Parishioner William Alfred ”Bill” Brown , 87, passes

William Alfred ”Bill” Brown , 87, of New Albany, Indiana was called home on Saturday, July 4, 2015. He was born on Januray 21, 1928 in Jeffersonville, Indiana to Charles and Zelma (Smith) Brown. Bill worked as a salesman for Kaiser Wholesale for many years. He was a member of Holy Family Catholic Church, and The Knights of Columbus. He enjoyed all sports and loved spending time with his family and friends.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Dorothy M. (McKenney) Brown; children, Mike Brown (Kathy), and Pat Brown (Brenda); 5 grandchildren, 6 great-grandchildren, and 2 nephews.

Visitation will be on Tuesday, July 7, 2015 from 12 to 2 PM at Newcomer Funeral Home (3309 Ballard Lane, New Albany, Indiana 47150) with service to follow at 2PM with burial at St. Anthony Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to St. Elizabeth Home (601 East Market Street, New Albany, IN 47150).

Homily for the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time – July 5, 2015


 

“Who does he think he is, anyway?  What makes him so special?  We have heard it before, that indignant tone in a person’s voice who has been challenged and which is usually accompanied by an upturn of the chin and a scowl.  Today the people of Jesus’ hometown raise their eyebrows and scowl at Nazareth’s boy wonder.  “Who does he think he is, anyway?” they ask one another.  They stumble over Jesus’ wisdom and are affronted at the blessings that flow from his ministry.  The gospel tells us that the some people of Jesus’ hometown were tripped up by his ordinariness combined with his success; they took offence at his humble birth, and at his uncertain paternity. After all he was just the “son of Mary.”  They knew his family. They had watched him take his first steps. Some of the women had probably changed his diapers. They had been his next door neighbors. He had repaired their roofs and made chairs for their tables, for heaven’s sake.  He was “just Jesus.”  And yet, like Ezekiel or one of the prophets from the past, here he was, preaching in their synagogue with conviction and compelling force.  “Who does he think he is, anyway?

In today’s gospel we see that people who are not expecting God to show up in the here and now and certainly not in people who live just across the street can be scandalized – tripped up – when God visits them.  It has always been that way.  The young priest Ezekiel had to stand up and speak for God to an obstinate and idolatrous Israel who had become too sophisticated to admit their sinfulness.  A stammering Paul is sent to preach the gospel to the glitter culture of the Greco-Roman world.  “Who do you think you are?  When did God die and leave you in charge?” was the response these emissaries received.  Some theologians call this “the scandal of particularity.”  For some folks God is just “too much to take” because he comes in people who are just…well, like them.

And this, my friends, is perhaps why so many people leave the Catholic Church.  We are just “too much” for some folks. Some people say, ‘The Church is full of hypocrites, no better than anybody else.  What gives them the right to tell me what to do?’  They point to the sexual abuse committed by clergy as an example. Other folks have left the Catholic Church because they find us remote, irrelevant, and hopelessly out of date. They complain that the Church lacks compassion for people who cannot live up to its unrealistically high moral standards. “No priest can tell me what I can and can’t do in my bedroom.”  And finally some folks leave the Catholic Church because they think we are hopelessly ineffective and powerless – for all practical purposes – to make a difference in the world today.  They would rather hook their wagon to the rising star of a political cause that holds more promise.

What should we do, given that our friends and neighbors – and perhaps even members of our own family – may be scandalized by our trust in God and the reliability of his promises?  I will tell you what we must never do.  We must never be ashamed of our Lord who was “too much” for some people because he was so ordinary, so uncompromising, and so unafraid to stand alone.  Remember that our ordinary work-a-day life can shine with gospel truth.  Remember that our sinfulness and lack of faith point to the fact that it is God’s power alone that accomplishes good and great things through us as he did in Ezekiel and Paul.  Remember that being called “old-fashioned” or naïve in our values and moral choices may be the greatest compliment we’ll receive in this world.

Your Christian life is not about adhering to philosophy or even a set of moral commands.  It is about believing that God’s purpose is particularly at work in your very ordinary life, no less than in the life of Abraham or Mary of Nazareth.**  Your little life is the place where the lead of God’s pencil meets the paper of history.  Go! Be scandalously good and shockingly confident of God’s love and great things will follow.

