From The Font
"You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do."
Don't we all… Don't we all think as human beings do? Of course we do! We are, after all, human beings! We can't see the wisdom in God's "foolishness." It's not that our thinking is "bad," it's just very, very limited. If Jesus doesn't "have to" suffer, why should He? If He can destroy His enemies, why shouldn't He? If He can right the wrongs, fix the broken, heal the wounded and make the yankees get along with the southerners… why shouldn't He?
But that's thinking as humans do, not as God does. God's plan is not about making this world a better place. This world is only a "good" place for the first two chapters of the Book of Genesis. Once Eve eats the fruit and Adam joins in her sin - the world is broken. Then we get Sodom, King Saul and Pilate. St. Paul describes the world as "groaning." Every one of us has an unconscious intuition that this world really fails to satisfy. There's evil here. There's strife. There's suffering. Is this really the best God can do?
Not at all! That's why Jesus comes to open up the pearly gates and to invite the first and the last. He wants us to enter into the eternal life of Heaven. This world is merely a means to that end... But it's a means that matters. It's a preparation for judgement. The effects of this life are so potent that God Himself stepped out of eternity and inserted Himself into this world in order to give us the tools that we need to be ready for judgement…
And so when we face this world - it's good and it's bad; it's suffering and it's blessing. We will naturally think as human beings think. We will think that suffering is bad and to be avoided. We will think that happiness is good and to be sought after for its own sake. We will think that if a little sin or disobedience brings about "a greater good" then it can and should be accommodated. We think this way because we are limited. Asbestos prevents fire and so why not use it? Conflict is uncomfortable so why challenge someone who is living in sin? Islam is "officially" peaceful, so why not live and let live?
God's thinking is unlimited. He sees the whole picture. And so we must humble ourselves, accept whatever God offers us as a means of readiness for eternal life, and keep our eyes fixed on the prize that lies at the end of the race!
Insights From Second Street
As with almost everything, modern misunderstandings have at their heart a grain of gospel truth! Labor Day began as an effort to press communist ideas upon the American People. But at the heart of the communist idol of "the worker" is the truth that God does indeed bless the work of our hands. Work is, in fact, a central part of Pope St. John Paul II's understanding of the human person. Our work gives focus and mission to our lives.
In fact, the entirely modern phenomenon of "jobs" that don't actually require "work" may well be responsible for the sense of purposelessness that many people feel in the modern world. The modern phenomenon of the welfare state where not just a few people, but entire populations, live without any occupation at all is easily linked with depression, aggression disorders, crime and dramatically reduced life-spans.
Work is such a good thing for all of us. Work creates. The feeling that comes with accomplishing something - anything - is almost spiritual. Whether it's a woodworking project, a garden, some general household cleaning or a task well done at work, there's a great sense of what psychologists call self-actualization when the day ends and we have something to show for it. Children experience this with simple things like drawings, sandcastles and school assignments - but as adults, we tend to associate the effort that we put into something with the satisfaction that we get out of it. And, of course, we've all have that sinking feeling when we spend hours working on some project (taxes, a web form, etc) and something doesn't save properly… There's nothing quite like that horror when you see an empty screen and realize you have nothing to show for the last hours of effort.
Work is humanizing. It gives us a sense of value, purpose and accomplishment. It gives us perspective as to the meaning of time and it's limitedness. It points us toward eternity when work will no longer be toilsome.
The reduction of work to "labor" has been one of the great tragedies of the modern era. Labor Unions and the urbanization of peoples has created an utterly new phenomenon: entire populations who don't know how to work, to negotiate or to provide for themselves. Never before have people grown up in environments where - literally - no one around them has ever held a job of any sort. This dehumanization is the fruit of the basic misunderstandings that come with so many modern thinkers. Just because it seems to make sense, doesn't mean it does. As the scriptures remind us "all that glitters is not gold."
