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Scenes from my first Christmas

Yes, this is my First Christmas.....as a Deacon of course. Fr. Andrew reminded me and the entire congregation of that, along with the story ...

Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Spirit of the Lord rests upon me; he has sent me to preach his joyful message to the poor.

This has already been a very busy week. I was blessed to preach this past weekend on the Fourth Sunday of Advent, about Joy and love, the kind that makes you bust at the seams. So much so that you have to share it with everyone. On Monday I preached to the men at FCI about the simple meaning of Christmas, and yesterday to the residents at St. Vincent De Paul Nursing. Yesterday was my first time there and shared how their Old Religious movies The Ten Commandments from Cecil B Demille  where special and grand. I shared how God sent His Son in a simple way..He sent Him to be with us, born as a baby, born in a very humble way, for one reason... To take us home one day. A we prepare for this journey let us keep the simple things in life close to our hearts.

Joyeux Noel

Monday, November 30, 2015

A brief novena to prepare for the Year of Divine Mercy


You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls, and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world.
O Fount of Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy,
envelop the whole world and empty Yourself out upon us.
Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
(Repeat 3 times)
Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase Your mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair nor become despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to Your holy will, which is Love and Mercy itself.
Amen. 

I confess to Almighty God

It is said at evening prayers, at times you will hear it said at mass, the Confiteor.  We all know this prayer:  I confess to Almighty God, and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned,
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,
through my fault, through my fault,
through my most grievous fault;
therefore
I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
all the Angels and Saints,
and you, my brothers and sisters,
to pray for me to the Lord our God. 


There is one line in there that has struck me straight to the heart. In what I have done, and in what I have failed to do! Unfortunately  isn't it true that in most of our prayers we fall in the habit of being too robotic.  Yes we do recite the words, but do we really understand what we are saying? In what I have done, and in what I have failed to do.  The sin of omission. The most overlooked sin in our lives. How many times have you said to yourself, I am a good person? Were  there any times in your life, that you really didn't do anything wrong but you failed to right a wrong  with compassion and mercy.  Obviously I'm writing about this because it's triggering something in my life. Not doing something wrong, doesn't mean you're completely right either. I recently followed a blog that  took it one step further, when they said the following: in what I have said, and in what I have failed to say. That one could be a double whammy. How many times in my relationships I was quick to say the wrong things, or how many times I didn't try to encourage someone. It seems like almost every day I am reminded of my favorite scripture verse "Encourage each other daily while it is still today!"

 The challenge for all of us is for each and every day to break apart that one portion of this prayer and make it the most important thing in our lives. To walk away from the sin of omission. To try to be perfect like God!


Monday, November 23, 2015

A pie in the face & Bring back the Dicky

Yesterday morning we had our annual Parish November to remember event. We had a pancake with scrambled eggs and sausage breakfast. It was a big hit. One of the things I realize that it wasn't just about  raising money for the parish. Too often times in life we get caught up about  judging the success  by dollars and cents. This one wasn't one of those. This one had a completely different feel to it, right from the start. Most of the times in years past, it was always the same people who are in charge of the events, father Kyle did a left turn on this one. He began by soliciting One by one our youngest families to be in charge. They were definitely up to the task. There was so many games for young families to play, to enjoy themselves, just to be with each other. And the verdict on this one, is Mission accomplished. This event was a testament of where our future lies and I'm happy to say it is very bright. A very disturbing comment we often times hear in Berlin is that all that's going on are funerals. To those people I say, your comments are very hurtful, but worst of all way off base. After several years of hardly anyone participating in the RCIA program, last year we had seven, this year we have 15 so far. Baptisms are going through the roof, we have had over 20 baptisms within the last month and a half. I could honestly go on and on to tell you of the many good things that are happening here in Berlin and Gorham.

Now I'm sure you want to know what the pie in the face was. We allowed the parishioners to perform an auction to raise money by pieing the pastor, the associate pastor, and yes also the Deacon in the face with a cream pie. My wife was given the honor & courtesy by my mother to hit me and she did a good job.

