Update on the Restoration

Just to keep you informed about our Building Fund and Restoration, I wanted to give you a few updates. Many have noticed the black devices on the wall.  They are part of a large-scale analysis of why the plaster is failing.  They are networked to a central server to help the contractor figure out what is causing the failures.  They were installed in February, and they were supposed to have sufficient data by the end of June.  The next step is an analysis of the data and the recommendation of a way forward.  The contractor, the architect, and/or the subcontractor are all on the hook for this.  I was in contact with them this week. Many have also inquired about the broken kneelers. Our normal handyman, Wilton, doesn’t have the expertise to do this.  But we have hired a carpenter to … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – July 5, 2020

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.” (Mt 11:28-30) “Come to me,” the Lord asks us in today’s Gospel.  The word used for “come” in the original Greek is “?????” – pronounced “dyoo-teh.”  It’s a command, and it’s directed to the entire group to whom Jesus is speaking.  The same word is used by Jesus a number of times in the New Testament, speaking to a past event, a present event and a future event. In the past event, Jesus first used the word: “Come, after me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Mk 1:17).  In the future event, Jesus gives us the parable of the talents, and uses the word as … [Read more...]

Feast of St. Henry Mass

Saturday, July 11, 2020 VIGIL MASS MOVED TO ST. HENRY CHURCH! Next Saturday at 4:00pm, there will be the annual St. Henry Feast Day Mass at St Henry Church, followed by a small reception at Grits Bar, located at 530 Lyons Street.  If you went to St. Henry’s School, attended Mass at St. Henry, are named Henry, been to Henry’s bar, or have ever met anyone named Henry, you are invited! St. Henry (6 May 973 – 13 July 1024) was the fifth and last Holy Roman Emperor of the Ottonian dynasty, from his coronation in Rome in 1014 until his death a decade later.  He was crowned King of Germany in 1002 and King of Italy in 1004. He is the only German king to have been canonized. Henry was the son of Henry, Duke of Bavaria. As his father was in rebellion against two previous emperors, he was … [Read more...]

Special Announcement

Now that the “stay home” orders have been lifted for the State of Louisiana and the City of New Orleans, we are resuming public Masses. St Stephen Church will look a bit different from the last time you saw it because we are limited in how many people can attend Mass. What that means is that two-thirds of the pews have been “roped off,” so that you can stay 6 feet away from the persons in the pew in front of and behind you. It will be your responsibility to maintain that same distance from those who are in the same pew as you. We are asking singles to please use the side aisles to allow groups of related people to use the main, larger pews. To allow the distribution of Holy Communion to be done in a safe manner, we will only have two ministers distributing. One will be in the normal … [Read more...]

What do we mean by religious liberty?

Religious liberty is the first liberty granted to us by God and protected in the First Amendment to our Constitution. It includes more than our ability to go to Mass on Sunday or pray the Rosary at home. It also encompasses our ability to contribute freely to the common good of all Americans. Prayer for the Protection of Religious Libery Almighty God, Father of all nations, for freedom you have set us free in Christ Jesus (Gal 5:1). We praise and bless you for the gift of religious liberty,  the foundation of human rights, justice and the common good. Grant to our leaders the wisdom to protect  and promote our liberties. By your grace may we have the courage to defend them,  for ourselves and for all those who live in this blessed land. We ask this through the intercession of Mary … [Read more...]

The Immaculate Heart of Mary – June 20, 2020

The Blessed Mother was a true contemplative. Three times in Sacred Scripture we hear about Mary reflecting on events in her life. The first time was at the time of the Annunciation when the Angel Gabriel greeted her with the title “full of grace.” Mary then “pondered what sort of greeting this might be.” (Lk 1:29). Later, after the birth of Jesus, the appearance of the angels and the visit of the shepherds, Mary “kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart.” (Lk 2:19). Then, after Jesus was found in the temple and told Mary, “Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house.” (Lk. 2:49), Mary again “kept all these things in her heart.” (Lk 2:51). Just as devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is a special form of devotion to the Person of Jesus, so the devotion to the … [Read more...]

Parishioner Spotlight Interview

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Prayers to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Friday, June 19, 2020 Margaret Alacoque was born in Burgundy, France on 22 July, 1647. From her early childhood Margaret showed intense love for the Blessed Sacrament, and preferred silence and prayer to childish amusements. During her time before the Blessed Sacrament, Christ even made Himself visually apparent to her. This did not surprise her, because she thought others had the same Divine assistance! Although tempted by the luxuries and distractions of the world, Margaret Mary entered the Visitation Convent in 1572, where her visions became known. Because of her perceived “special status,” she was subjected to many trials to prove her vocation. She showed obedience, humility, and invariable charity towards those who persecuted her. Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish a … [Read more...]

From the Pastor – June 14, 2020

Jesus said to the Jewish crowds: "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.". (Jn 6:51) Today’s Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ  (“Corpus Christi” in Latin) is a fairly recent addition to the Church calendar, dating from only the 13th century.  We know that the Body and Blood of Christ are present at every Mass, but this special feast to honor the Body and Blood of Christ owes its existence to the petitions of a Belgium nun named Juliana of Liège from the 13th century. From a young age, Juliana had a great love for the Blessed Sacrament and longed for a special feast in its honor.  Her desire was increased by a vision she had of the Church under the … [Read more...]

Corpus Christi Mass and Eucharistic Procession

Sunday, June 14, 2020 Next Sunday we will have our annual Eucharistic Procession to show our belief in the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Most Blessed Sacrament. … [Read more...]