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January 7, 2021
 
As a parish staff, we want to acknowledge the pain that many have experienced related to the events at the U.S. Capitol building on Wednesday. While our YouTube Masses were filmed before the events, we will be bringing all of the thoughts and prayers of our hearts and minds to this weekend’s Masses as we discern together how to live our faith as members of the Body of Christ. May we each discover the courage and wisdom we need to take concrete actions that uphold the dignity of all human life and make real the responsibilities we have for the common good of our nation and our world.

We also share with you the prayer that was offered by the chaplain of the U.S. Senate, immediately following Wednesday’s events:

Lord of our lives and sovereign of our beloved nation, we deplore the desecration of the United States Capitol building, the shedding of innocent blood, the loss of life, and the quagmire of dysfunction that threaten our democracy. These tragedies have reminded us that words matter, and that the power of life and death is in the tongue. We have been warned that eternal vigilance continues to be freedom’s price. Lord, you have helped us remember that we need to see in each other a common humanity that reflects your image. You have strengthened our resolve to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies domestic as well as foreign. Use us to bring healing and unity to our hurting and divided nation and world. Thank you for what you have blessed our lawmakers to accomplish in spite of threats to liberty. Bless and keep us. Drive from us all wrong desires. Incline our hearts to do your will and guide our feet on the path of peace. And God, bless America. We pray in your sovereign name, Amen.
Dr. Barry Black
U.S. Senate Chaplain
January 7, 2021
Dear Friends,
 
I hope you are well and that the peace of the child Jesus filled your homes in these days of the Christmas season. This Sunday we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord, which marks the end of the Christmas season and the return to Ordinary Time (Packers colors at Mass, just in time for the playoffs!!). In the stillness of winter we have contemplated Jesus’ infancy and we now turn to follow Him as He begins His public ministry. With this in mind, I would like to offer a few thoughts for your weekend.
 
First, a sincere word of thanks to all of those who made our Christmas celebrations possible! We are so grateful for our Liturgists, musicians, sacristans, lectors, and ushers who assisted with our 17 Christmas Masses. Thank you as well to all those who helped to decorate the churches! Though our liturgies were marked by a certain simplicity this year, there was still a great depth and beauty in our prayer. Our staff member Theresa Griesel has worked tirelessly to oversee our online communication efforts and we are grateful for her help in coordinating the ticketing system. A special thanks as well to Chad Griesel our Pastoral Associate for all of his efforts in organizing our ministers and the registration process. And thank you for the Christmas cards that a number of parishioners have sent to Fr. Tim and me – your kindness means more than you know.
 
Second, I am pleased to announce that my assignment as shared associate pastor for our Family of Four Parishes has been renewed for an additional year! I am grateful that I will remain here until at least the summer of 2022. It has been such a privilege to work with our wonderful staff and to minister to such generous and faithful people. Thanks for your prayers, support, and encouragement along the way and I look forward to continuing to serve in this little part of the Kingdom!
 
Video Mass for Sunday, January 10th. Here is the recorded Mass for this upcoming Sunday (Feast of the Baptism of the Lord). We provide a worship aid to help you better enter into the prayer of the Mass. Please know that we will continue these recorded Masses indefinitely. We are so grateful to DV Productions, our Liturgists Mary Robertson and Meggie Moyer, and our cantor Amy Sobczak for their efforts in making our prayer as beautiful as possible.
 
In Person Mass. Please be sure to register online to attend an in person Mass. Our Mass schedule and registration links can be found on the Reopening and Mass Times pages of the parish website. The links to those pages are included every week at the bottom of this newsletter.
 
Eat, Drink and Be Catholic @Home with Fr. Tim Kitzke. On Wednesday, January 13, starting at 7:00 pm, Fr. Tim will join Eat, Drink and Be Catholic as we continue to explore this year’s theme: “From Social Distance to Encounter.” Fr. Tim will reflect on the distances he sees right now and will discuss ways in which our faith empowers us to bridge those distances through authentic encounter. To receive the Zoom link, please email Chad Griesel at grieselc@archmil.org. We will also post a video of the conversation on our Family of Four Parishes’ YouTube page after the event.
 
Jon M. Sweeney in Conversation with Damian Costello, Thursday, January 14, 7:00 pm. Milwaukee-based religious scholar and parishioner Jon M. Sweeney joins Boswell Books for a conversation about his latest work, Nicholas Black Elk: Medicine Man, Catechist, Saint, which tells us the life story of the deeply spiritual Nicholas Black Elk, who served as both a traditional Oglala Lakota medicine man and a Roman Catholic catechist and mystic. Sweeney will chat with Damian Costello, author of Black Elk: Colonialism and Lakota Catholicism. This event is cohosted by our Family of Four Parishes. To register for this Zoom event, click here.
 
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Next weekend marks the remembrance of the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. If you'd like to commemorate his life with other people of faith, here are two opportunities for you to consider: 
On Saturday, January 16 from 1:30 - 3:30 pm, the Archdiocese of Milwaukee is sponsoring their 30th Annual Prayer Service for MLK Day entitled, "The Drum Major Instinct."  This event will be livestreamed on the Archdiocesan YouTube channel. You can find more information at www.archmil.org/ArchdioceseEvents/Dr.-Martin-Luther-King-Jr4.-Prayer-Service.htm.

On Sunday, January 17 at 7:00 pm, the Family of Four Parishes is helping to sponsor Interfaith Devotional: The Faith and Vision of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This online video presentation promises to be quite inspiring, with representatives of MANY faith traditions, including our own! You can find more information on this flyer as well as the link to register.
 
Parish Financial Support. We continue to be humbled by your financial support of the parish during these tender and tenuous times. Thank you so much, it has been amazing to witness the generosity of so many! Please mail in your envelopes and contributions to our parish office (SS Peter & Paul Parish, 2491 N Murray Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211), and our parish staff will process these.
 
Please do not hesitate to contact me (Cell: 414-305-3824; baumgardnerj@archmil.org) or Fr. Tim (Cell: 414-762-7986; kitzket@archmil.org) if you need anything! Be assured of our love and prayers.
 
Sincerely, with love,
Fr. John
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