Hello October and Welcome Back

Welcome back home, Fr. Ron!
We missed you!
 You are always in our prayers!
Dear STL Family,
 
The season of Fall is officially here, but I'm not seeing it in the trees or leaves on the ground where I traditionally see the season colors. But I know it's here as I walk by the front landscape of neighbors' homes decorated with pumpkins, wreaths, autumn signs, and lots of spiderwebs.
 
We know this pandemic has weaved its own cobweb of spiders in our lives. In my conversations with several of you, I only get a brief glimpse of hope and positivity in the midst of greater frustration and negativity. It's been six months now which is longer than I envisioned when I heard about the need for a 'short-term' plan -- "It's only a matter of time till we see the STL families come back." Well, sadly our parish is still hurting. Much of this I know has to do with the broader cultural issues, and whether we feel safe venturing outside of our homes into crowd gatherings. 
 
My son, Jonathan, and I watch the televised SD Padres games and tune in to the post-game interviews. Major league baseball fans are saying that "...only a small minority contemplate going to ballparks in the near future, with the rest content to watch the game on television." I still can't get over the weirdness of seeing cardboard cutouts in the stands, but I get it. I miss so many of you at Mass and joke about putting cardboard cutouts in the pews you normally occupied pre-COVID time. Ok, I know that sounds weird, but I do miss your smiling faces.
 
The same is happening in our church life, as many of us have adapted to the new Zoom age and gathering virtually in the comfort of our homes. It clearly has its advantages. This very weekend our hybrid of online/onsite Faith Formation program begins and we'll continue other parish group meetings using video-conferencing and social media. It's not the ideal face-to-face community, but it is still community. Please continue to hang in there with us! We'd love to hear your ideas and feedback.
Here's some good news...
Live-stream is back! A huge THANK YOU to DAVE CONDIT for graciously volunteering to live-stream our 5:00 pm Mass. He will be trained this weekend. Anyone else interested in sharing this role? Please let me know.
More good news...
A few additional volunteers will be serving on our Pastoral Care Team to bring Eucharist to our homebound parishioners. They will be trained as well. We'll introduce them to you very soon. I invite more of you to consider joining this awesome team.
One final note ~ Have we told you lately how much we care about you? We truly do! More importantly, do you know how much Our Lord cares about you? 
Brothers and sisters:
Have no anxiety at all but in everything,
by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,
make your requests known to God.
Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding
will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus...
Finally, brothers and sisters,
whatever is true, whatever is honorable,
whatever is just, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious,
if there is any excellence
and if there is anything worthy of praise,
think about these things.
Keep on doing what you have learned and received
and heard and seen in me.
Then the God of peace will be with you.
                                                     Phil 4:6-9   
 
With a very grateful heart,
 
Jane
 
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Sent by Jane Alfano

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