This Week in Prayer, Service & Community - April 13, 2018


Dear All: 


Christ’s Peace!


PREPARE TO LAUGH (AND EAT)! COMEDY NIGHT IS A WEEK AWAY! Our Third Annual Comedy Night, including dinner, will overrun the Parish Hall on Saturday, April 21. You can buy tickets (a) through the parish webpage by clicking on the Comedy Night banner, (b) over the phone by calling the office or (c) in the Gathering Space this weekend. We sell tickets until Tuesday at 10 pm. Let the laughs begin! (NB – All parishioners and friends over the age of 18 are encouraged to attend.)

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  • The Triduum – Was there one moment in Holy Week that stands out for you as particularly grace-filled? The Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday was a time of extraordinary grace for me. What a rare privilege it was to witness people of every description express devotion to our crucified Christ. That moment made it very easy to believe anew that Jesus craves connection with you. So what about you? 

  • Sacrament Season – As we move from Easter toward Pentecost, preparations for Confirmation (Thursday, April 26) and First Communions(May 6 and May 20) move into high gear. Please say an extra prayer for all candidates for both sacraments – who remind us that the Church is alive and well in Hillsborough.

  • Meeting Christ in Prayer — Blessings for all the Meeting Christ groups that will continue to meet. The men’s group (late Monday) is meeting this Mondayat 7:30 in the hospitality room to chart the way forward. If you were part of that group or of Cornerstone, feel free to join us.

  • Sunday’s Homily – “Jesus’ Names, Part I: Lord”

  • To listen to Sunday’s homily, click here. 

  • To read a summary of it, go to the bottom of this page.



  • Hello new parishioners! May God use you to bless the parishioners of longstanding – and vice versa. We welcome: 

    • William and Carol Cwieka; 

    • Johnathan and Kimberly Garcia and their son Nolan; 

    • Keith and Jill Giunta and their son Jacob; 

    • Ted and Joanne Givand; 

    • Chad and Alyssa Macones and their children Josephine, Juliette, and Joshua; 

    • Chuck and Betsy Miller and their children Caitlyn and Jonathan; 

    • Chris Pagneth; 

    • John and Kim Taccarino and their daughter Olivia, and; 

    • Michael and Maggie Valenzano and their daughter Olivia.

  • Hope to see you at Comedy Night! (See above.)

  • If you work with youth or vulnerable adults at the church (or want to) then you will need to go through the Virtus: Protecting God's Childrencertification. To register for the May 2 session being held at St. Joe's click this link

  • Our Spring Cleanup Morning is Saturday, April 28. Pictures go on display this weekend – to show you the jobs that need to be done that day. The labors start right after the 8:35 Mass and should take only an hour or two. Check out the photos in the Gathering Space to see which job is calling your name!


  • Many many cheers for our the members of our Bluestorm basketball program who delivered dozens of Easter baskets to the homebound and to residents of local nursing homes. The Easter baskets were a smash hit. The athletes collected donations for the baskets in January and February, assembled the baskets in March and delivered them on Easter Sunday. Their efforts brought great happiness to many people. Bravo!

  • Our parish is hosting the Interfaith Hospitality Network the week of May 6. The ministry has recently made great strides in automating the signup sheets for the dozens of people required to make the week work. Just a gentle reminder – if you haven’t already signed up, please do so soon. It makes the planning that much easier for the planners.

  • Members of our Youth Group will be making their 30 Hour Famine in late April. Take a card from the bulletin board on the way into chuch for ideas on how you can support the youth.

Lent, the Triduum and Easter were greatly inspired days here at St. Joe’s. You, our dedicated parishioners, were the delivery-people for God’s grace. To those who went way above and beyond, may God bless your Easter season with a profound appreciation of the Resurrection’s implications.


Fr Hank 


Summary of this Week’s Homily:


Jesus’ Names, Part I: “Lord”


Christ’s Resurrection changed everything. It changed the way the disciples worked and lived together. It changed their relationships with the local authorities. It changed countless aspects of their lives, including the way they referred to Jesus and the way they addressed him. Because of the Resurrection, it made sense to call Jesus “Lord.”


The word “Lord” is used throughout the Old Testament. It is frequently presented as “Lord,” and at other times as “Lord.” (The distinction is important but is beyond this week’s focus.) When used in reference to Jesus it connotes “the one around whom I will organize my life; the one to whom I will always strive to say ‘yes,’ the one to whom I want to surrender my will.”


Sunday’s passage from Acts of the Apostles describes a community of “one heart and one mind.” The passage also reports that community members sold all they had and used it to support the early church. Both the oneness and the generosity were tall orders. Why did they satisfy them? Because, as the passage indicates, they called Jesus “Lord” and labored to do all that He requested.


 Sunday’s gospel depicts Saint Thomas’ great profession of faith, “My Lord and my God.” Thomas’ encounter with the Risen Christ caused him to call Jesus “Lord.” That, in turn, meant that Thomas would forever organize his life, even more profoundly, around Jesus and would always strive to say “yes” to Jesus.


Perhaps a challenge for us is to recognize those parts of our lives in which we want Jesus to be Lord and those in which we are keeping Him out. What about our financial lives? Our recreational and athletic lives? Our social lives? Our family and community lives”? 


What about you? What are some of the areas in life in which you truly strive to treat Him as Lord and let His hopes dominate your choices? And what is a part of life where you maybe aren’t all that anxious to get His input, perhaps fearing that doing so would reduce the quality of life? We all have next steps to make in terms of knowing, wanting and doing what He wants, in terms of treating Him as Lord. And we can step forward confident that He only asks us to take the steps that draw us closer to Him, draw us further into His peace, renew the face of the earth, and glorify God.