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SUNDAY MASS SCHEDULE:

SATURDAY: 5PM
SUNDAY 7:30AM, 9AM,  10:30AM, 12 NOON AND 6:30PM

MEMORIAL DAY MASS:  

Monday, May 29th at 9AM


Memorial Day

By Sr. Helen Marie Kling, D. C.,  Pastoral Assistant

       When I was getting my Master’s Degree, I studied at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.  I was privileged to live with our Sisters in the house on the grounds of the United States Soldiers’ and Airmen’s Home on N. Capitol St. where the Sisters were responsible for  directing  the nursing of these wonderful men and women. From there, I could walk to the Capitol!   This also put me very close to many of the monuments built as war memorials and provided the opportunity to attend the annual celebration on the Mall for Memorial Day, remembering  those who have given their lives for the freedom you and I enjoy today.  
     What a privilege it was to be so close to what we, as citizens, do to remember the sacrifices of the few for the many.  It was always a time of celebration and refreshment to be at these places and, quite honestly, I just took it for granted.    
     What really brought to the fore the reality of why we celebrate Memorial Day, was visiting Arlington Cemetery. It is beautiful, serene, quiet, well-ordered and a wonderful, respectful, tribute to those who lie there.  But for me, each of those white marble stones represents not just the soldier, but a family and friends who gave and sacrificed for us also. I’m sure some of you are in that number. One time I went to Arlington with a widow, who was also a veteran, on the first anniversary of her husband’s death. When I saw and felt some of what she was experiencing, and I looked around me totally surrounded by all those white marble stones, it wrenched my heart to realize the ongoing pain and anguish caused by war. When her tears were controlled and we were ready to leave, she showed the strength her husband wished for her and pulled out a can of beer, opened it,  and poured it over the grave.  Bidding a fond farewell she just said, “Enjoy!” and today she continues to move on - with his picture in the front seat of her van.  This is eleven years later.  
     Memorial Day has been celebrated under differing names and at different times since the end of the Civil War.  Our forefathers recognized the need to remember, to recognize, and to celebrate what these people have given to us. Even our Savior, Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, asked us to “Do this in remembrance of me.” Perhaps today can remind us to pray that we don’t squander what has been given us, and that we don’t just take it for granted.  At the Korean War Memorial in D.C.  there is inscribed in stone, stark,  large letters reading, “Freedom is not free.”
     Remembering those who lost their lives in military service speaks well for our country, for what we value and who and what we respect.   Many people take the time this day to attend Mass, visit a cemetery, attend an interfaith prayer service, or find a way to honor those who have died before they begin the festivities that also go with this day. Perhaps you and your family can begin the day with the following prayer found in the book Catholic Household Blessings and Prayers. It is a Prayer for Memorial Day:

God of power and mercy, 
You destroy war and put down earthly pride.
Banish violence from our midst and wipe away
our tears, 
That we may all deserve to be called your sons and daughters.
Keep in your mercy those men and women who have died for the cause of freedom
And bring them safely into your kingdom of justice and peace.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen
 


Congratulations Fr. Jason on your 20th Anniversary of Ordination to the Priesthood!

This year’s Elementary School Awards Ceremony on Wednesday May 24th fell on a special date, Father Jason’s 20th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood.  He was surprised by our school children who congratulated him and offered best wishes with cards and a beautiful new green stole for Ordinary Time.  This stole includes symbolism from Psalm 23 and words embroidered from the Our Father, to acknowledge Father Jason’s commitment to follow the example of the Good Shepherd.  God bless Father Jason on his 20th Anniversary!  Congratulations!





Totus Tuus is Returning! July 16-21

St Benedict Summer Catechetical Youth and Teen Program is scheduled for Sunday-Thursday, July 16-20 for  grades 7-12 from 7:00-9:00pm and Monday-Friday, July 17-21 for grades 1-6 from 9:00am-2:30pm. Join the summer fun!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER TODAY
For more information contact Nancy Uczen at nuczen@stbenedict.com.


