St. Joseph Catholic Church, Clayton MO

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

Notes from the Pastor’s Pen – January 8, 2023

Epiphany House Blessing 

If you wish, you can celebrate Epiphany at home with a blessing using chalk to write the initials of the magi’s traditional names (Casper, Melchior, Balthasar), four crosses, and the new year’s numerals on your doorframe.

Leader: In the (+) name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. We sign this doorway with four crosses and the numerals of the new year. [20 + C + M + B + 23] Let us pray: May Christ bless this house! ALL: Amen!

Each room of the house is sprinkled with holy water.

Living room: Where two or three are gathered in your name, Lord, you are present. Bless this room, O Lord. ALL: Amen! Kitchen: Give us this day our daily bread. Bless this room, O Lord. ALL: Amen!

Dining room: Prepare us for the heavenly banquet. Bless this room, O Lord. ALL: Amen!

Bedrooms: Stay with us Lord, when night has come. Bless this room, O Lord. ALL: Amen!

Bathroom: Cleanse us from all sin. Bless this room, O Lord. ALL: Amen!

All return to the front door to pray together.

Leader: Let us pray as Jesus taught us: Our Father . . . The leader sprinkles all present with holy water. Bless this household through all days to come, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, forever and ever. ALL: Amen!

Copyright © J. S. Paluch Co., Inc.


Notes from the Pastor’s Pen – January 1, 2023


Today’s readings include another account of the story of Jesus’ birth. The reading from the book of Numbers reminds us that we are blessed. We are looked upon with kindness and grace. The psalm and Galatians remind us of the blessings given through God’s Son. Luke tells of our ultimate blessing, that Mary, a human being like us, gave birth to a child who is God’s Son. Mary, a young mother, watches all that is happening around the birth of her son. She listens as the shepherds bring messages from angels, a message she also received from an angel, about her son. Yet Mary remains silent. She keeps all this news about her son to herself. She reflects on all these experiences. The only thing she shares is the name of her son, Jesus, a name given him before he was even conceived. Her silence leaves us wondering if this is how one responds to such a great blessing.

© J. S. Paluch Co., Inc.

Notes from the Pastor’s Pen – December 25, 2022

What All the Waiting Has Been For

Today’s readings are as familiar to most of us as the carols we sing and the commercials that overwhelm this holiday season. Often Christmas finds us tired, struggling with preparations and expectations. What we really want to feel is joy and peace. The stress of preparation, of waiting, is reflected in both Isaiah and Paul’s letter to Titus. Luke tells us of the exhaustion that Mary and Joseph felt: a young pregnant wife and her husband, forced to travel just as she is about to give birth, unable even to find a room to stay in. It must have been miserable. They must have been afraid. In the midst of this exhaustion, misery, and fear, a child is born, a Son is given. The world is then filled with light and hope, joy and peace. In that moment they, and we, know what all the waiting has been for.

© J. S. Paluch Co., Inc.