“To be quite frank, we do not at all like the idea of a “chosen people.” Democrats by birth and education, we should prefer to think that all nations and individuals start level in the search for God, or even that all religions are equally true. It must be admitted at once that Christianity makes no concessions to this point of view. It does not tell of a human search for God at all, but of something done by God for, to, and about Man. And the way in which it is done is selective, undemocratic, to the highest degree. After the knowledge of God had been universally lost or obscured, one man from the whole earth (Abraham) is picked out. He is separated (miserably enough, we may suppose) from his natural surroundings, sent into a strange country, and made the ancestor of a nation who are to carry the knowledge of the true God. Within this nation there is further selection: some die in the desert, some remain behind in Babylon. There is further selection still. The process grows narrower and narrower, sharpens at last into one small bright point like the head of a spear. It is a Jewish girl at her prayers. All humanity (so far as concerns its redemption) has narrowed to that.”

(From Miracles, by C. S. Lewis, Chapter 14)

Homily for the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time – June 28, 2015

by Deacon James Brockmeier

When you are a priest, could you hear confessions on Skype? I was asked this question last week on a youth retreat. You can count on teenagers to be up on the latest technology. For any of you who may not know, skype is an internet video service, basically video phone calls. So, could a priest hear confessions on skype? After all, there is nothing that really happens in confession that couldn’t be done over the internet. Someone comes in and confesses their sins, the priest listens, gives counsel, gives a penance, says the prayer of absolution. This basic exchange could happen over any means of communication. Maybe we could have confession over the phone, I mean it would be like being behind a screen, or if you aren’t shy about the whole thing, maybe you could take pictures of your sins and a priest could take a picture of himself saying the words of absolution and we could do confession that way. Maybe not. But no, we have to be in person to do confession, we have to be there in person for the sacraments. Why won’t the Church just get with the times? Maybe more people would go to confession if it were online, if there were an app for that. I think today’s Gospel gives us some insight into why the Church is not broadcasting Sacraments on the internet.

Jairus’ daughter was ill and feared dead. She was only twelve years old. We don’t hear about his decision making process in coming to find Jesus, but we can imagine that as a synagogue official, there had been a lot of talk about Jesus happening around him, and he would have heard about his miracles of healing. So with no other hope left for his daughter’s life, he seeks Jesus out, and when he finds Jesus, he falls down at his feet, and begged him to do something very specific, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay hands on her, so that she may be made well and live, and so Jesus followed him.” ‘Come and lay hands on her.’

And as Jesus is walking on the way to Jairus’ house, there is a woman who has been hemorrhaging for twelve years, and because of this she was considered unclean by the Jews. Everyone would have avoided her, because contact with her would have meant that they too would be unclean, they would be kept from worshiping in the temple or at the synagogues for a time, as she had been forbidden for twelve years. This untouchable woman, whom we are told has been failed by countless doctors, says to herself, “If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured.” Catholic music artist Danielle Rose, wrote a song about this woman, in which she writes a beautiful summation of this thought, “IF I touch him he will heal my heart that bleeds, if I touch him he will give me all I need, If I stretch my hand to touch his garments hem, I believe that I will be made whole again” If I touch him. And she does touch him, and Jesus can feel the power leave him as she is healed.

When Jesus arrives at Jairus’ house, the little girl has died, and the people there are weeping. Jesus goes to where the little girl’s body is laying, he holds her hand and he speaks to her, ‘Talitha koum,’ ‘little girl get up.’ And the girl does get up.

Between today’s first reading and the witness of Christ in the Gospel today, we hear that Jesus has authority over death and he has the authority over those who are unclean to wash away their impurity. But we also see that Jesus does not exercise this authority from afar. He does not pronounce in one moment that the dead should be raised and all those unclean should be healed. After all, Jesus, the second person of the trinity, became man, took on flesh to do this. His flesh is no accident. He came in flesh to touch our sickness, to touch our brokenness, to share with us in our blessings, and to touch death. He came to speak to human ears, to be felt in the embrace of his disciples, to be seen, to eat and drink with us, to be eaten and drank by us, to smell with us, to smell like us, to become acquainted with our blood, to feel our joy, to know laughter, to heal and to be known by us in our bodies.

And the great gift of knowing our God, knowing Jesus Christ, through our senses is available to us in Sacrament. In fact, we believe that in Sacrament, there is an unbroken line of touch from Christ to us here today. The Apostles whom Christ lived with and laid his hands on, they laid their hands on their successors in the Sacraments of Baptism, the anointing of Confirmation, in the laying on of hands. And this has been done for two thousand years. It is a kind of two thousand year old game of 6 degrees of separation, but it is a line that connects us to the historical body of Christ, to our God. And it is not only an unbroken line of touch, but an unbroken line of grace. We know that that is not the only way that we touch our God. We touch our God in the body of Christ in the Eucharist, we touch our God in the waters of Baptism, we touch our God in the oil of Chrism at confirmation, we touch our God in the grace we receive from loving those around us, especially husbands and wives, our children, our families. We touch our God and receive his healing in the sacrament of Anointing. And in all of these sacraments, we hear words, really present human words, whose sound waves crash our ears and bring us the grace filled and healing words of Christ, made present again by the voices of those who are members of his body, spoken by ‘other Christs’ through the grace of the sacrament of Holy Orders.