And now for the Dicky, or the mock turtleneck. You must remember those items growing up I know I do. Father Andrew brought that up and we even checked  Amazon.com and they are still for sale. I am seriously thinking of getting one just for fun, nothing else. 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

To live by

Life is beauty, admire it,
Life is bliss, taste it,
Life is a dream, realize it,
Life is a challenge, meet it,
Life is a duty, complete it,
Life is a game, play it,
Life is precious, care for it,
Life is wealth, keep it,
Life is love, enjoy it,
Life is mystery, know it,
Life is a promise, fulfill it,
Life is sorrow, overcome it,
Life is a song, sing it,
Life is a struggle, accept it,
Life is tragedy, confront it,
Life is an adventure, dare it,
Life is happiness, deserve it,
Life is life, defend it.

From St Therese of Lisieux

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

What to do

In the face of such strong attacks by the enemies of the Church of God, are we to remain inactive? Is that all we can do, complain and cry? No! Every one of us has a holy obligation to build a trench and personally hurl back the assaults of the enemy.

—St. Maximilian Kolbe

Sunday, November 15, 2015

The 33 - Official Trailer [HD]







 Please Check out this Trailer....and learn the rest of the story, the story of a Permanent Deacon who believed that in his weakness God is the answer! God made the impossible possible.The man who said lets go get the miners is a Permanent Deacon from Texas. The technique he used to save them has been attempted four more times for other reasons than saving human lives and failed each time. There are no coincidences in life! Praise God


Friday, November 13, 2015

For our Brothers & Sisters in France

As Catholic Christians, let us pray:

Lord, the ones you love are under siege and in danger at the hands of those who do not know you, and who do not love life. Already many are dead, and the grief will be terrible. We beg your mercy on the souls of the dead, and your healing upon those injured; but we beg your mercy upon the city of Paris and the people therein, as they are targeted by a dark madness that travels among us. We understand nothing, Lord, but we know that a light shines in the darkness, and the darkness does not overcome it. Christ Jesus, light of the world, come into this darkness. In your light, we see light.

Notre Dame de Paris, pray for the people of your city! Our Lady of Grace, you who showed yourself to Saint Catherine Laboure and brought miracles, who smiled upon Saint Therese of Lisieux and created a missionary, in your holy Motherhood, please intercede for your fearful and endangered people; bring your consolations to the people of Paris and all of France. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, hear us.

Saint Therese of Lisieux, Patron of France, pray for them
Saint John of Arc, Patron of France, pray for them.
Saint Martin of Tours, Patron of France, pray for them
Saint Remigius, Patron of France, (pray for them)
Saint John Vianney…
Saint Jeanne Jugan…
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux…
Saint Germain Cousin…
Saint Peter Julian Eymard…
Saint Louis…
Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque…
Saint Peter Fourier…
Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat…
Saints Louis and Zelie Martin…
Saint Jane Frances de Chantal…
Saint Catherine Laboure…
Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne…
Saint John Eudes…
Saint Vincent de Paul…
Saint Hilary of Poitiers
Saint Isaac Jogues…
Saint Jane de Chantal…
Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle…
Saint Benedict Joseph Labre…

Coptic Martyrs, victims of ISIS, pray for them

All you holy men and women, pray for France, and pray for us.

St. Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the Devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
and do thou,
O Prince of the heavenly hosts,
by the power of God,
thrust into hell Satan,
and all the evil spirits,
who prowl about the world
seeking the ruin of souls. Amen..


From the Anchoress at Aletia

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

How holy?

[Jesus] came to put a harlot above a Pharisee, a penitent robber above a high priest, and a prodigal son above his exemplary brother. To all the phonies and fakers who would say that they could not join the Church because his Church was not holy enough, he would ask, “How holy must the Church be before you will enter into it?”

Fulton J. Sheen

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

A change of appetite.

