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Saturday, November 1, is the Solemnity of All Saints. Because it falls on a Saturday this year, the Bishops of the United States have dispensed us from the obligation to assist at a Mass for that feast. Although we are not obliged to assist at Mass for this Solemnity this year, it is important to remember and give thanks for all the Saints in Heaven and ask their intercession as we seek to be counted among their number at the end of our earthly pilgrimage. “This perfect life with the Most Holy Trinity – this communion of life and love with the Trinity, with the Virgin Mary, the angels and all the blessed – is called ‘Heaven.’ Heaven is the ultimate end and fulfillment of the deepest human longings, the state of supreme, definitive happiness” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1024).
Sunday, November 2, is the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed or, as it is more commonly called, All Souls' Day. Indeed, the entire month of November is dedicated to praying for those who at their death were not yet ready to be ushered into the presence of Love Himself. “All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of Heaven . . . The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1030-1031). Remember to pray for all our beloved dead, that God “forgive whatever sins they may have committed through human weakness and . . . grant them everlasting peace” (Order of Christian Funerals, 175). We observe All Souls' Day in our parishes with the Vigil Mass on Saturday, November 1, at 8:00 PM in Elmwood as well as Masses on Sunday morning, November 2, at 8:30 AM in Boyceville and 10:30 AM in Spring Valley.
The contract was signed this week with Kulp's of Stratford (www.kulproof.com) to replace the leaking roof of Sacred Heart Church in Spring Valley. Work is anticipated to begin in November.
Adding to his already impressive and varied resume of service in our Diocese of La Crosse Brother Michael Mandernach, CSPX, recently published a history of his religious community, the Brothers of Saint Pius X. This diocesan community of consecrated life was founded in 1951 by the Bishop of La Crosse, John Patrick Treacy. In his Forward to the book, Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Apostolic Signatura in the Vatican writes: "It remains only to express my heartfelt esteem and gratitude to Brother Michael Mandernach for a work well done. Together as Brothers is a worthy record of the action of the Holy Spirit in the community of the Brothers of Saint Pius X. It is an account told with the truth and love of one who, from his youth and now for some 60 years, has cooperated faithfully and generously with the Holy Spirit in response to the call to the apostolic religious life as a Brother. As a native son of the Diocese of La Crosse, who was deeply honored to be a priest of the Diocese of La Crosse and to be its Bishop, I offer heartfelt gratitude to Brother Michael for the steadfastness with which he worked on the history of the Brothers of Saint Pius X, since that day in 1996 when I first asked him to provide for the Diocese and for the Church a written record of this important chapter of her history."
For more information regarding purchasing a copy of the history of the Brothers of Saint Pius X please contact the Central Office (715.778.5519 or email@example.com). Brother Michael is retired in residence at Spring Valley.