The Conway Communique, Feb. 23

Readers from St. Richard will remember that my weekly email to the parish was called the Conway Communique, and came out (eventually) every Friday morning. It had a little meditation in it and then just a quick rundown of what was happening that weekend.

I wasn’t able to keep that going once I left, but now that I’m in charge again, it’s back…on a new day…with a generic name. (For now. I might fix one or both of those.)

Anyway, I reckon I might as well get back into posting them to the blog as well, so here we go…

“Eighty and six years have I served Him, and He never did me any injury: how then can I blaspheme my King and my Savior? … Hear me declare with boldness, I am a Christian.”

With these words and other similar sentiments, Saint Polycarp, whom the Church commemorates today, went to his martyrdom in the year 155 AD. Yet as compelling as the account of his martyrdom is (and it’s a powerful story), it’s not what he’s most famous for.  The fact that he was a disciple of and ordained to the priesthood by the Apostle John is also an intriguing piece of his story, but even that isn’t important.  What really matters is what Polycarp taught – and still teaches. As he wrote in his Letter to the Philippians: “Stand fast, therefore, in these things [the virtues], and follow the example of the Lord, being firm and unchangeable in the faith, loving the brotherhood, and being attached to one another, joined together in the truth, exhibiting the meekness of the Lord in your [dealings] with one another, and despising no one.  When you can do good, defer it not.”

Just a few updates to bring to your attention:

  1. I apologize for the lack of bulletins this past weekend. It seems FedEx was dealing with some major operational disruptions that delayed delivery.  That being said, the bulletins did eventually arrive…at about 11:00 on Monday.

We are in the process of terminating our relationship with the current bulletin company and moving to one that seems better able to manage their operations.

  • As previously announced, this weekend we will finally be able to roll back some of the COVID restrictions that have been in place. Regardless, we still encourage masks, and we will continue to have a section of seating where masks are required.
  • This weekend we officially kick off the 2022 Parish Share Campaign. By now you’ve received the official mailing from the Diocese and have had a chance to start to pray on how you can support our parish.  Our assessment this year is the manageable sum of $193,967.
  • Anointing of the Sick will be celebrated after the 11:00 and 11:30 AM Masses this weekend.
  • Volunteers are needed to work the parish fish fry. Be sure to visit
  • Lent begins next weekend. Check out our website, Facebook page, and (hopefully) bulletin for a rundown of all the events we have planned.

Have a great rest of your week! See you Sunday!

Fr. Mike

Oremus pro invicem!

February 2: The Presentation of the Lord

Somehow last Sunday’s Mass didn’t make it to our Youtube channel, so I couldn’t share it…but that’s just as well, because it was more a Catholic Schools Week homily than it was me digging into the Scriptures. But our Mass from this past Wednesday, the Feast of the Presentation, somehow did make it to YouTube, so I guess I’ll share that.

No guarantees about this Sunday. I’ll see what I can do.

Also, programming alert: I’ll be at St. Richard Church of Ss. Martha & Mary Parish this Sunday at 5 PM, so my thousands hundreds dozens few followers from that area can join me.

December 5, 2021: 2nd Sunday of Advent

The deacons preached this weekend, so I had a little bit of a break, which is nice… but I still came up with a little something to say. Meant to post this right after Mass, but I got called to one of the hospitals, and that comes first. I don’t think it’s any worse for the wear being a few hours late. I mean, at least I got something posted this week, right?

Readings for this week can be found here.

Some Stuff Surrounding (p)Salms

I’m awfully apologetic for the author’s audacity to use an alliterative title.

Ok, ok, I’ll stop, I promise.

Anyway, some time back, I was asked to return to Ss. Martha & Mary Parish and give a talk as part of their Upper Room program. The program is their way of doing faith formation for 7th and 8th grade students to help prepare them for Confirmation, but also to help transition them from a traditional classroom model of faith formation into more of a youth group model. The idea behind it is that it gets them ready and engaged to be part of the youth group when the time comes, and if we can keep them active in youth group, we keep them active in the church, and we form them as better Catholics.

The topic I was given was: The Psalms: Who, What, Why, When & Where? I may or may not have actually answered all of those questions, but I certainly did talk long enough. I’ll leave it here for you to enjoy.

November 21: Christ the King

Perhaps the most frustrating thing about my move has been that my day off has changed. it only moved from Wednesday to Thursday, but that’s enough to throw off my weekly routine. Now that I see that in writing, that seems to be a fairly ridiculous statement. But it has disrupted my routine, and what’s suffering lately is my homily preparation. I feel like I’m rushing it and I’ve not been pleased with the results lately (not that I ever am, of course.) This weekend was no exception. I had an idea worked out, more or less, in my head, and ran with it on Saturday night. It was ok, I suppose; no one walked out and no one complained about it after, but it just didn’t feel right. I tried again with it at the early Mass Sunday morning; that was even worse. (I was also in a terrible mood Sunday morning, so that could have something to do with it.) I retreated to my office between Masses, made a cup of coffee, and decided to throw out what I had and start over. And I think it went…better. If I had more time to work with this one, it could have been something. Anyway, the Gospel starts somewhere around the 12 minute mark, I think. Enjoy.