All of us have been moved by the devastating images that have come from the Southeastern Texas area these past few weeks. Centered in Houston, and the surrounding area, all of us share the hurt and pain of the families there, and our prayers are with them all. Many of us wish to do more, and our parish will do more by having a special second collection the weekend of September 16 and 17, 2107. We ask you to be generous, as parishes all over our diocese will join in this collection, and forward our proceeds to Catholic Charities in Texas, who will best know where to concentrate the aid.

We are mindful that there are many in need, and our collection for the Deacon John Rigley Food Pantry on September 9 and 10 (this weekend) will proceed as scheduled, assuring our continued efforts to feed Milford’s hungry families will be met. We know we are asking more of your generosity, but these extraordinary circumstances require this additional response. We thank you in advance for your continued prayers and your generous response.

We are still looking for volunteers to assist in our programs for grade 7 and 8 religious education, and grade 9 and 10 Confirmation Preparation. Grade 7 and 8 will meet monthly at Saint Agnes Church and hall on Tuesdays from 5-6:30 beginning October 3. Grades 9 and 10 will meet monthly at Saint Mary Church, beginning with 4:30 Sunday Mass through 6:45 PM. Grade 9 and 10 will begin October 1. We are scheduling programs so that all will experience both the Saint Agnes and Saint Mary worship sites, they are both sites of our one parish. We hope our fine young people can help lead the way to our parish becoming one.

Beginning Sunday, October 8, 2017, there will be the first of three parent/child experiences this year for our first grade students. This will be held at Saint Agnes Church and hall from 2:00 to 4:30. We hope to provide a beginning experience for the student and the parent, outlining for them what is important for their beginning faith formation, and how the parents can help their child in this process. All parents and first graders are welcome, regardless of where they go to school. Whether your child is in Catholic School, Public School, or private school, or home-schooled, all can benefit from this program.

Underlining all of our religious education: our emphasis that regular effort to worship with our parish community is the key to building a vibrant community of faith. This is why the Confirmation program begins with Mass each time, this is why special Masses will be held during the year for the 7th and 8th grade. This is why all religious education will include time in Church. Of course, parents are the key, in a world and community that makes so many other demands on theirs and their child’s time.

All of us need to be a part of this effort. Our parish needs to be a warm and welcoming place, where families can feel a part and participate. We all need to invite our neighbors and friends to join us more often; they are also part of who we are. This is not easy; this is difficult. If we are to be the Gospel people we are called to be, then we must rise to the challenge. Let the message of the Risen Lord Jesus resound all around our community: The new life He promised is real, this new life is celebrated here each week, and we all should long to be a part of it.