Something has changed in me recently, call it the effect of the Cursillo, but either way there is a change. In the last couple weeks I've made it a very conscious effort to spend more time in study. I downloaded the app. Lighthouse Catholic media, and I've listened to presentations from Dr. Scott Hahn. What they have done for me is to increase my appetite for scripture. All I can think of is the following passage from the book of Jeremiah .....When I found your words, I devoured them; your words were my joy, the happiness of my heart. Jeremiah 15:16. I have to say I am enjoying the diet I am on.

I will end with this final thought also from Dr. Scott Hahn...Study will lead to prayer, prayer will lead to greater study.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Which Beatitudes

The devil's beatitudes.....

1.  Blessed are those who are too tired, too busy, too distracted to spend an hour once a week with their fellow Christians — they are my best workers!

2.  Blessed are those Christians who wait to be asked and expect to be thanked — I can use them.

3.  Blessed are the touchy who stop going to church — they are my missionaries.

4.  Blessed are the troublemakers — they shall be called my children.

5. Blessed are the complainers — I’m all ears to them.

6. Blessed are those who are bored with the minister’s mannerism and mistakes — for they get nothing out of his sermons.

7.  Blessed is the church member who expects to be invited to his own church — for he is a part of the problem instead of the solution.

8.  Blessed are those who gossip — for they shall cause strife and divisions that please me.

9.  Blessed are those who are easily offended — for they will soon get angry and quit.

10. Blessed are those who do not give an offering to carry on God’s work — for they are my helpers.

11.  Blessed is he who professes to love God but hates his brother and sister — for he shall be with me forever!

12.  Blessed are you who, when you read this think it is about other people and not yourself — I’ve got you too!


and this last one is my own addition...

13. Blessed are you who leave church early, and think you've accomplished everything you need to! - 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Getting rid of the knots in my life


This weekend at Cursillo father Marc had a very special way to introduce reconciliation to us. We walked into the church and we were each handed a string, and then proceeded to the pews. Father then began to prepare us all for reconciliation. During the examination of conscience he kept asking us questions, challenging us, moment by moment I found myself tying up knots knots that exposed deficiencies, hurts, and moments of forgetting who I was. I honestly don't remember when the last time I confessed the sin of omission, I truly believe the blessed virgin Mary inspired me to put together one of the best confessions I have ever done in my life. The next moment occurred during confession where I could feel myself gently untying each knot. One at a time. After confession we were asked to place the small string at the foot of the statue of Mary. It was an extremely powerful moment. I had never experienced this before in my life and I am so thankful for this wonderful sacrament.

40 under 40!

The New Hampshire union leader annually recognizes 40 distinguished individuals who have made a difference in the lives of people and enhanced this great state, and who happened to be also under the age of 40. This year, through the movement of the Holy Spirit We are asking that you all participate in nominating father Kyle Stanton pastor of the good shepherd and holy family Parishes in Berlin and Gorham New Hampshire. He is truly a holy man who is dynamic and lives his faith always putting people first.





Another new day begins.

 This past weekend Cursillo #292   Was held in the northern part of New Hampshire. I was blessed to be one of the three spiritual advisers for 17 men looking to enhance their faith and bring more souls to Christ. There will be never enough words to describe the experience for the men,  and myself. i'm reminded of a quote from Matthew Kelly that life changes when habits change. I'm already working on my Palanca for the women's Cursillo  coming soon again here in the North country. I ask for your prayers  and support that the Holy Spirit will continue to guide these advisers leaders and candidates to a very fruitful week end.

Peace Deacon Mitch

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Cursillo 292

All will be silent from this blog through this weekend as Cursillo 292 starts this afternoon. May Almighty God bless you all!

Peace Deacon Mitch

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Latest update on prayer line for Cursiilo

We have more candidates and we ask you to pray for the following who will be on the Cursillo this weekend:

