Entries by Janis DeVore

Homily for Fifth Sunday of Lent

I’m finally catching up. Not on Netflix. Honestly, I’m so overwhelmed by the selections of that service that by the time I’ve selected something, I don’t have time to watch it before the hour that I want to get to bed. So I’mvcatching up on: rest, books, my bike, yard work. I hope that you’re finding blessings in this difficulty.

A difficulty it is, yet such trials are not far from God’s generous mercy. “ThevLord is compassion and love, slow to anger and rich in mercy; his wrath will come to an end: he will not be angry for ever. As a father has compassion onvhis children, the Lord has pity on those who fear him.” (Ps 103:8-9)

Pastor’s Message – COVID-19

I hope we are all faring well and that these difficulties may fair off soon. In the mean time it is important to review some incidentals around the parish.

Blessedly our churches have not been closed and you may find the church open generally on most days from 6:00am to 8:00pm.
You may rest assured that we are sanitizing the church daily with a troop of generous volunteers.

Although the Holy Water Fonts have been removed for health reasons that doesn’t mean that Holy Water isn’t healthy.

Annunciation – 2020

It was a most propitious sign that the ships The Ark and The Dove, transporting the Jesuit, Fr. Andrew White and the first governor of the Maryland Colony, Leonard Calvert et al. landed on the north shore of the Potomac, St. Clement’s Island, March 25 (the Feast of the Annunciation), 1634. The occasion was the fruit of much sacrifice. Over a hundred years of religious persecution, a failed colony in Newfoundland, many rancorous negotiations with the Crown and the Virginia Colony, a three month daring trip across the Atlantic that included surviving storms which separated the ships for weeks, finally the English speaking Catholics would have a place to call “home” in the New World, Maryland. They would be able to build churches and openly receive the sacraments. Various historical circumstances would quickly arrive to challenge this plan, but through a War of Independence, religious freedom would be established in our land.

Homily for Fourth Sunday of Lent

As sung by Steven Tyler of Aerosmith in the 1993 hit song Livin’ on the Edge, “There’s somethin’ wrong with the world today I don’t know what it is Something’s wrong with our eyes

We’re seein’ things in a different way And God knows it ain’t his It sure ain’t no surprise”

This rock band is not your usual prophetic voice. In fact it is usually a voice of vice. Nevertheless they are on to something. As they say, “Even a blind squirrel finds a nut on occasion.” We have lost sight of the way that God sees things. A personal loving God, as He has revealed Himself, must be saddened by the state of disbelief today. Cardinal Sarah, in his latest book, The Day is Now Far Spent, makes a point from his perspective as a man from Guinea. “African man cannot understand a world without God. The river would no longer have sources, and the houses would be without foundations. A world without God and without morality is like a stillborn infant.

Message from Father Murphy Regarding Coronavirus

Dear Parishioners,
It is with great uncertainty and yet with faith and hope in Divine Providence that I announce to you what I never imagined that I would communicate when I was ordained a priest to serve the Diocese of Arlington nearly 24 years ago, there will be no more Public Masses until further notice. Bishop Burbidge with great discretion resisted the chorus of anxious voices in our land until the CDC, the Governor’s Office and the White House made their latest warnings, proclamations and suggestions that all public functions should be canceled. The following policies have been crafted for St. Stephen the Martyr Parish and St. Katharine Drexel Mission from the instructions given me by Bishop Burbidge’s office.

Bishop Burbidge – Dispensation from Sunday Mass Obligation

The Following Has Been Issued by the Bishop of Arlington, March 11, 2020:
Those who are showing common symptoms of illness (fever, cough, body aches)
should avoid coming to Mass or any parish activity until 24 hours after symptoms
abate.

Until further notice, Bishop Burbidge has granted dispensation from the Sunday
Mass obligation for those segments of the community who are most vulnerable to
the effects of coronavirus (those 60 years old or older, those with chronic illness,
and those with immune system deficiencies), as well as those who provide for
the care of a person with such a condition.

Lenten Invitation from the Legion of Mary

The Legion of Mary encourages you to take the Pioneer Pledge this Lenten season to abstain from all alcoholic beverages and pray a short prayer twice a day during Lent for the end of alcoholism. For more information, please see representatives from the Legion of Mary at their table after Mass. 

2nd Annual Knights St. Patrick’s Buffet Dinner

The Father Jon O’Brien Council of the Knights of Columbus #16793 will be hosting its 2nd Annual St. Patrick’s Buffet Dinner on Saturday, March 21, 2020 @ 6:00 PM at St. Stephen’s Parish Hall. 

Doors will open after the Saturday 5:00 PM Vigil Mass) at St. Stephen’s Parish Hall located at 23331 Sam Fred Rd in Middleburg, VA .

The event is free – No charge. Donation only. Traditional Irish Fare with Mac ‘n Cheese for the Wee-ones! Irish Music and Musical Chairs.

The Bible Timeline: The Story of Salvation

Reading the Bible should bring us closer to Christ, but understanding it is often difficult. The good news is that you can understand the Bible, and The Bible Timeline, a twenty-four part Bible Study, makes it easy.

Presenter Jeff Cavins shows you how fourteen of the Bible’s narrative books tell the biblical story
from beginning to end and gives you the keys to understanding the amazing story woven throughout Scripture.