St. Joseph Catholic Church, Clayton MO

106 N. Meramec Avenue – Clayton MO 63105 – Parish Office (314) 726-1221

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – May 30, 2020

Dear friends,

This Sunday we celebrate the Solemnity of Pentecost and so call to mind the gift of the Holy Spirit upon the Church. We recall that after the Risen Lord ascended to heaven, He did not abandon us but sent us the Holy Spirit to be with us always.

This feast day that the Church celebrates today calls to mind the event whereby the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles gathered in prayer in the upper room. The Acts of the Apostles details what happened on this occasion: “When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim” (Acts 2:1-4).

We receive the promised gift of the Holy Spirit in the Sacrament of Baptism and in the Sacrament of Confirmation we receive an intensification of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit encourages us in our weakness and strengthens us to witness to Christ in our day to day lives. While there is indeed suffering and uncertainty at the present time, we take consolation in the fact that the Spirit of God remains with us to comfort us in our need.

As we make our way into the month of June, let us pray that the Holy Spirit will give us His grace, so that we can experience in an ever more profound way the fruits of the Holy Spirit which Saint Paul the Apostle describes as “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, [and] self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).

In Christ,
Father Bené

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – May 24, 2020

Dear friends,

Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

As we continue making our way through the latter days of the season of Easter, we pause on this Sunday to celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. We know that after He was raised from the dead to new life, the Risen Lord assured His disciples that even though He would depart from them He would never abandon them but would send them the Holy Spirit to be with them always.

In these final weeks of the season of Easter, perhaps we can continue prayerfully reflecting upon the fact that even though the Risen Lord is not present to us in the same way as He was in the days following His Resurrection, He is just as present to us through the Sacraments and by His Spirit that He has given us to strengthen us in our faith.

Renovated parish hall restrooms

I am pleased to inform you that the parish hall restrooms have been renovated and that the hall, along with its kitchen and the meeting room, has been repainted. I am also pleased to inform you that work has been underway in the plastering and painting of the vestibules of the church.

Prayer for peace of heart

Even though we continue to face uncertainty in our community, our country, and our world, we continue to pray for the peace that only Christ can give, a peace that rests on the sure and certain hope that He alone can provide us with all that we need in this life with a view to the life to come.

In Christ,
Father Bené

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – May 17, 2020

Dear friends,

Resumption of publicly celebrated Masses
I am pleased to inform you that the Archbishop has given permission for publicly celebrated Masses to resume on Monday, May 18, with appropriate social distancing. The following are some of the highlights of the instructions that have been provided by the Archdiocese:

• the Archbishop continues to give a dispensation to all Catholics of the Archdiocese who are not
able to come to Mass because of risk of illness or age
• the Sign of Peace will not be offered
• Holy Communion will not be distributed via the Chalice
• floor markings six feet apart will be in place up the main aisle to facilitate proper social distancing
for the reception of Holy Communion
• participants are obliged to wear a mask
• stationery baskets will be used for the offertory collection

Please know that this past week the church and parish hall have been cleaned in preparation.

The promised gift of the Holy Spirit
In anticipation of our resumption of publicly celebrated Masses, it almost seems providential that our readings from the Sacred Scriptures this Sunday focus especially on the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. We know that, during the time the Risen Lord was with His disciples, He promised them that, even though He would ascend to His Father, He would send them the Holy Spirit to be with them always.

We receive the Holy Spirit especially through the Sacraments. The gift of the Holy Spirit to God’s holy people is a constant reminder to us that God will never abandon us, that He will always be with us, and that He will always give us His grace. The key, of course, lay in asking for His help by responding in our hearts to Him and to His love.

As we move through this week, let us pray for all who are suffering at the present time, especially those who are sick and those who are unemployed, and let us pray for the blessings of God in a special way to all people.

In Christ,
Father Bené

Parish Announcement from Father Bene’

Saint Joseph Parish
March 15, 2020

Dear friends,

Publicly celebrated Masses will resume in church beginning on Monday morning, May 18th.

You are kindly reminded of the reopening guidelines of Saint Louis County and the Archdiocese of Saint Louis which can be found on their respective websites.