Candidates
Joseph Cabaup - Whitefield - Gate of Heaven Parish
Armand Chenelle - Ashland - Holy Trinity Parish
Ricky Clogston  - Pittsburg - North American Martyrs Parish
Tim Doucette - Belmont - St. Andre Bessette Parish
Tony Fitzherbert - Campton - Holy Trinity Parish
Dave Hemeon - Hill - Holy Trinity Parish
Michael Jutras  -  Exeter -  St. Michaels Parish
Jeff Leeman - Exeter - St. Michael Parish
**Isaac Madore  - Sumner, ME - Prince of Peace Parish
Bernie Martel  -  Berlin  -  Good Shepherd Parish
**Hamilton McLean - Laconia - St. Charles Parish
Joe Orzeck - Dalton - Gate of Heaven Parish
Ben Pellerin  -  Lancaster  - Gate of Heaven Parish
Bob Rutherford - Twin Mountain - Gate of Heaven Parish
Charles Schuh - Kingston - St. Michael Parish
Paul Thibault  -  Berlin -  Good Shepherd Parish
Henry Tupaj - Bethlehem - Gate of Heaven Parish

 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Please pray for our candidates

Thursday night begins our North Country Cursillo, I ask for your prayers for these men.....Joseph Cabaup - Whitefield - Gate of Heaven Parish
Armand Chenelle - Ashland - Holy Trinity Parish
Ricky Clogston  - Pittsburg - North American Martyrs Parish
Tim Doucette - Belmont - St. Andre Bessette Parish
Tony Fitzherbert - Campton - Holy Trinity Parish
Dave Hemeon - Hill - Holy Trinity Parish
Michael Jutras  -  Exeter -  St. Michaels Parish
Jeff Leeman - Exeter - St. Michael Parish
Bernie Martel  -  Berlin  -  Good Shepherd Parish
Joe Orzeck - Dalton - Gate of Heaven Parish
Ben Pellerin  -  Lancaster  - Gate of Heaven Parish
Bob Rutherford - Twin Mountain - Gate of Heaven Parish
Charles Schuh - Kingston - St. Michael Parish
Paul Thibault  -  Berlin -  Good Shepherd Parish
Henry Tupaj - Bethlehem - Gate of Heaven Parish

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Monday, October 12, 2015

Ultreya

Ultreya is a movement in the Church to help the laity discover and fundamental to being Christian. We invite you to join us either or both of these Ultreya evenings.
Tuesday, October 13th and Tuesday,
October 27th,
at Holy Family Parish, in the lower hall
 from 7:00pm to 8:15pm

Saturday, October 10, 2015

The meaning of a flag

 

The Fleurdelisé takes its white cross from the ancient royal flags of France.
Its white fleurs-de-lis (symbols of purity) and blue field (symbolizing Heaven) come from a banner honouring the Virgin Mary, reputedly carried by French-Canadian militia at General Louis-Joseph de Montcalm's victory at Carillon.
Contrary to a popular belief, the white fleurs-de-lis are not exactly taken from the banner of the kings of France (which used golden ones), though relation between both cannot be denied.
The flag is blazoned Azure, a cross between four fleurs-de-lis argent. Its horizontal symmetry allows both sides of the flag to show the same image.

Why made you ask that I am referring to the "flag of Quebec"? Well for one it is symbol of my heritage is a descendent of the French-Canadians. Out of curiosity I discovered a little bit about myself too! This summer I had the honor to be the main celebrant wonderful parishioner, and also receive the honor at another funeral to preach in French. At both events I shared that the flight was much more than a piece of tissue, fabric, that it was interwoven into our lives.
Je me Souviens - I remember 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Ultreya

Ultreya is a movement in the Church to help the laity discover and fundamental to being Christian. We invite you to join us either or both of these Ultreya evenings.

Tuesday, October 13th and Tuesday, October 27th,
at Holy Family Parish, lower hall ,from 7:00pm to 8:15pm. Please come and grow in your faith! 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Celebrating the Feast of St. Francis


Last night and today I was honored to bless the animals of our two parishes. We have great people and together we celebrated God's creatures, and Saint Francis!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Know your faith, and be ready to share!

Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope. 

