the rosary?

    Historians say the rosary was a prayer developed for the laity by or with St. Dominic in the 13th century. It was a prayer developed to provide a simple prayer, as the clergy and religious of the church prayed the Divine Office: Morning Prayer, Evening prayer, and other “hours” of the day up to 7 times daily. In monastic life, monks and nuns rise at 3 a.m. to begin the Liturgy of the Hours—and there are prayers appointed for dawn, mid-morning, noon, mid afternoon, evening, night in addition to the office of readings.

    Office of Readings: Lauds, Terce, Sext, None, Vespers, Compline

     

    The Liturgy of the Hours entailed praying the 150 psalms throughout these different “hours” of prayer during the week. At that time, the lay people had 150 “Hail Mary’s” in the traditional Rosary, with attention drawn to “mysteries” taken from the life of Christ. It is a meditative, repetitive prayer.

     

    There are many opportunities and ways to join with a community in praying the Rosary:

    Facebook Live with Fr. David & Fr. Vince
    St. Monica Monday evening Rosary: Megan Harrington organizer: email
    The USCCB provides a guide on How to Pray the Rosary.

     

  • What does it mean to pray “for the Intentions of the Holy Father?”
    It means to unite ourselves, with the people of God around the world to lift up in prayer, those people, categories of people, situations that the Holy Father invites us to pray together. Here are the formal intentions. In addition, the Holy Father has asked us to pray for the health care workers, first responders, those who are caring or the many ill, and for those who are sick, their families, and for those who have died from the pandemic—either from the Coronavirus itself or collateral death from no access to health care because of the pandemic.
  • How should I/our family prepare to celebrate Liturgy on Sundays?

    I was asked how I prepare for Sunday Liturgy now that we're all at home. Well, in addition to working with the Sunday Liturgy production team: I wake up, I shower, I dress in my Sunday best—with bowtie—and participate in the Liturgy from start to finish. I make my prayer of Spiritual Communion, I join in the song, I lift up those in need of prayer, I give thanks and praise to God. After Mass, I join Felipe Sanchez to host Coffee & Doughnuts on the Duval Patio (virtually).

     

    In speaking with a colleague about preparing for meetings and the Liturgy—the Church’s central act of Worship on Sundays—we find that when dressed our Sunday Best, it is a much different experience than if we stay in our sweats, or wear everyday clothes. Just like you dress for Sunday, dress yourselves and ask your family to “dress for Sunday!”

  • What is a novena?

    We pray the Mother’s Day Novena—but what exactly is it? The word novena means “nine days”—nine days of prayer focused on a specific intention or need. For our mothers and grandmothers, we remember them in a special way at the Masses for nine days beginning on Mother’s Day.

     

    The original Novena is the Pentecost Novena which was historically begun on Ascension Thursday followed by nine days of intense prayer by the entire Church to be ready to the receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit. This year, with focus, might we not benefit from an intense novena of prayer, asking that the Holy Spirit's seven gifts would come down upon each of us, our families, our church, and our community to inspire us and guide us as we forge ahead in living our lives, graced from God? More in the coming weeks.

Liturgy of the Hours

The Prayer of the Church

The Church offers many different types of prayer: liturgical prayer, devotional prayer, meditative prayer, personal piety devotions.

 

The Liturgy of the Hours is one of the official Liturgies of the Church and consists in Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer daily – centered on praying the Psalms, hearing a short word of another Scripture passage, some intercessions for the needs of the Church, our local needs, and needs of the world, the Canticle of Mary (The Magnificat), The Lord’s Prayer and conclusion. What is the benefit?

Sometimes when we don’t have the words to pray, or can’t find the words we need to express to God our sorrow, rage, anger, love, thanks, joy, sadness, overwhelming gratitude, love or love lost … the Psalms can help us find the visceral language with which we can be Honest To God: series of lectures last year on the Psalms provided our community with more background on their composition, their purpose, their use throughout the Church’s history.

