Good News to Share

The Church of St. Luke The Church of St. Luke
Dear STL Family,
Are you ready for Thanksgiving Day? Driving around town, I'm already seeing businesses and homes decorated for the Christmas season. What's that about? Are folks anxious to move through or bypass Thanksgiving and go straight into Christmas? I look forward to this time to "chill out" and enjoy family traditions. 
I love this time of year because it reminds us that we are called to be missionaries. We are given the opportunity to focus on the gifts and blessings we have already received, to gather around the table naming those blessings with our loved ones, to reach out and share meals with those who have been forgotten or experience loneliness, and through our actions, be Christ to all we encounter. 
As for me, I have so much to be thankful for! I attended a special Mass yesterday for our Knights of Columbus deceased members. It's not a club we widows want to be in, but what an amazing experience -- being surrounded by "Catholic men who lead, serve, and protect, who share a desire to be better husbands, fathers, sons, neighbors, role models, and who put charity and community first." My experience of the entire liturgy and my faith community had an ethereal quality about it. I actually sensed Frank's spirit among us. Thank you, Knights, for the love and support you give, and thank you, God, for the gift of our STL family.
I later attended a celebration of Vietnamese martyrs held at Good Shepherd parish. Here again, being surrounded by over 1,200 Catholics worshipping together in prayer and song, affirmed my faith in God and in humanity. I had a few moments with Bishop Mc Elroy, who presided at Mass. I assured him that the community of St. Luke is praying for him and his medical team. He expressed words of sincere gratitude and is optimistic about being present to dedicate our new chapel after the first of the year. 
Now back to this time of year, it's so easy to get caught up in the busyness of the holiday season. During this Advent season, my adult children, Andrea, Jonathan, and I are recommitting ourselves to intentionally slow down, spend more time in prayer, less money on "stuff", be less demanding of ourselves, and be more Christlike not necessarily by our words, but by our actions.
So this Thanksgiving, I offer my joy and hope for all of you. May God bless you as you have so blessed me. To add my son's favorite Thanksgiving wish, "Eat a turkey. Don't be a turkey."
With a very grateful heart,
Jane A.
p.s. I just want to share the good news that Bishop McElroy's heart surgery was successful. Praise God!
Sent by Jane Alfano