Save these Dates! Youth Ministry Summer Opportunities at St. Benedict Parish

Teen Service Week - June 24th-July 1st
Week long immersion trip hosted at the Maria Kaupas Center at
Maria Catalyst High School open to high school students

** FULL ** Lord Have Mercy - June 26th -30th ** FULL **
THIS SUMMER MINISTRY OPPORTUNITY IS FULL!
St. Ben’s kids committed to serving the community for 5 days. 
7th and 8th grade graduates welcome.

Notre Dame Vision - July 10th -14th      
Spend a week at the University of Notre Dame reflecting on your gifts and
how you will use them in the world. 8th grade graduates thru 12th grade.

Totus Tuus - July 17th -21st                             
Volunteer alongside missionary college aged Catholics sharing their faith
with our parish children. 6th-12th grade are welcome to serve.

Visit this sign up to share an interest in these opportunities and receive more information. 
Questions? Call Ms. McMillan at 773-509-3841.


CAMPAIGN UPDATE

Since the two ‘in pew’ commitment weekends that we hosted for our Capital Campaign, pledges have still been coming into the rectory!  Thank you!  That puts us at $4,604,683 pledged toward our Capital Campaign total need of $6.2 Million dollars.  This is so unbelievably generous and will make a huge impact on our future.  Thank you for your generous support of the Campaign!  And thanks to all the volunteers who worked so hard on the campaign to make us such a huge success.  I am so grateful for your generous spirit that has drawn us together tightly as a parish community.  Everyone pitched in to make this campaign a success; old, young, long time parishioners, new parishioners, single parishioners, families, families with kids in our School, families with kids in our Religious Education, large amounts, small amounts, everyone pitched in!  Thank you!! 
    As successful as we have been, this pledged amount includes only 15% of our registered parishioners to date.  For sure a good number of parishioners have been through one, two, three, or four previous Capital Campaigns and might feel a little ‘campaigned out’.  This is certainly understandable.  But what about the hundreds of households who have never contributed to an extraordinary Capital Campaign like this?  Won’t you please consider a gift to this Campaign that secures our future so boldly?  Pledge cards are located at the St. Benedict Shrine near the Campaign banner.   Your gift will go a long way to make us secure for the future.  Please pray about your gift!  
    May God continue to bless you and those you love.  Please pray for me as I pray for you daily.  God bless, Fr. Jason


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Campaign Details

As many of you may know, last week we announced Forward in Our Faith, a capital campaign for our parish and preparatory school. This campaign will help us address the following needs:
1) Maintenance and upgrades to the church and campus facilities ($2,785,000):
        a. A new roof and complete tuck-pointing of the church
        b. New windows and tuck-pointing for the Leavitt-facing side of the school
        c. Resurfaced parking lot and upgrades to the playground
        d. Upgrades to the boiler room and tuck-pointing for the convent
2) A two-story addition to the elementary and secondary school ($2,750,000)
        a. Multigenerational and multipurpose campus learning center
        b. Three new classrooms
        c. Four preschool classrooms, to replace the secondary school library
3) Stewardship to our wider Church ($440,000)
        a. Our contribution to the Archdiocese’s To Teach Who Christ Is capital  campaign, for Catholic education and faith formation
        b. An educational endowment for our sharing parish, Our Lady of the Snows

To support these projects, we have set ourselves a minimum goal of $4,500,000  and a challenge goal of $6,200,000.

These projects will help us to accomplish a number of goals:
First, maintenance and upgrades to the church and other campus facilities will allow us to preserve our historic church and ensure that our facilities are safe and comfortable places for us to gather and grow together. 

Next, a two-story addition to the elementary and secondary school will allow us to begin implementing 21st century learning spaces, thus strengthening the quality of the innovative Catholic education we already offer our students, as well as affording us valuable extra space for our many gatherings and activities!

