Pastor’s Notes – July 30, 2017

Dear Parishioners and Friends:

An old retired couple decided to treat themselves with a new Mercedes sports car. They visited a dealership, picked out a car and informed the salesman that they had $70,000 but would need to finance $25,000 to close the deal. He promised to hold the car for them.

A month later they returned to learn that the car had just been sold to a gorgeous blond, elegantly dressed. That young woman was sitting in her new Mercedes and about to drive off. The old man, visibly upset, looked at the woman, then shouted at the salesman, “Young man, you said you would hold the car till we raised enough financing. You told me that there was no discount to this model. Yet you closed the deal with that woman over there. That was wrong!”

The salesman took a deep breath and said, “Well, what can I tell you?” She had $70,000 ready cash. She didn’t need any financing help. And, sir, just look at her, how could I resist that beautiful woman.” Just then the young woman walked over the senior couple. She handed the keys to the Mercedes to the old man and said, “There you go, dad. I told you I could get him to lower the price. See you later Mom and Dad. Happy Father’s day.”

A month ago the Redemptorist leadership team in Denver made a significant financial decision. The team chose to move the residence of the provincial and his two consultors from Denver to Chicago. For the past 21 years the provincial leadership team lived in an apartment house near downtown Denver. For the past 12 years they conducted business in a large office building.

In Chicago the provincial and his consultors will reside in St. Michael’s parish – staffed by Redemptorists. They will conduct business in the former convent at St. Michael.

Next Tuesday, August 1st, we are celebrating the feast day of St. Alphonsus. St. Alphonsus founded the religious order of men, entitled, ‘The Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer.’ However, throughout the world, this congregation is affectionately known as ‘Redemptorists.’ Our mission is to: “Preach the Good News to the poor.”

When the Redemptorists came to America in 1832, the Bishops asked the priests and brothers to staff immigrant parishes. Redemptorists from Austria, Bavaria and Germany arrived in America. They ministered in parishes where many of these immigrants settled. From the early days, many Redemptorists became parish priests. Yet, we were founded to preach missions in parishes. Being parish priests, the Redemptorists tried to distinguish themselves from other parishes by directing parishes as though they were conducting a continuous mission. Even to this day the Redemptorists try to give a ‘mission’ flavor to the parishes we staff.

St. Alphonsus was a man dedicated to prayers. He directed his followers to ‘pray and pray always.’ When we pray and accept God’s way, we will find happiness in our lives. They say, “If your troubles are deep-seated and of long standing, try kneeling.”

‘Good News’ which the Redemptorists preach, means eternal salation. However, there was a young boy in North Dakota who added another interpretation for good news. This young pre-school lad was suffering from a severe case of constipation. The doctor had suggested the usual remedies of prunes, mineral oil, and enemas. Nothing worked until he drank a glass of saline solution.

He quickly visited the bathroom then rushed into the kitchen shouting to his mother, “Mom, mom, I’ve got good news! I’ve got good news!” Good news became his phrase to signal a successful bowel movement. The following Sunday, during the children’s Mass, the priest asked the kids, “Does anyone know what ‘Good News’ means?” This young kid quickly raised his hand. And now you know the rest of the story.

A Philadelphia legal firm opened a new office in Baltimore. The firm contacted a florist to deliver flowers on the day that the Baltimore office opened. Through a mix-up, the ribbon on the floral piece read “Deepest Sympathy.” When the florist was informed of the mistake, he exclaimed, “Good heavens! Then the flowers that went to the funeral home said, ‘Congratulations on your new location!”


Welcome to the Redemptorist theology students. Welcome to your new location – San Antonio. Welcome to your new location – St. Gerard. Welcome Father Peter Hill and Father Mick Fleming – the two priests in charge of the students. We are happy that all of you are part of our St. Gerard Family.

Fr. Jim Shea, C.Ss.R.