Dear Friends:

The merger of St. Mary’s and St. Agnes’ Parishes into our new parish of Precious Blood is now just shy of two months old. From my perspective I am grateful for the spirit of cooperation and the flexibility that has been shown by you, the people of the parish. Of course, from time to time, situations arise that are awkward and some strong feelings can be expressed, but I suppose that is what can be expected whenever we are asked to change, to adapt, and to adjust. We are all in this together and it will be successful only to the extent that we, clergy and parishioners alike, are willing to adjust and change our ways of thinking and, to some extent, our ways of doing things.

As we move forward, we are taking a careful look at the physical plants at both churches. Both plants are approaching or have exceeded sixty years of age and both are in need of some repairs and improvements. Of course, this will cost some money, but at the moment, the financial resources of the parish should be able to cover the needed expenses. As of this writing, I am in the process of preparing the letter that will go to all parishioners of Precious Blood, asking your support of the 2017 Annual Collection. This collection may be something new to the people at St. Agnes, but it is quite familiar to the people of St. Mary. The proceeds of this collection go entirely to maintenance and improvement of the parish grounds and facilities.

This is the time of year when families adjust to the changes that come with the end of summer. Many college students have already left or will be leaving this week to begin a new year of studies. We wish them well and hope that they have a profitable and enjoyable time away at school. We remind them at the same time not to neglect their faith relationship

with God. Spend some time each day in prayer and become involved with the Catholic campus ministry at the schools they attend. Of course, here in Milford and in surrounding towns, the public schools and our own St. Mary’s School will open for the new school year next Wednesday, August 30. We wish all the children of the parish success in the coming academic year.

This weekend at St. Mary’s we welcome our missionary preacher, a Dominican Father, who will share some of what his order is doing in the missionary field. He will ask our support of their work and the proceeds of the second collection will be sent to assist his order. The missionary appeal at St. Agnes will take place the weekend of September 30 and October 1. A representative of the Holy Cross Fathers will be with us and the second collection taken that weekend at St. Agnes will be sent to assist his order as well.

Finally, we live in stressful times, times of upheaval, violence and the threat of war, both home here in the United States and abroad. Our prayer is that peace will prevail, that cool heads and hearts will restrain any temptation to lash out at others for whatever reason.