PARISH SUPPER & CCD BEGIN 9/3 Our first Parish Supper, Wed. Night Adult Catechism & CCD night will be Wednesday, Sept. 3rd, at St. Mary’s. We’ll have food for free in the Cafeteria beginning at 5p (donations welcome). At 6p, the kids will go to CCD and Fr. Ryan will give a talk in the Chapel for all who are interested. Invite other parishioners and/or your non-Catholic friends to attend!
PARISH OFFICE CLOSED Monday, Sept. 1st, the Parish Office will be closed in observance of Labor Day. The Office will re-open Tuesday, Sept. 2nd, at 8am. We pray that everyone has fun-filled and safe holiday!
ST. MARY’S FOOTBALL The 1st regular season SMS Football game will be Thurs., 9/4, against Lakeview. Kickoff is at 7p in Turpin Stadium. Pray for a safe, fun and victorious season. GO TIGERS!
FIRST FRIDAY & FIRST SATURDAY The First Friday & Saturday of each month are kept in honor of the Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Adoration on First Friday begins after morning Mass and continues until Benediction at 5:15p. Sign-up at the back of the Church if you can watch with the Lord for an hour. First Saturday Mass and Benediction are at the usual time, 8a.
MOTHER-DAUGHTER CHAMPAGNE BRUNCH In honor of the Birthday of Mary, Saturday, Sept. 6th, the MBIC will host a Mother-Daughter Champagne Brunch in the Parish Hall at 9a. It will be a day to celebrate the gift that all women are to the Lord and to the Church. All Mothers/Daughters and Grandmothers/Granddaughters are invited to attend. There is no cost to attend. The brunch will be catered, so a RSVP is appreciated but not required. Contact the Parish Office at 352-3422 to RSVP.
NEW LAY-LED SPIRITUALITY COURSE Mrs. Eve James and Mrs. Kathy Merrick will lead a small group spirituality course based on the teachings of St. Ignatius of Loyola entitled “Lord, Teach me to Pray.” The groups will meet weekly for 12 consecutive weeks beginning in September. One group will meet at Monday 3:30p and the other on Thursday at 6:30p. The course is not operated by the Minor Basilica; it is lay-led. For more information, contact Mrs. Eve James at (318) 352-4391.
TAA GUN RAFFLE The St. Mary’s Tiger Athletic Association is sponsoring a year long gun raffle. There are 105 prizes and every ticket has 105 chances to win. Guns range from 9mm handguns to hunting rifles to Shotguns. A complete list of prizes and draw dates can be obtained from St. Mary’s School, the MBIC Parish Office, or from any member of the TAA. Tickets are limited and cost $100 each. The 1st drawing will be Wednesday, October 1st.
- Mon, 9/1, Labor Day - Parish Office CLOSED & St. Mary’s NO SCHOOL
- Tues, 9/2, SMS Parent VIRTUS Training, 6p @ SMS Library
- Wed, 9/3, 1st Parish Supper, CCD Class, & Wed. Night Adult Catechism, 5-7:30p @ St. Mary’s
- Thu, 9/4, SMS vs. Lakeview, 7p @ Turpin Stadium
- Fri, 9/5, First Friday, Benediction of the MBS, 5:15p
- Sat, 9/6, First Saturday, Vocations Club of Natch. Meeting, 8:45a
- Sat, 9/6, Mother-Daughter Champagne Brunch, 9a @ Parish Hall
- Tue, 9/9, Magnificat Pilgrimage Meeting, 6p @ Parish Hall