Another feast day and it's all in the little things

SAINT THÉRÈSE OF THE CHILD JESUS, VIRGIN AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH

"I prefer the monotony of obscure sacrifice to all ecstasies. To pick up a pin for love can convert a soul." These are the words of Theresa of the Child Jesus, a Carmelite nun called the "Little Flower," who lived a cloistered life of obscurity in the convent of Lisieux, France. [In French-speaking areas, she is known as Thérèse of Lisieux.] And her preference for hidden sacrifice did indeed convert souls. Few saints of God are more popular than this young nun. Her autobiography, The Story of a Soul, is read and loved throughout the world. Thérèse Martin entered the convent at the age of 15 and died in 1897 at the age of 24.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Feast day today



MICHAEL, GABRIEL AND RAPHAEL

Angels—messengers from God—appear frequently in Scripture, but only Michael, Gabriel and Raphael are named.

Michael appears in Daniel's vision as "the great prince" who defends Israel against its enemies; in the Book of Revelation, he leads God's armies to final victory over the forces of evil. Devotion to Michael is the oldest angelic devotion, rising in the East in the fourth century. The Church in the West began to observe a feast honoring Michael and the angels in the fifth century.

Gabriel also makes an appearance in Daniel's visions, announcing Michael's role in God's plan. His best-known appearance is an encounter with a young Jewish girl named Mary, who consents to bear the Messiah.

Raphael's activity is confined to the Old Testament story of Tobit. There he appears to guide Tobit's son Tobiah through a series of fantastic adventures which lead to a threefold happy ending: Tobiah's marriage to Sarah, the healing of Tobit's blindness and the restoration of the family fortune.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Saturday, September 26, 2015

“Go out and meet others where they really are, not where we think they should be”

“Go out and meet others where they really are, not where we think they should be”

Feast Day today


STS. COSMAS AND DAMIAN

Saint Cosmas 

Twin brother of Saint Damian. Physician, trained in Syria; the brothers accepted no payment for their services, and their charity brought many to Christ. Reported to have miraculously replaced the ulcerous leg of a man named Justinian with one from a recently deceased man. Arrested during the persecutions of Diocletian, he was tortured, but suffered no injury. Martyr. Many fables grew up about the brothers, connected in part with the ability of their relics to heal.

Born

3rd century, of Arabic descent


Died

tortured and beheaded c.303 in Aegea, Cilicia (modern Ayas, Turkey)

 

Saint Damian

Twin brother of Saint Cosmas. Physician, trained in Syria; the brothers accepted no payment for their services, and their charity brought many to Christ. Reported to have miraculously replaced the ulcerous leg of a man named Justinian with one from a recently deceased man. Arrested during the persecutions of Diocletian, he was tortured, but suffered no injury. Martyr. Many fables grew up about the brothers, connected in part with the ability of their relics to heal.

Born

3rd century, of Arabic descent


Died

tortured and beheaded c.303 in Aegea, Cilicia (modern Ayas, Turkey)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

I never tire of seeing these words

Tonight I received a text message from a friend building me up, thanking me for everything I do. Sharing with me that he and his buddy can't figure out  how do I do what I do. He said that with all the things that I do in my life, I still find time to help them out. I still can't stop thinking of these words that I look at every single morning of each day.........Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13). 

Tonight he shared you rock, ironically I feel the same way about these two gentlemen.


My challenge is to all of you to make these words resonate in your hearts. Don't miss that opportunity to build up that special person, or just a random person in this world who just needs to be encouraged, if but just for that one moment.

Dona Nobis Pacem 

Deacon Mitch

Monday, September 21, 2015

Still rings true

"Any seeker of a higher truth or of God," Thomas Aquinas wrote, "must eventually and inevitably come back to the idea of community."

Sunday, September 20, 2015

And a quote that caught my attention

Tonight CBS 60 minutes is doing a segment on the Pope. Here is the quote...."He ditched his room in the palace for a room which is more Sherwin-Williams than Raphael!"

Dona Nobis Pacem

Deacon Mitch

PS I manage a store for Sherwin-Williams

What do you ask for?



Where do the wars
and where do the conflicts among you come from? 
Is it not from your passions
that make war within your members? 
You covet but do not possess. 
You kill and envy but you cannot obtain;
you fight and wage war. 
You do not possess because you do not ask. 
You ask but do not receive,
because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.