 

The early Christian Church prayed the Psalms, as they prayed the prayers that Jesus prayed and knew well as a good Jew. On the Cross, the words of Psalm 22 were on his lips, My God, My God, why have you forsaken me. In the hearts and minds of the early Christians, these were the songs of Israel that they knew and continued to pray. And in another place, Jesus is the stone which the builders rejected, now become the cornerstone/keystone.

 

The praying of the Psalms – singing them --  developed into a ritual of prayer, morning, evening and used at the Eucharistic celebrations and thus became the backbone of the Church’s Liturgical Prayer.

 

The Liturgical Press as been gracious to offer the resource Give Us This Day to the Church during this pandemic as a free, downloadable resource. It is also available on an app for your phone, so you could have it available wherever you are and have time to pray. Have a look today, and let this become part of YOUR ritual of daily prayer, when you do not have the words to speak.

 

Sacraments

Baptism

There will be no baptisms celebrated at this time, except in the cases of emergency. Once restrictions have been lifted, baptisms may resume. However, Baptism Preparation Classes will still be provided with accomodation. 

Saint Monica will temporarily offer an online baptism program for parents and godparents to comply with the LA County Safer-at-Home Restrictions.

Click here for more information: Baptism Information

Weddings

At this time, priests are available to begin the marriage preparation discussions. Weddings will consist of a priest, the couple and two witnesses only.
Our Marriage Information Night, scheduled for April 22, 2020 will be held via Zoom Conference.
You must pre-register for the event.

For more information: Sacrament of Marriage Information

Confessions

St. Monica is complying with LA County Safer-At-Home Restrictions. At this time, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has temporarily suspended the celebration of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. There will be no confessions offered until the restrictions have been lifted. (Updated 3/24/20)

Anointing of the Sick

In cases of extreme emergency, priests are available to offer last rites, Viaticum and Anointing of the Sick. Contact the Parish Office at (310) 566-1500.

 

Prayer resources are available for praying with those who are ill and those who are near death. The Commendation of the Dying and other prayers for those who are serious ill can be found here:

 

Praying Together, Praying Apart: At Home Prayers for Times of Healing, Illness and Death. (Liturgical Press)

A resource put together as a gift to our Church for moments of prayer toward the end of life, especially useful for us as we accompany a loved one who may be in hospice, or near death when a priest cannot come to celebrate the Anointing of the sick.

Funerals

Funerals may only be celebrated with the Rite of Committal, more commonly known as the gravesite service. Memorial Masses may be celebrated later in the year. Please call (310) 566-1520 or  for more information.

Sacramental Records

Saint Monica cannot complete sacramental records requests at this time. For urgent matters, contact

 

Spiritual Communion

Spiritual Communion

Communion with God is our ultimate goal in life – with prayer, celebration of the Liturgy, study and meditation on Scripture, retreats and spiritual growth opportunities. We believe that Christ is present in bread and wine, made Body and Blood of Christ through the Eucharistic Prayer of the Community, lead by the presider (priest or bishop) acting in persona Christi (in the person of Christ). We believe that our Communion with God through the Eucharist is so powerful and intimate that we believe we consume the Body and Blood of Christ by eating and drinking as the Lord commanded.

 

During this time when we are unable to receive the Eucharist physically, Pope Francis invites us to make a Spiritual Communion – that is to invite Christ in to our hearts, and ask that Christ come close to us, and that we come close to Christ. We do this in moments of prayer following the Communion Rite at Mass, with the following prayer:

 

 

My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there, and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

 

We also join ourselves to the Body of Christ, and Pope Francis invites us specifically to join ourselves with the Body of Christ suffering the most from the Coronavirus epidemic – those afflicted, those who have lost their lives, the doctors, nurses and entire medical community caring for patients. St. Paul writes: When one member of the Body of Christ suffers, the entire Body suffers. We are one Body, one Spirit in Christ.

 

Additional Resources

Here are some resources to understand better the concept of Spiritual Communion and the importance of inviting Christ into your heart and soul.