Finally, as a parish dedicated to Catholic education and to teaching others in the faith, we are proud to accept the call to stewardship and support Catholic education and faith formation throughout the Archdiocese through the To Teach Who Christ Is capital campaign, and to support Catholic education at Our Lady of the Snows.

Once again, many thanks to our Campaign Executive Committee and the members of our faith family who have already given so generously. We look forward to sharing more updates with you in the coming months!


Calling Interested Retirees in the Parish! Become a volunteer at our beloved parish school!

Did you know that the parish Catholic school welcomes retirees to volunteer in the school? We have several retired parishioners who help out on a regular basis in the school. Some activities include working with young students in early childhood classrooms, receptionist subs, tutoring, classroom assistants, library assistant and advancement secretarial work. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Ms. Rachel Gemo, Head of Parish School for more information. We think it is a great way for retirees to stay active and for our students to experience intergenerational learning. Call Ms. Gemo at 773-463-6797 ext 404 or email her at rgemo@stbenedict.com.


 

ILLINOIS KIDS NEED YOUR SUPPORT!

As a member of the Illinois Kids Campaign, the Catholic Conference of Illinois believes that no investment is more critical to our kids’ future than a quality education, and we hope you will add your voice by sharing that message.  Please join the thousands of parents and families across Illinois who are calling on Springfield to Invest in Kids.

The Illinois Kids Campaign is a statewide coalition urging lawmakers to take meaningful steps toward providing all children with the best education possible through important policies such as:

  • Teacher tax credits for out-of-pocket classroom supplies
  • Scholarships for students to attend K-12 nonpublic schools or public schools out of district
  • Critical funding for arts, music, and sports programs
  • Capital funding for facilities and infrastructure improvements
  • Increased tax credits to parents for qualified education expenses at public and nonpublic schools
     

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

1. Contact your legislator by visiting the Campaign website www.illinoiskidscampaign.org
2. Then find us on Twitter and Facebook and join the conversation!
3. Spread the word. Tell your fellow parents and parishioners, neighbors, colleagues and friends about this important work and ask them to contact their legislators, too.
Thank you for your support, and your ongoing dedication!

Zach Wichmann, Director of Government Relations
Catholic Conference of Illinois
217-528-9200


Offering our Time, Talent and Treasure to our Parish
And to God who has blessed us abundantly!

Our first hour of our time goes to God every Sunday in the Mass and receiving Jesus in the Eucharist.

Please CLICK HERE to download the Ministry Volunteer Form and let us know what ministries to which you are interested in offering your time. Thank you!


New Procedures for Requesting Graphic Design Work or Communications Requests:

When Requesting E-blast Communications, Facebook Postings, Website Assistance, Graphic Design Work and the Like...

We are fortunate to have several talented people in our Mission Advancement Office who can help design and create communications and graphic design work for school needs. Maria Tubay, our Director of Communications for the Parish and School,  Joe Accardi, our Mission Advancement Officer, Janet Gallagher, our Director of Admissions Grades K-5 & Fund Our Future Appeal Coordinator, as well as Erik Petersen, our Director of Secondary Admissions.

Our goal is to use the time of each member of the Advancement Staff as wisely as possible. Smaller project requests can be done by most members of the Mission Advancement Staff, while Maria Tubay can take on much more sophisticated design projects (as well as do the weekly parish bulletin).

In order to help prioritize projects and use staff members in thoughtful, purposeful ways , ALL REQUESTS for communications or graphic design work, will be submitted by an electronic ticketing system. These requests will be funneled through either Fr. Jason for PARISH COMMISSION requests, or Joe Accardi for EDUCATION COMMISSION requests, who will then parcel out the assignments as needed depending on the Advancement Team’s work load.  If you have any questions about this, please contact Mr. Joe Accardi at jaccardi@stbenedict.com. Thank you so much!

Click here to submit PARISH COMMISSION project requests

Click here to submit EDUCATION COMMISSION project requests