In all of these places, the love of Christ, the presence of Christ, is made manifest again in physical presence. What a blessing it must have been for the hemorrhaging woman to hear from the mouth of Christ, ‘your faith has saved you,’ what a blessing it must have been to feel the power of Christ’s healing come through his garment. What a blessing it must have been for Jairus to see Jesus holding his daughter’s hand and telling her to rise. But what a blessing it is for us, to feel the healing waters of Baptism flow over us even if we don’t all remember. What a blessing it is to hear our forgiveness spoken from the mouth of a loving servant of Christ, to feel the oil of healing on our hands, to smell the oil of our confirmation on our heads, to taste Christ, to touch and taste our salvation. We are blessed by his presence among us, more blessed than even Jairus or the Hemorrhaging Woman could have imagined.

Holy Family 2015 Girls’ Volleyball Tryouts

Volleyball-bluegold-small-shutterstock_8453149Volleyball Tryout times are:

7/8th grade
Tuesday July 21- 7-8:00
Optional tryout day- July 23 same time

5/6th grade: 2 days
Monday July 20 and Wednesday July 22- 7-8:00

3/4th grade: one day only
July 23- 6-7:00

Any questions? Please email Kelly Hornung, before these dates.

2015 Peter’s Pence Collection

(CNS/Paul Haring)

(CNS/Paul Haring)

This weekend, June 27th and 28th, the Archdiocese of Indianapolis will take up the Peter’s Pence Collection, which provides Pope Francis with the funds he needs to carry out his charitable works around the world. The proceeds benefit the most disadvantaged: victims of war, oppression, and disasters. Join our Holy Father as a witness of charity to those who are suffering.

Theatre Group planning it’s 32nd season!

hftg-logo (640x619)Holy Family Theatre Group is calling all PAINTERS, BUILDERS, HOSTS and HOSTESSES, and OFF STAGE and ON STAGE cast members! Please contact Cindy Black at 502-445-6125 to see about helping out with our 2015-16 season!

Homily for the 12th Sunday of Ordinary Time – June 21, 2015


 

“Hold on to this rope and whatever you do, don’t let go!”  That’s what my friend Nick said to me as he battled to get the little sailboat we had taken out under control.  It was my first time at sailing. We were out on the Ohio River near Jeffersonville.  What had been a balmy summer day when we started out, all of a sudden the sky turned into sickly cool green storm.  All around us we could see other small crafts heading in.  I can’t remember why our boat was not responding like it should.  Nick was frustrated but he kept his head.  He finally managed to flag down a larger boat that towed us to shore.  After we had the boat safely tied up he sat down and started shaking.  Then he looking up and started to laugh.  “Dan, we were in big trouble out there.  Aren’t you glad you didn’t know it?!”  That’s when I started shaking.

I don’t know whether you’ve ever had boating experience like that or like the one that the disciples were in on the Sea of Galilee, but I’ll bet many of you have been in a situation where, despite all of your skill, your background, your maturity, your experience, you just could not take control of things.  You were doing your best and that was not enough.

Maybe a storm hit when you where using all of the study skills that worked for you before but they seemed to be useless in a class you needed for your degree.  You felt yourself being swept up in panic.  Or the time when a meeting at work erupted into angry accusations.  No matter what you said to calm things, the voices got louder and angrier.  Or at family gathering when resentment over past hurts, like the eye of the storm, had everybody tensed for more confrontation.  Frustrating, frightening situations like these seem to come from nowhere like a summer storm!  Times like these not only test our endurance, they test our faith.  “God, where are you?  Help me!  Don’t you care?” we cry out.

That is our greatest fear, I think:  that ultimately we’re on our own.  That God is asleep; God has stopped listening.  That was the disciples’ fear.  “Master, don’t you care that we are drowning?”  It is the cry of all of us who fear we are alone just when we need God the most.  When we have done our utmost and are staring failure in the eye.  I think of all the people who have so desperately tried to do something about the violence in our country; people who have worked to prevent mentally unstable people from having access to firearms.  “God, where were you when your servants at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church were being slain as they meditated on your holy word?  Didn’t you care about them?  Could you not protect them?”

At this point in the homily I could tell you that God does care and cares deeply.  And if I said that I would be speaking the truth.  The One who braved the fiercest of soul-storms in the Garden of Gethsemane and bested it is with us, beside us in our crisis But those words mean little until we have discovered the truth of them ourselves.  Until then the words, “God cares” are just nice words.  How do we find the truth of those words?

