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Dear Friends in Christ:

Where has the summer gone? It seems like the kids just got out of school and now they are getting ready to start school again! With that said, please, please, please be sure to enroll your children in Religious Education. Every single school age child should be enrolled in our Youth Formation program or in a Catholic School. I would especially ask for your help in letting other parents know. If you know of a child who is not registered or has not previously received religious instruction, please invite and encourage the family to do so. All children are welcome here at SJV (yes, even if they are not Catholic!). We want all children to learn about God and experience the grace of growing in the Lord. If you know of a Catholic Family that may not always make it to mass every week, do them a favor and invite them to come to mass with your family. If you know of a family that does not have a church home or perhaps are Catholic but don’t belong to any parish, invite them to join us here at SJV. If you know a family and you have lost track of them or haven’t seen in a while, especially since the floods, reach out to them and see how they are doing.
In the coming weeks, we want to reach out to our families who experienced damage to their homes in the floods. We would like to offer these families the opportunity to have their homes blessed. If the home has been repaired or is nearing completion, we would be happy to have one of our deacons, lay ministers, Fr. Clark or myself come and offer a prayer of blessing for the home and the family. We know that some of our families will not be back in their homes for some time to come. When these families are ready, we will come and pray with them too. Details on how to register to have a home blessing will be in the bulletin and on our webpage in the next few weeks.
As you can tell, the road construction on Memorial Drive has arrived at Nottingham Oaks Drive. We are working with our traffic officers and others to facilitate the traffic and congestion as much as possible. I know it is a hassle and a headache, but we will do our very best to make it less painful. Unfortunately, construction and road work are part of life in Houston and there is no escaping it. On the other side of the equation, remember to thank God that our city is able to make these improvements, pray for the safety of the workers and that all of us may grow in patience while dealing with traffic. When you get angry or frustrated, offer up your sufferings to the Lord and think how nice it is going to be when it is completed! One small suggestion is, if possible, consider car-pooling; invite a friend to ride to mass with you and your family. Another suggestion for those who don’t live too far away is walking or riding your bike to mass. A number of our parishioners actually do walk and ride their bikes to church. As a kid, I rode my bike four miles (one way) to Mass every Sunday morning. It is economical, healthy and an ecologically friendly thing to do.
This coming week is our Parish Feast Day. Come and join us in celebrating the Feast Day of St. John Vianney, our patron saint. We will have a wonderful mass and then a parish dinner following in the Activity Center. The dinner is free and open to all. There will also be entertainment for kids, adults and folks of all ages. Come and celebrate this great feast! Bring your family and join other families in thanking God for the gift of our parish and the gift of so great a priest and disciple of the Lord, St. John Marie Vianney! See you at the Feast Day celebrations!

In Pace Christi,
Fr. Troy Gately