From today's second reading from James.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Pope’s quotes: Signs of the times | National Catholic Reporter

Pope’s quotes: Signs of the times | National Catholic Reporter

To one day hear well done good and faithful servant!

Once again today I found a deep inspiration as I am praying the novena to Saint Joseph the Worker for a very special family. This is the prayer....
 "Saint Joseph, I thank God for your privilege of being God's faithful servant. As a token of your own gratitude to God, obtain for me the grace to be a faithful servant of God as you were. Help me to share, as you did, the perfect obedience of Jesus, who came not to do His Will, but the Will of His Father; to trust in the Providence of God, knowing that if I do His Will, He will provide for all my needs of soul and body; to be calm in my trials and to leave it to our Lord to free me from them when it pleases Him to do so. And help me to imitate your generosity, for there can be no greater reward here on earth than the joy and honor of being a faithful servant of God."

Dona Nobis Pacem 

Deacon Mitch 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

You were chosen

It was a busy day being a deacon today. I met with a beautiful young family preparing to have a child baptized and first communion for the eldest child. Tonight I met with a very wonderful young man who has much to discern. He has  a a lot of soul-searching to do. We met for about an hour even though it didn't feel like it. Before the meeting I sat and prayed trying to figure out what the Lord wanted me to say to him, and through revelation this is what I shared from the novena to Saint Joseph.....

"You were chosen by the Holy Spirit. He is the mutual Love of the Father and the Son -- the heart of the Holy Trinity. In His wisdom He draws forth all creatures from nothing, guides them to their end in showing them their destiny and giving them the means to reach it. Every vocation and every fulfillment of a vocation proceeds from the Holy Spirit. "

And so goes our lives, we are chosen, we need to allow the Holy Spirit to move us , to fill us with grace,and serve Christ.

Dona Nobis Pacem

Deacon Mitch



Saturday, September 12, 2015

Sharing some great advice

Advice for New Deacons

One of the many blessings I enjoy in my present assignment (St. Michael the Archangel Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Woonsocket, RI)  is that I have three deacons serving with me.  It’s the sign of the health of our parish that we have grown three diaconal vocations within our parish over the last few years (note that one moved and serves elsewhere while one of our serving deacons moved here from elsewhere).  Our deacons are more than liturgical con-celebabrants; each has his own gifts and ministries.  I love supporting them and seeing God’s grace spread through their ministry.

I loved my time as a deacon.  Here I am assisting V. Rev. Alexander Webster serve in Afghanistan (Nativity, 2006).

I loved my time as a deacon. Here I am assisting V. Rev. Alexander Webster in Afghanistan (Nativity, 2006).

Alas, not everyone’s experiences with deacons are so positive and most priests and deacons have a fair share of first and second-hand horror stories about diaconal service gone wrong.

I have talked with many deacons and priests about the diaconate and have attempted to distill their words of wisdom into these two sets of advice for new deacons.  I encourage everyone to add their own advice in the comments section below!

Seven things that allow the deacon to be a blessing:

  • Kenosis; Surrender your life to God (through Christ) and Holy Orthodoxy.  The Word did not consider Himself so good that He wouldn’t empty Himself for our salvation; St. Paul imitated Christ by becoming what people needed so that some might be saved.  It’s not about you – it’s about loving and serving God and His people.  No matter how good your voice and vestments are, its all just noise if you don’t get this part right.
  • Know the Services Cold (but know the ustav/preferred practices of your bishop, priest, and parish, too).  Memorize the services and all its variations; mark all your books so that you’ll do the right thing even when your mind goes blank (it will).  Communicate with your priest before and after the service to make sure you both get and stay on the same page.  Defer to your priest and bishop on the services (and parish life) even when you disagree or your favorite book says something different.
  • Love, Serve, and Support Your Priest.  A big part of your calling is supporting your priest.  Like a good First Sergeant, you should use your expertise to implement his plan for parish life and evangelization.  His approach may be different that yours would be; you can and should give advice, but support him in his decisions and approach … especially in public.  Every priest needs someone he can trust to guard his six.
  • Serve, Serve, Serve, but Always Get a Blessing.  From the time of its establishment, the diaconate has had its own role within the community; later, it developed its own liturgical role.  Continually grow within those roles and live up to your calling.  Your priest should help you with this.  Remember that deacons are not independent operators; every deacon is assigned to serve directly under a specific priest (or bishop).  Stay in regular contact with your priest about what you are doing and how it is going.  Get his blessing for each task.  You do this during the Liturgy; Liturgy is life.
  • Stay Grounded and Balanced.  The demands of kenosis and diaconal service do not abrogate your other responsibilities, including the responsibility to keep yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually grounded.  Make sure that your service is sustainable.  Again, communicate with your priest so that he does not expect too much (or too little) of your time.