Let us pray for the health and well-being of all as we move forward together in faith.

Sincerely in Christ,

Rev. Philip J. Bené, J.C.D.

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – May 10, 2020

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson Grants General Permission to Resume Public Masses Beginning May 18

Dear friends,

Fifth Sunday of Easter
As we continue making our way through the season of Easter, we continue reflecting on the new life that the Lord Jesus has given us by His Resurrection. While He eventually ascended to His Father, He did not abandon us but remains with us by His Spirit that He has given us.

During His time among His disciples, the Lord Jesus encouraged them in their faith. Indeed, in the Gospel today we hear Him say to them, “Do not let your hearts be troubled” (John 14:1). These words He spoke to them He also speaks to us as He assures us that He is with us, that He will never abandon us, and that He will be with us always. Although we live in a time of uncertainty, we have faith that the Lord Jesus is with us through it all, accompanying us and giving us His grace.

Please know that soon we will be receiving word regarding the resumption of publicly celebrated Masses in the churches of the Archdiocese. We continue joining in prayerful solidarity as we move forward in faith with the hope of returning to worship together as a community of faith.

Mother’s Day
This Sunday in our country we celebrate Mother’s Day. We pray for all mothers, who have given us life and love that we may show them reverence and love. We pray for all mothers who have lost a child through death that their faith may give them hope, and their family and friends support and console them. Finally, we pray for all mothers who have died, that God may bring them into the joy of his kingdom.

On this day we pray to God, that He will bless all mothers in Saint Joseph Parish, that they may be strengthened as Christian mothers; that the example of their faith and love will shine forth; and that we, their sons and daughters, will honor them always with a spirit of profound respect.

In Christ,
Father Bené

Food Pantry Needs

Did you know that our local St. Vincent de Paul Society sponsors an onsite food pantry at St. Joseph’s in Clayton? The pantry serves many inner city residents and others in the area. Sadly, the food pantry is nearly empty and needs replenishment.

As a good neighbor, can you help by donating dry goods, cereal, rice, pasta – canned goods, vegetables, fruit, pasta sauce – cleaning supplies – dish soap, laundry detergent? If you go to the store, or are able to order groceries online, could you try and pick up a few extras to share with those who need them? You can place your donated bag of goods inside the hallway located at the north-side door of St. Joseph’s Church, 106 N. Meramec. Volunteers will assist by delivering the collection of donated goods to those in need.

Feel free to share this message with others. Thank you for your generosity and stay safe and healthy!

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – May 3, 2020

Dear friends in Christ,

This weekend we celebrate the Fourth Sunday of Easter which is also known as Good Shepherd Sunday. It is known as Good Shepherd Sunday because of the fact that on this Sunday we hear the Good Shepherd discourse which is taken from the tenth chapter of the Gospel of Saint John.

Here Jesus provides us with a paroimia, or parable, in which He likens Himself to a good shepherd who takes care of His sheep. As a good shepherd, He enters the sheepfold through the gate, He calls them by name, and He leads them out (John 10:2-3). He is also the sheep gate: those who enter through Him will be saved and will come and go out and find pasture (John 10:9).

For us as followers of Christ who find ourselves still in the midst of the present pandemic, we are invited and encouraged to entrust ourselves to Jesus the Good Shepherd who calls each of us by name, who provides for us all that we need, who saves us, and who gives us eternal life. So much does Jesus love us that for us His sheep He laid down His life and raised Himself up (John 10:15-17) and thus has provided for us the example of perseverance in the face of trials (I Peter 2:21).

While we continue to face uncertainty in our lives, in our community, and in our world, Jesus is with us, accompanying us, caring for us, and providing for us. Ultimately, our faith rests in Him, He who alone is the way, and the truth, and the life for all people (John 14:6).

As we celebrate this Good Shepherd Sunday, we pray for all those who suffering at the present time, that the Risen Lord will be with them in a special way. We also pray for all medical personnel and all caregivers, that God will continue to strengthen them. Finally, we pray for ourselves, that we will continue to persevere in our faith as we know that God is with us through Son who gives a share in His life.

In Christ,
Father Bené