Considering the ongoing devastation caused as a result of Hurricane Irma, the Diocese of Venice is taking up a special collection the weekend of September 23-24. Thank you for your generosity!
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Parish Life

 

Thoughts from Fr. Bob – 10th Anniversary & World Youth Day

 

We all marvel at how quickly the years pass by. I can hardly believe that it is August already! But more astonishing, St. Agnes is coming up on its 10th Anniversary as a parish!  Perhaps you’ve seen the events we have planned for our 10th Anniversary published in recent bulletins, or picked up a save the date card as you entered church today. These dates represent significant events in the life of St. Agnes to date. They tell a tale so to speak, a story of faith and our love for Jesus Christ. Today I would like to share the significance of the first of these anniversary events which will take place on Monday, August 15, 2016.

As the building of the church neared completion 10 years ago, there was much anticipation and excitement in the air.  People had been witnessing the progress of the construction over many months.  They were anxious to experience and see just what St. Agnes “Chapel”, as it was called, was becoming.  Construction had come along far enough that the decision was made to celebrate Mass on the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary on August 15, 2006.  As you can see by the picture of the Sanctuary, it was not yet complete and things look a little different today. 

On Monday, August 15th we will have a 7:00 pm bilingual Mass in English and Spanish as we always do on Holy Days.  But, it will be especially festive on this day on which we kick off our 10th anniversary year, and I pray that you will come.  Following Mass, there will be a reception with cake and beverages in the canopy area. 

As we embark upon the celebration of this milestone year, I hope that you will join in the many and varied celebrations we have planned. We are truly blessed and have so much to celebrate and for which to thank our awesome God!

We welcome back our World Youth Day pilgrims from Krakow, Poland!  The group of 20 under the direction of our Youth and Young Adult Coordinator Robert Massey grew in faith and love of God during this powerful experience with more than two million young people from around the world.  I had the privilege of being the main celebrant for our Diocesan Mass with them in the chapel of St. Maximilian Kolbe near Warsaw. We also attended Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa and with Bishop Dewane at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Krakow.  They saw the place where Jesus appeared to Sr. Faustina Kowalska at the Shrine of Divine Mercy, felt the tragic sadness of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp, and witnessed the beauty of Krakow’s Wawel Castle and Cathedral where Karol Wojtyla (St. John Paul II) served as Archbishop before his election as pope. 

Our teens and chaperones sang and walked and danced and prayed with countless people, embracing youth from around the world while trading our American flag pins and Florida turtle necklaces for similar treasures from foreign lands.  They heard inspiring speakers, enjoyed concerts, participated in Adoration, took advantage of the Sacrament of Reconciliation and welcomed Pope Francis in their midst.  Most precious to me were their smiles, joy, comradery, kindness to one another, and the Christ-like spirit they showed … a little bit of heaven on earth as I have come to expect from World Youth Days.  We can all be proud of these young people of St. Agnes, inspired during this graced time by Saints Maximilian Kolbe, John Paul II, Faustina and others, they showed me a saintliness of their own that gives me great hope for the future.  Jezu ufam tobie … Jesus I trust in you.

 

 

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