Seven warnings to deacons:

  • Don’t embarrass your priest, your bishop, your parish, or the Church.  The most obvious example of this is making mistakes during services, but these are more easily overcome than others.  Social media sets many clergy up for failure – be careful!  When you do make a mistake, be quick to ask for forgiveness and help with damage control.
  • Don’t act like you are still a lay leader of the parish.  Lay leaders often have pet agendas that differ from those of their priest; that is part of parish life.  One of the huge temptations of parish life is factionalism; the deacon must join the priest in being above and moderating factions.  He should never set up his own faction, lobby, or gossip against his priest (even when his priest is messing up).  If you have a problem with your priest, talk to him.  If that doesn’t work, ask for a blessing to talk to your bishop.
  • Don’t set yourself up as a second father within the parish.  You are not going to agree with your priest on everything he does.  You may not like the kind of culture he is fostering.  If you advertise your disagreement or, worse yet, try to encourage a different kind of culture than your priest, you are going to split the parish.  It’s a big temptation and you are sure to find allies who agree with you (or are willing to use you), but it’s a sin.  If you can’t learn to support your priest, ask for a blessing to talk with the bishop; he may be willing to assign you somewhere else.  Should you become a priest, you can consider fostering a different kind of culture and making different decisions, but see “kenosis” above.  The worst example of this behavior is when a deacon manipulates the factions within a parish in hopes of taking the priest’s place.
  • Don’t liturgize off-key.  If the choir or chanters seem to stumble when you are liturgizing, odds are that that you are confusing them by singing off-key.  This isn’t just hard on choirs and chanters, it is distracting to people who are trying to worship and pray.  Just because you have a beautiful bass-proffundo voice doesn’t mean you can just sing whatever notes you want.  When in doubt, stick to the tonic or the fifth.  Similarly, you aren’t at the opera or at karaoke; stay within or close to the style of the choir/parish.
  • Don’t fall victim to vainglory, apathy, or despondency.  You serve at the altar and are a leader of the community and of the Church.  This makes you a huge target for the Evil One and his servants.  Be vigilant, pray, fast, live a life in the Sacraments, tithe, study scripture and the Fathers, keep yourself healthy, and do all those things you advise your priest to do so that he can remain effective in his ministry.

Offered with love and gratitude for all your service.  I look forward to your comments!

– Fr. Anthony Perkins


Thursday, September 10, 2015

On my honor

Tonight I was honored to offer the closing prayer for the Boy Scouts troop court of honor. Before I began the prayer I asked everyone to take note of the 12 points of the Scout Law with Reverent as the final point. I also reminded them that most people remember the last thing of any projects or information and to make sure that there lives reflected a life and service to God. Here's the final prayer that I offered......

2. A SCOUT'S PRAYER

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help to keep my honor bright

And teach me that integrity of character

Is my most priceless possession.

Grant that I may do my best today,

And strive to do even better tomorrow.

Teach me that duty is a friend and not an enemy,

And help me face even the most disagreeable task cheerfully.

Give me the faith to understand my purpose and life,

Open my mind to the truth and fill my heart with love.

I am thankful for all the blessings you have bestowed upon my country.

Help me to do my duty to my country and

To know that a good nation must be made from good men.

Help me to remember my obligation to obey the Scout Law,

And give me understanding, so that it is more than mere words.

