I don’t know when it started but a while back the Serra Club started what is known as Priesthood Sunday. I happen to be the current chaplain of the Serra Club of West Omaha, so I thought that it would be a good idea to be the one to push this activity this year. It is traditionally scheduled to be the last Sunday of September. This year that is Sept. 26th.
The Serra Club’s role is to promote vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life. It also supports our current clergy and consecrated men and women. With that in mind Fr. Lorig and I would like to encourage you to celebrate Priesthood Sunday but praying for vocations. We are worried about the shortage of young men and women being willing to serve the church in this way. So we figure that the greatest thing that can happen to support us is to help us continue the work we are doing by praying for our replacements.
Many of you did that during the week before our non-ordination Saturday. You did Holy Hours before the Blessed Sacrament on June 1st and we had a special Holy Hour that night and then at 10am, 6/3, when we would normally have had an ordination. I hope you did not think that those prayers are no longer needed. In the last three years we have had a net loss of over 20 priests. In the next eight years we are figuring another 30 less than we have now. Part of that is because of the good news of 40-50 years ago, when we had a lot of ordinations. One year we had 14. Some of those priests are already gone or, like me, are getting really old.
What Fr. Lorig and I are proposing is that we have another push for Holy Hours for vocations. The nicest opportunity is on this Monday, Sept, 20th, but obviously any time is a good time. At St. Joan of Arc the Blessed Sacrament is exposed for adoration and prayer 24/7. There are people at both churches praying all the time. If you are not one of them, this is another reason to push yourself.
The opportunity on Monday, 9/20, and a Holy Hour with Archbishop Lucas at St. Margaret Mary Church from 7-8pm. Exposition will be done with a special monstrance that was blessed by Pope John Paul II, who is now Saint John Paul. The Serra Club is sponsoring this time and will have a meet and greet opportunity starting at 6pm that evening. This will be held at the old Chancery building that is now owned by SMM. This is your chance to see what that building is like, in case you have never been called into the principal’s, I mean the Archbishop’s, office. That building is directly west of SMM Church, 100 N. 62nd St. There will be a few snacks and the Serra Club will explain some of the activities that they are doing year after year. Then we will all head across the street to attend the Holy Hour.
Fr. Lorig and I encourage you to come as individuals, as families, or as representatives of our parish organizations. And we will pray for you as you continue to pray for us and our successors.
Fr. Frank Baumert
Senior Associate Pastor