Advent Season is Upon Us

First Week of Advent.  ‘Behold, the Lord will come, and all His holy ones with Him; and on that day there will be a great light.” (Zec. 14:5, 7.)  Let us continue to pray for the light of the World to bring peace to our suffering and troubled world.

We had about 4 inches of snow yesterday…and from the sounds of it, it will all be melted by the weekend.  The wet, sticky snow was good for making good snowmen.  My sister, Rita, will be

returning to Indonesia on Friday.  Here she is with her snowman.  She will leave the farm near West Union at 6:30 a.m. and arrive at her home in Sentani, Indonesia at about 7 a.m. on Monday her time.  Her trip takes her from Minneapolis to Tokyo to Singapore to Jarkarta to Jayaoura to Sentani with a couple layovers along the way.  It’s a long trip.  She does cross the International Dateline along the journey.

I hope our Thanksgiving Day was truly a day to give thanks for the blessings from a good God who loves us very much.  Our table was laden with good food…but the first event of the day was to attend Mass.

Sunday is the Second Sunday of Advent and also the Feast of Saint Nicholas.  I hope you’ve been good so Saint Nicholas can leave you some goodies.  I remember, as a child, Saint Nicholas always left us some peanuts and candy.  There’d be a big racket on the porch, but no one was there, but there was a bag of goodies on the wood box!

December 8th, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, is a big feast for our Religious Community.  We are mindful that our religious title is Franciscan sisters of the Immaculate Conception.  We go by Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls as a legal title since it is called for in so many dealings with the public.  It is also the day on which Pope Francis will have the Catholic Church begin the “Year of Mercy.”  Now during Advent we prepare for the Birth of Jesus—the God of Mercy among us.
December 12th, is the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas.

We will host the Ministerial Christmas Luncheon on Thursday, December 3rd, in St. Francis Hall from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Advent Day of Reflection is Saturday, December 5th, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The speaker is Shawn Colberg.

We will have opportunities for lots of music enjoyment in the next two weeks.  I hope you can join us for some of the events.

St. Francis Music Center has Christmas Recitals December 4th at 7 p.m.; December 5th at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.; December 6th at 1 p.m.  Their recitals are all held in Room 242 at St. Francis Center. 

Sunday, December 6th, the Music Center presents their Christmas Chorale Concert at 7 p.m. in our Chapel.  This concert will be repeated on December 13th at Bethany Lutheran Church in Cushing, MN.

Friday, December 11th, the two Music Center Orchestras will present their Christmas Concert at 7 p.m. in our Chapel.

The 8th Annual Franciscan Community Volunteers will host their Christmas Open House on December 6th,  from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Franciscan Welcoming House (1600 11th Ave. South, St. Cloud, MN.)

The other day I went to the Pottery shop for my first and last time.  Pictured is Sr. Tonie standing beside the kiln her father donated to St. Francis High School in the middle 1960s.  Soon the kiln will have a new home.

Pax et Bonum. (Peace and All Good)                                                                                                                         
May the Lord, bless us and all our brothers and sisters throughout the world.                                                    Sister Mary Lou 

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