 

Pope Francis on Spiritual Communion:

https://youtu.be/5LNjJaWuidw

 

A more detailed explanation of Spiritual Communion:

https://angelusnews.com/faith/the-secret-to-understanding-spiritual-communion-in-a-time-of-video-masses/

 

Urbi Et Orbi:

https://stmonica.net/church-announcements/885-pope-grants-extraordinary-blessing

The blessing offered to us by Pope Francis a few weeks ago, is the Urbi et orbi blessing to the City of Rome and to the World offered all of us listening the Plenary Indulgence.

Good Reads

From time to time, people will ask what I am reading—what gives me inspiration, fills me with the presence of God, guides my Camino. The following are a few books that I am currently reading or using in ministry.

 

Praying Together, Praying Apart: At Home Prayers for Times of Healing, Illness and Death. (Liturgical Press)

A resource put together as a gift to our Church for moments of prayer toward the end of life, especially useful for us as we accompany a loved one who may be in hospice, or near death when a priest cannot come to celebrate the Anointing of the sick.

  • Part 1: Prayers of Comfort, Hope and Healing
  • Part 2: Lucernarium for Healing
  • Part 3: Rosary For Healing with Luke the Evangelist
  • Part 3: At-Home Service of Prayer when someone has Died

 

Strong in the Face of Tribulation: The Church in Communion – A Support in Time of Trial.  

https://www.vaticannews.va/content/dam/lev/forti-nella-tribolazione/pdf/eng/strong-in-tribulation.-20042020.pdf

This is a book (free digital download) just released by the Vatican Library and the Dicastery for Communication – it is a collection of Pope Francis’ homilies, prayers and messages to the people of Italy, and the entire world during this time of the pandemic IT offers prayers that can be lead and said by lay people for the sick and suffering.

  

Give us this Day – Daily Morning and Evening Prayer and the readings for every day Mass

https://giveusthisday.org/digital

This excellent resource is being offered as a free digital download for anyone during the months of April and May, published by The Liturgical Press at Collegeville, MN. I highly recommend this as a prayer companion, not just for this time of the pandemic but to give structure to a life of prayer. Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer with the Psalms are the “hinges of the day” according to the Liturgical documents. Praying with the Psalms gives us a rhythm, and puts us in contact with some of the most salient poetic and sung scripture texts composed to help the people of Israel speak to God in prayer – there are Psalms of praise, thanksgiving, lament, fear, anger, distress, in moments of great joy and moments of great sorrow. 

 

It may be praying with the Psalms during these days would help you through this moment of great upheaval. It is available as a download to your mobile device or computer and is also available as an app for the iPhone and Android platforms.

  

The Work of Your Hands: Prayers for ordinary and extraordinary moments of Grace

by Diana Macalintal

This is a great collection of inspired prayers that Diana, a good friend, wrote and I have used them to open meetings, close meetings or just begin the day.

 

Sauntering through Scripture: A book of Reflections

by Sr. Genevieve Glen, OSB

Short 2 page reflections on a variety of well-known and oft used Scripture texts.

 

Praying our Experiences: An Invitation to Open Our Lives to God

by Joseph F Schmidt, FSC (Christian Brother)

This one was assigned to me be my Spiritual Director, but I have to say—the first couple meetings after he gave it I had to confess that the dog (Sparta) ate my homework. I just couldn’t find the time to read. The good thing about this book is that it turns our notion of prayer around, to see that the moments of our lives, are different kinds of prayer. And Spirituality, is no great secret, it is how you live your life in relationship to others, yourself and to God.


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Mass

Mon - Fri:  6:30a, 8:00a, 12:10p

Saturday:  8:00a, 5:30p

Sunday:  7:30a, 9:30a, 11:30a

                1:15p, 5:30p, 7:30p

 

Confession

Mon - Fri:  5:30-6:00p

Sat:  4:30-5:00p

31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 9:30 AM
31May
31May
Sunday Mass Sunday, May 31 @ 5:30 PM
31May
YMA Get Acquainted Dinner Sunday, May 31 @ 7:00 PM
01Jun
TTF Drop-In Lounge Monday, Jun 1 @ 7:00 AM

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