Notes from Fr. Michael – September 3, 2017

Dear Parishioners,
The terrible destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey continues to disrupt the lives of so many in Texas and surrounding areas. These natural disasters bring not only the destruction of property, infrastructure and the precious gift of human life but
also the need for our assistance. Our thoughts, prayers and friendship go out to our sisters and brothers impacted by this hurricane. All life is a precious gift that is vulnerable to the forces of nature, no matter where we may live. Parishioners wishing to assist with a financial donation to aid relief efforts may do so either directly to Catholic Charities or by check to Saint Mary Parish, and these will be combined with other donations forwarded to Catholic Charities of Galveston-Houston.

Monday we celebrate Labor Day as a nation. For some it is the last celebration of summer before heading back to the opening of school. Living in our times, it is easy to forget the value and importance organized labor played in the lives of so many Americans of these past many years. Many of our ancestors came to the United States in the 1800s looking
for freedom and a better way of living for themselves and other family members. Our area of the country had many emerging industries and factories that needed workers to run the
machinery and produce the goods from these factories and mills. Once while on a tour of the Lowell mills, it was pointed out that there was not enough labor in New England to satisfy the needs of the mills and factories, and so recruiting of poor Europeans began with the promise of prosperity in America.

Our immigrant ancestors usually worked six days a week with low wages and very poor living conditions. Many were taken advantage of by the system, and it was through organized labor that many of the benefits we all enjoy today came through tough negotiations and sacrifices. I appreciate and am thankful for all those who have gone before and given so much of  themselves so that we enjoy a better life than they never had in Europe. May we always remember and not forget.

I have been in conversation with a contractor looking at the poor condition of the sidewalk area in front of the church. Many parishioners have pointed out the hazards associated with the deterioration of the walkway. Our telephone system has failed twice within the past two weeks, and this also needs to be addressed as well as some other maintenance issues. Normal wear and tear happens in our homes as well as churches. Hopefully these items and a few others can be taken care of sooner rather than later.
May the Lord continue to pour forth His Love, Blessings and Graces upon all parishioners as we celebrate not only Labor Day, but the beginning of a new season (almost) within the parish.