- Wed, 9/10, CCD Class & Wed. Night Adult Catechism, 6-7:30p @ St. Mary’s
- Fri, 9/12, SMS vs. Hamilton Christian, 7p (Away)
- Wed, 9/17, CCD Class & Wed. Night Adult Catechism, 6-7:30p @ St. Mary’s
- Fri, 9/19, SMS vs. Winnfield, 7p (Away)
- Mon, 9/22 - Fri, 9/26, SMS Homecoming Week
- Wed, 9/24, CCD Class & Wed. Night Adult Catechism, 6-7:30p @ St. Mary’s
- Thu, 9/25, Women's Resource Center Gala, 5:30p
- Fri, 9/26, Homecoming Game - SMS vs. Arcadia, 7p @ Turpin Stadium
Within the Sanctuary
Sat, 8/30 4p Elaine Bacon, (Lector) • Kathleen Hicks, Jimmy Gunter, (EMHC-CI) • D.Bennett, J.Friedel, (Altar Boys)
Sun, 8/31 9a Rebecca Lavespere, (Lector) • Jeff Green, (EMHC-CI) • James & Betty Durham, (EMHC-CH) • A.&C.Lirette, S.&T.Lirette, (Altar Boys)
Sun, 8/31 11a Joe Payne Williams, (Lector) • Patsy Melder, (EMHC-CI) • Jean Gill, Linda Lee, (EMHC-CH) • W.Lee, A.&J.Parker, (Altar Boys)
Sat, 9/6 4p Kathleen Hicks, (Lector) • David Bouchie, Micky Hennigan, (EMHC-CI) • D.&M.Thibodaux, (Altar Boys)
Sun, 9/7 9a Joe Cunningham Jr., (Lector) • Michael King, (EMHC-CI) • James & Alice Barrios, (EMHC-CH) • A.Behrendsen, R.&R.Cunningham, (Altar Boys)
Sun, 9/7 11a Gilen Norwood, (Lector) • Lucile Ingram, (EMHC-CI) • Chris & Jennifer Maggio, (EMHC-CH) • S.Maggio, J.Burrell, W.Mayeux, (Altar Boys)
*Altar Boys who are not scheduled may serve if space permits. Come to the Sacristy 10 minutes before Mass.
Memorials & Prayer Intentions
- Sat 4p: Red & Sadie Thomas
- Sun 9a: Cyril G. Mouch, Sr.
- Sun 11a: Richard Ragland
- Sun 5p: Pro Populo
- Mon 6:30a: Janell de Vargas
- Tue 6:30a: Deceased Members of Ray & Gwen Ponthieux Families
- Wed 6:30a: Joseph & Vicki Lowrey
- Thu 6:30a: Harry Gongre, Jr.
- Fri 6:30a: Burl and Ora Lee Young
- Sat 8a: Mary Jean Thomas
Pope Francis' Prayer Intentions for this Month are that refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights. And that, Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.
Please pray for our Recently Deceased: Mr. Michael Bouchie
Please pray for our Sick & Suffering: Lolette Allen, William Lynn Basco, Lauren Bienvenu, Tripp Bostick, Chad Bouchie, Mar-Lou Brasher, Cayleigh Braud, Marion Brossette, Flo Brouillette, Bailey Byrd, Carolyn Carter, Marie Charleville, Lauren Clancey, Emilia Cofio, Woody Cox, Kim Cunningham, Lela Mae Dalme, Joe Davis, John DeFee, Richard DeVargas, RJ Ducote, Angela Eversall, Marguerite Felchle, Tom Foshee, Reba Friday, Paula Gagymad, Kramer Gahagan, Vicki Gahagan, Patsy Gallion, Sophie Gill, Christi Gootee, Joyce Hayne, Deborah G. Hernandez, Sue Van Hook, Kalita Jones, EvaGrace Keyser, Gary Kilgore, Martha LaCaze, Jheanny Ladao, Jaden Eli Lodridge, Patricia Loftin, Joseph Longo, Mary Frances Lowrey, Lisa Mack, Dominic Majorie, Danny Manuel, Jack McCain Jr., Faris Michael, Meg Michael, Lacey Mitchum, Mary Moss, Shane Niette, Mary Odom, Sharon Roach, Wes Rollo, Makaehan Ross, Shirley Roy, Lillian Ryals, Joseph Ryan, Donna Slaughter, Lil Taylor, Clay Thompson, Ren Todtenbier, Brent Trichel, Rosalind Trussell, Patricia Vazquez, Julien Vienne, Ruthie J. Wallboughly, Jessica Warner, Janine Waters, & Glen & Mary Williams