First, we stay in the boat.  We don’t stop working the oars.  We do what we can and trust Jesus to do the rest.  Second, we remember that there are edges to the storm.  There was a time before our present crisis and there will be a time after.  The One who made us is greater than the storm.  The One who made us is master of even the greatest storm: death itself.  Thirdly, we look around and remember that we are not alone.  The folks around us today have been in the same or a similar boat as ours.  They, too, have had their stormy weather. And they have called out to the same master of the wind and waves.  We are here together as surely as those disciples in the little boat, as sure as the good folks of Mother Emmanuel Church of Charlestown.  We pray, we trust, we man the oars of our little church here at 129 West Daisy, and we keep singing.

 

What though the tempest loudly roar?

I hear the truth it liveth!

What though the darkness ‘round me close?

Songs in the night it giveth.

 

No storm can shake my inmost calm

While to that rock I’m clinging

Since Love is Lord of heaven and earth

How can I keep from singing!

Tithing through the summer

FaithDirect logo250pxWhat is the best way to ensure our parish receives the support needed for our operating expenses and ministries during the busy summer months?  eGiving through Faith Direct!  Please enroll today by visiting www.faithdirect.net. Our church code is IN585.  Increased enrollment with Faith Direct will help stabilize our parish finances during the coming summer months when many families are away on vacation. Thank you for your continued support of our parish family with your time and talents as well as treasure!

God Bless you,

Father Dan and the Pastoral Staff

An invitation to pray and discern about serving on the Pastoral Council

Dear Friends in Christ,

In a few short weeks we will begin the discernment process for bringing a new member onto our Holy Family Pastoral Council.  We will need one person to represent the parish at-large. As your pastor I am very grateful to the current members of our council for all the help they have given me in the past three years.  They are men and women who bring the shared practical wisdom of Catholic life as it is lived here in southern Indiana to shaping the vision and direction of our parish.

Have you ever prayerfully considered serving your parish community on the council?  Do you know someone who might find it fulfilling to serve the People of God this way?  I invite you to read the profile of a pastoral councilor below and give me a call if you want to look further into this way of serving your parish.  My cell phone is 812-267-8147.

In Christ, Fr. Dan

What is the Pastoral Council?

The Pastoral Council serves the pastor as a consultative body of men and women who bring the wisdom of their parish to important decisions.  The pastor consults the pastoral council to achieve a specific threefold purpose first defined at Vatican II: “to investigate and consider matters relating to pastoral activity and to formulate practical conclusions concerning them” (Vatican II Decree on Bishops, no. 27). The main work of pastoral councils is to aid the pastor in his care of souls by investigating, considering, and draw conclusions about the pastoral activity o  f their parish.

What kind of person would find pastoral council ministry fulfilling?

  • A person who wants to advise his/her pastor on how better to care for God’s people.
  • A person who is comfortable with being a consultant, knowing that decisions are ultimately made by the pastor.
  • A person who trusts the pastor and his staff with the implementation of the council’s recommendations once they are accepted by the pastor.
  • A person who is reasonably knowledgeable in his/her Catholic Faith, practices it, and understands that our Faith must be applied to the ever-changing situation of the Church and the parish.
  • A person who is comfortable in an environment of open and free discussion, based on positive regard for others. “In the essentials unity; in doubtful matters liberty; in all things charity.” St. Augustine
  • A person who can work both in voting and consensus situations, especially when a decision affects everybody and when the support of everyone is essential to the decision’s success.

Meet Deacon James Brockmeier

DcnJamesBioPicDeacon James will be with us this Summer of 2015!

Hello! My name is Deacon James Brockmeier, and I am spending my summer with you here at Holy Family. I am a Seminarian for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and am from the south side of Indianapolis. I graduated from Marian University, where I was studying to be a high school religion teacher. In my senior year, I began feeling called to the priesthood, a call I had thought quite a bit about when I was a teenager. I have been a Seminarian for the last four years, during which time I have been studying at St. Meinrad. I have had the chance to work with a youth group near St. Meinrad and in Campus Ministry at Bellarmine University. For the last few years I have been managing the Unstable, which is our seminary bar and pizza place. I have a love for the Church, which brings us all together in Christ, and a love for preaching, which I look forward to sharing with you this summer.

Favorite Book: Brothers Karamazov by Dostoevsky

Favorite Movie: Dan in Real Life

Favorite Saint: St. Ignatius of Antioch

Favorite Scripture Passage: John 4:10-14

Hobbies: Fishing, Golf, Sports watching, Movie watching