CtR Update From Fr. Sean - July 24
Parish Update – Friday, July 24
Happy Friday, friends and neighbors. As we prepare for what looks like it will be a soggy weekend we can find inspiration to keep going in these pandemic days from no less of an authority figure than that of King Solomon, who appears in our first reading this weekend on the
Sunday in Ordinary Time
A bit of background on Solomon: He is described as being a “mere youth,” probably someone we would call a young adult. He is the son of King David, and the time we are talking about is roughly 900 years before Christ. He has recently ascended to the throne of his father, much sooner than would have been expected over his older brothers.
When the Lord appears to him in a dream and invites him to “ask something of me and I will give it to you,” he does not take the easy way out. He doesn’t ask for a long reign, wealth, power, or the removal of his enemies. He simply asks for
“an understanding heart.”
That is why we still speak today of the “wisdom of Solomon.” He knew that was more valuable than any so-called power of the world.
What would you ask for if the Lord appeared to you in a dream and invited you to request anything you like? Would wisdom be high on your list? May the Lord give us all “understanding hearts” so that we might always know and follow his counsel.
Lots of important news to share with you this week, so let’s get right to it:
• First, we again invite you to please join us for Mass
via our livestream
on Sunday at 9 a.m. on both our Facebook and YouTube pages. You can find the link to the livestream at
, and in addition, you’ll find there both a worship aid and a link to the Scripture readings to follow along with Mass. And you can make your weekly offertory contribution online at
. If you’d like to join us in person for Mass, we welcome you on Saturday at 5 p.m., or Sunday at 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
• Next, I want you to be on the lookout for a postcard from us here at CtR. Yes, that’s right – you’re about to get mail! We’re
undertaking a census of the parish
and the postcard you’ll receive is the first step.
Why a census? Just like the government takes a national census every 10 years (I hope you have participated in 2020), we at the parish are trying to determine just who is out there. We have 7,000 or so families on our registration rolls, but I suspect our actual number is far different.
During these months when we’ve been social distancing due to the pandemic, we in the parish office have reached out to thousands of parishioners by phone and email. It’s been great to connect with so many of you, and I’m grateful for the team of staff and volunteers who have made that outreach on behalf of the parish. So many of you have shared with me how much it meant for you to hear from us, and believe me, it’s been a blessing for us on the other end of the phone or correspondence, too. As I spoke about in a homily recently,
we are built for communion
with one another.
But in making those calls we have discovered that our current parish data system is woefully out-of-date. For as many calls as we made, we also were unable to connect with hundreds and hundreds of parishioners for whom we did not have a good contact point. Perhaps they have moved or changed phone numbers (or dropped their land line altogether, as many of us have done), and we never got notice of it in the office. It’s understandable that people might register at one point in time, but then forget notifying us of any changes not only address, phone, or email, but even in the number of family members living at home. I get it: life happens and we forget.
aims to help us update our records
so that we can communicate with you more effectively. How can we better serve your needs, especially in these days when we don’t see each other all that often? It’ll be very easy to complete the census – probably no more than five minutes or so. You’ll have the option to complete it in multiple ways: via a QR code you’ll find on the postcard, via a link in an email we will send to all those for whom we have an address, via the parish website, or yes, even by simply calling the office and talking to a real live human! I assure you everything is confidential and only for the use of CtR communications.
The postcard will explain more, and I’ll be back next week with a direct link and further information. For now, check your mailbox this coming week, and get ready to respond. It will be a great help to us in the parish so that we can help you stay connected to CtR.
Christ the Redeemer Catholic School
is preparing for the 2020-21 academic year and this week we announced our plans for the fall semester. Obviously the pandemic is impacting education a great deal, and we are blessed with a great staff and members of the community who have helped shape our plan for CtRCS with the safety of our students and teachers the utmost priority.
We will begin school on
Tuesday, Sept. 8
, the day after Labor Day, and we are offering parents the choice of either in-class instruction or virtual learning, what we are calling our Virtual Crusader Classroom, for their children. Our complete plan with all the details of what we’ll be doing can be found at
I’m grateful for the hard work and long hours that our staff put in to create this plan of learning for our students. Like everything to do with the coronavirus, it’s subject to change given developments and orders from the local and state level, as well as the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. We’ll monitor things and adjust as necessary, but I’m hopeful it will give parents and students some peace of mind and assurance that we will meet their needs and provide an outstanding and safe education regardless of the circumstances.
This will be our 7
year of CtRCS, and we’re still giving tours and accepting applications for this year in grades Pre-K – 8
. We’ve had quite a bit of interest from new families who are seeking a new learning environment for their children, and we welcome all to come discover what a gift that Catholic education offers. See that school website at
or call them at 281-469-8440 to learn more.
• Likewise we are making plans for Religious Education for the fall as well. In light of the pandemic, and with an eye to safety for all,
we will move to an entirely home-based catechesis for this RE year for children in PreK-3 through 6
. Youth Ministry (starting in 7
grade and including Confirmation in high school) will have an announcement soon on its plans for religious education faith formation instruction this fall.
For a number of years we have seen an uptick in families opting for home-based RE and so it only made sense that in this year of so much unpredictability that we make that the norm for our entire program for this 2020-21 RE year only, hopefully. After much consideration and study, our RE department recommended this course of action to me, and I agree it is in the best interest of all. It’s just not feasible or practical for us to bring children and catechists to campus in three separate sessions each week.
Our staff has developed a great program to assist parents in teaching the faith at home. It’s quite flexible, designed to meet the needs of busy families, but also keeps them connected with the parish. We’ll be providing an abundance of resources to everyone and there will be periodic check-in throughout the year. More information can be found at
. We’ll kick things off on September 20 with Catechetical Sunday so stay tuned for more information.
• Lastly, with all this talk about schooling, we are once again conducting
to collect school supplies for families in need in the local community and at our sister parish, Our Mother of Mercy, in Houston’s inner city. Yes, there’s still a great need for school supplies even in these days of different learning environments, so please help by bringing supplies to Mass over the next several weekends or dropping by the parish office during the week. We’ve partnered with Cypress Assistance Ministries (CAM) to get them to children in need and we’ll take a share of the material collected to Our Mother of Mercy as well. See our website at
for a list of items most in need and even a link to where you can order items on-line (very handy these days). CtR has always been generous in helping with Operation Backpack so let’s help out once again in this crazy year. There are plenty of sales going on now so when you’re at the store pick up a few school supplies and drop them by at any time. We’ll do the rest. Thanks!
St. James the Apostle
, whose feast day is tomorrow, pray for us!
Peace, Fr. Sean
Fr. Sean Horrigan
on Friday, July 24 at 3:42PM