May I never tire of the joy of helping other people or

Look the Other way when someone is in need.

You have given me the gift of a body, 

Make me wise enough to keep it health,

That I might serve better.

You are the source of all wisdom,

Help me to have an alert mind,

Teach me to think,

And help me to learn discipline.

In all that I do and in every challenge I face,

Help me to know the difference between right and wrong,

And lead me in obedience on a straight path to a worthy goal.


Dona Nobis Pacem


Deacon Mitch

 

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Prepare America

There is an effect that ihas been going on for quite some time right now. By many it has been aptly named "the Francis Effect". There will be many who will shrug this off as purely emotions, for those who are weak, for those who don't really know. There is a brokenness that exists in this world and a heart that is longing for peace. Recently our holy father reached out to those in America using electronic media. Last night ABC played that telecast, and you're already witnessing people who are being touched by the words our holy father is using, the words of Christ. They are ready, they are open, they are searching to fill that void that only Christ can fill. This weekend I encourage all of you to have your eyes, ears, but most of all your hearts open for those who will fill the seats for the first time or after many times being away. Don't leave it only into the hands of the priest to reach out to these people, it is your job, it is my job, it is everybody's job to make disciples of everyone. Prepare America, prepare Berlin New Hampshire, the Holy Spirit is moving!


Dona Nobis Pacem

Deacon Mitch

Saturday, August 29, 2015

With both feet in!

 This past weekend I got another opportunity to preach. I was inspired to the Holy Spirit why watching my sales rep talk about two employees who are struggling in the company. He likened their attitude and demeanor as two people who were standing in a doorway, with 1 foot in, and 1 foot out. As you stated the negative is your are never fully committed  when that is the way you position yourself. It's incredible how we as Christians live our lives that way. Not fully committing to Christ and his church.  It's creating a lot of soul-searching for myself. It's something I'll be working on every day. Working on both feet in and fully committed.

 Dona Nobis Pacem

 Deacon Mitch 

Friday, August 28, 2015

The feast of Saint Augustine

. You inspire us, O Lord, to delight in praising you because you made us for yourself; our hearts are restless until they rest in you. Saint Augustine

Thursday, August 20, 2015

What are we cultivating?

James 3:17-18

Wisdom from above is first of all innocent. It is also peaceable, lenient, docile, rich in sympathy and the kindly deeds that are its fruits, impartial and sincere. The harvest of justice is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace. 

Dona Nobis Pacem 

Deacon Mitch 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Blessing of the child within the womb


This past weekend I served at the 9 AM mass. I could not help but stare at this young woman who is about to receive one of her greatest blessings in the world a child next spring. She is a wonderful young woman. I got to know her at a very young age being her basketball coach. She always had a very good heart and an open mind to learning. She was visiting home this weekend and she sat behind my wife and my granddaughter at mass. After mass I just had to go see her and congratulate her of the coming day. I asked her for a favor, "would you allow me the honor to bless your child in the womb?" Her answer was yes and she was about as excited as I was. I asked her who her favorite Saint was, and she said her family was very close to Saint Anne. So beneath the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary and good Saint Anne, I called upon her intercession to have Jesus bless the child, the parents, and the very anxious aunt. It was an honor to have  her to be the first to receive this blessing from me. Secretly inside I'm hoping I get to baptize this child.

Dona Nobis Pacem

Deacon Mitch know

Monday, August 17, 2015

The Eucharist

Turning his attention to the Mass itself, Pope Francis said that sometimes people are heard to say What is Mass for? I go to church when I feel like it, and I pray better alone. "

But, the Pope stressed,  “the Eucharist is not a private prayer or a beautiful spiritual experience.

The Eucharist, said the Holy Father, “ is Jesus who gives himself entirely to us.” Those who feed on Him and abide in Him through Holy Communion and faith, he added, will see their lives transformed as a gift to God and to others.

In conclusion, the Pope recalled Jesus’ words, "He who eats this bread will live forever".  He then explained that by living  in communion with Jesus on this earth we can look forward to the voice of the Risen Lord who calls us when we finally close our eyes.