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All of us at Sacred Heart Parish wish you and your family a Happy Independence Day. May we never take for granted the freedoms won and fought for by our Founding Fathers and those who have gone before us. Thank you to the U.S. military, police, fire, and emergency rescue workers for their service to our state and nation. God bless America!   Fr. Atwood

Father Atwood celebrates his Silver Jubilee on Sunday, June 2. There will be an anniversary Mass at 4 p.m. on the 2nd, at Immaculate Conception in Fairbank. A light reception follows Mass. There will be a reception after 4:30 Mass Saturday evening, June 1, at Sacred Heart. Come and join Father Atwood is marking this significant milestone in his priestly ministry. 

The Ascension of the Lord has been transferred from today to Sunday, June 2. This enables greater participation by the faithful. See an explanation of this change on Father Atwood's blog, "Four Minutes with Father." 

Memorial Day Mass will be celebrated at 9 a.m. Monday, May 27. There is a Memorial Day service at Woodlawn Cemetery in Oelwein at 10 a.m. Featured speaker is Lt. Col. Tony Bradley, son of Steve and Sandy Bradley. Come out and support our veterans, both living and deceased. Please remember our deceased veterans in your rosary and other prayers this month. 

Easter begins tonight at 8:30 with the celebration of the Easter Vigil. This four-part liturgy is the highlight of the liturgical year. We will light the Easter Candle, hear readings about baptism and resurrection, welcome three new members, and celebrate Eucharist. Please join us at 8:30 for this beautiful sacred liturgy. Easter Sunday Masses are at 8:30 in Fairbank and 10:30 in Oelwein. 

Holy Thursday is the beginning of the Paschal Triduum, three of the holiest days of the liturgical year. On this day, the Church commemorates the institution of the Eucharist, Holy Orders, and the Lord's model of charity. We gather to listen to God's Word, receive the Eucharist, and adore the Lord. Following the prayer after Communion, the Blessed Sacrament is incensed and taken in procession to a place of repose. Why this procession? To represent the Lord being taken/arrested from His Apostles following the Passover celebration (see Matt. 26: 47-56). We then spend time in quiet prayer before the reposed Sacrament. In some places, the priest listens to confessions at this time. It is a perfect opportunity to make one's annual Confession. Holy Thursday Mass will be celebrated at Immaculate Conception (Fairbank) at 7:00 p.m. Please join us for the celebration of these holy sacraments. 

Parishioners who wish to offer prayers for Michael McDonough are invited to church tomorrow. The Sacred Heart students will have stations at 2:15, to which all are invited, and all are invited to come and pray around 2:45. Please use the access to our church to offer prayers in front of the Blessed Sacrament for Michael. 

Individual Confessions are being heard this week in the following places and times:

 

Monday, April 15 --- Immaculate Conception (Fairbank)  7-8 p.m. 

Wednesday, April 17 --- Sacred Heart (Oelwein) 6-7 p.m. 

Thursday, April 18 --- Immaculate Conception(Fairbank) 8 p.m. until all are heard

Friday, April 19 --- Immaculate Conception (Fairbank) 1 p.m. until all are heard

                           Sacred Heart (Oelwein) 7 p.m. until all are heard

Saturday, April 20 --- Sacred Heart (Oelwein) 11-Noon (last chance) 

Lent is a season of extras, including additional Masses, Confession times, and Stations of the Cross. Join us at Sacred Heart every Friday during Lent at 5:30 for Mass and Stations of the Cross. Come and experience the power of God's grace in this holy season. 

The newly formed Sacred Heart Alumni and Friends Association is seeking addresses of alumni and others who wish to support our school financially. We would like to send regular updates on the school and receive support. If you wish to provide an address, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  

Sacred Heart will have First Friday Mass and Devotions at 8:45 on April 5. Immaculate Conception will have First Saturday Mass and Devotions at 8:00 on April 6. Come and experience the power of these traditional devotional practices. 

Marriage on Fire:

The next Marriage on Fire presentation will take place on Thursday, April 4 in the Pastoral Center. We will discuss Pope Pius XI's encyclical Casti Canubbi (On Christian Marriage). All are welcome and encouraged to attend and learn the beautiful truths of the Church's vision of marriage. 

 

Hope to see you there!

Students attending NCYC will be selling coffee mugs with the Sacred Heart logo to raise money for their trip

The Sign of Peace which we exchange at Saturday/Sunday Mass, is an expression of fellowship and charity before the community receives Holy Communion. This is an optional part of the Mass. With the flu season approaching, many parishes choose to suspend the Sign of Peace. This is a prudent precaution against spreading germs. I agree with this policy, and so, beginning the first Sunday of Advent we will suspend the Sign of Peace at all Masses. We will resume the sign at Easter. While some may be disappointed at the loss of this fellowship, there are many ways to greet one another, and this is an opportunity to exercise them.