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St. Nicholas of Myra

From an Article Published by Catholic News Agency

St. Nicholas of Myra On Dec. 6, the faithful commemorated a bishop in the early church who was known for generosity and love of children. Born in Lycia in Asia Minor around the late third or fourth century, St. Nicholas of Myra is more than just the inspiration for the modern-day Santa.

As a young man he is said to have made a pilgrimage to Palestine and Egypt in order to study in the school of the Desert Fathers. On returning some years later he was almost immediately ordained Bishop of Myra, which is now Demre, on the coast of modern-day Turkey. The bishop was imprisoned during the Diocletian persecution and only released when Constantine the Great came to power and made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire.

One of the most famous stories of the generosity of St. Nicholas says that he threw bags of gold through an open window in the house of a poor man to serve as dowry for the man’s daughters, who otherwise would have been forced into prostitution. The gold is said to have landed in the family’s shoes, which were drying near the fire. This is why children leave their shoes out by the door, or hang their stockings by the fireplace in the hopes of receiving a gift on the eve of his feast.

St. Nicholas is associated with Christmas because of the tradition that he had the custom of giving secret gifts to children. It is also conjectured that the saint, who was known to wear red robes and have a long white beard, was culturally converted into the large man with a reindeer-drawn sled full of toys because in German, his name is “San Nikolaus” which almost sounds like “Santa Claus.” In the East, he is known as St. Nicholas of Myra for the town in which he was bishop. But in the West he is called St. Nicholas of Bari because, during the Muslim conquest of Turkey in 1087, his relics were taken to Bari by the Italians. St Nicholas is the patron of children and of sailors. His intercession is sought by the shipwrecked, by those in difficult economic circumstances, and for those affected by fires. He died on December 6, 346.

On Retreat to Our Lady of Perpetual Help, St. Nicholas & St. Peter Churches

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CCD Students Learn About Advent

Last Sunday, December 1st, the CCD classes met in church with Father Blanda to learn about the Season of Advent. The students were taught the rich symbolism of the Advent Wreath and the need to keep the spirit of the Season of Advent holy and intact. It is difficult for children as well as adults to experience Advent when we are surrounded by the symbols of Christmas. It is next to impossible to shield our eyes in our modern age from the visible signs of Christmas as there are expectations for homes to be decorated for Christmas and department stores depicting all the trappings of Christmas even before Thanksgiving. We can rely on the church to keep us focused on the four weeks of Advent. In our liturgy we see the Advent Wreath, purple vestments and no sign of Christmas décor.

Last Sunday, December 1st, the CCD classes met in church with Father Blanda to learn about the Season of Advent. The students were taught the rich symbolism of the Advent Wreath and the need to keep the spirit of the Season of Advent holy and intact. It is difficult for children as well as adults to experience Advent when we are surrounded by the symbols of Christmas. It is next to impossible to shield our eyes in our modern age from the visible signs of Christmas as there are expectations for homes to be decorated for Christmas and department stores depicting all the trappings of Christmas even before Thanksgiving. We can rely on the church to keep us focused on the four weeks of Advent. In our liturgy we see the Advent Wreath, purple vestments and no sign of Christmas décor.

Catholic High Juniors Learn About the Sacred Liturgy

Mr. Justin Conover, CHS Director of Faith and Formation, taught a wonderful lesson on liturgical vestments and vessels used in the sacred liturgy. Our Catholic High students are enriched in the treasures of our faith each day.

Catholic High Juniors Learn About the Sacred Liturgy

 

Catholic High Students Participate in Baby Bottle Campaign

The CHS family is proud to present a check to the Unexpected Pregnancy Center for $1,265.67 as part our Baby Bottle Campaign for the month of October.

Catholic High Students Participate in Baby Bottle Campaign

Catholic High Students Hear from Two Well Known Authors on The Subject of “Self-Identity in Christ.”

Catholic High School had the pleasure of hosting two authors/national speakers on October 25th. The girls heard Ashley Wichlenski, author of "The Keeper of My Heart". The boys heard Chad Judice, author of three books, one being, "Waiting for Eli". Both authors spoke to our students about their self-identity in Christ.

Catholic High Students Hear from Two Well Known Authors on The Subject of “Self-Identity in Christ.”

A Reflection on The Advent Wreath

By Eileen Boudoin, Christian Formation Director

A Reflection on The Advent Wreath Father Blanda recently gave a presentation to our CCD students on the Advent wreath. It was an informative session on the symbolization of the wreath – the colors, number of candles, etc. However, what struck me was the significance of each candle and the “emotion” it represents. The candle for the first week of Advent symbolizes HOPE. The second candle symbolizes LOVE. The third candle (being the rose candle) represents JOY. The fourth candle represents PEACE. This explanation got me thinking of our relationship with God. We HOPE for certain things and many times this HOPE leads us to prayer. We know that God LOVES us and will give us what is best for us. Knowing that God LOVES us and has our best interests in mind we experience JOY. With JOY – trusting in the LORD – we then have PEACE. This PEACE then leads us to HOPE again and the cycle continues – symbolized by the circular nature of the wreath. The Church is steeped in symbolization. The key is in how to incorporate the symbolization into our daily lives. This Advent season, let us have continued HOPE in God’s plan for us, knowing that He LOVES US. Let this knowledge give us the JOY and PEACE that this Advent season brings so that we can HOPE again.

Preparing the Way of the Lord

By: Eileen Boudin, Christian Formation Director

Preparing the Way of the LordIf you have children in your lives, you know that they have already been telling you what they want for Christmas. But what are we telling them to do in preparation for the birth of Christ? Simple activities such as creating an Advent Wreath for the home, shopping for and giving gifts to the needy, reading the birth story of Christ from the Bible, are great ways to draw attention to the true spirit of the holiday. There is a saying that “Christ is the Reason for the Season”, but we need to teach our children that reason. The whole purpose of Christmas is to celebrate Christ’s birth – the gifting of his humanity to the world. The commercials will tell our children what they want, but our Christ-like preparations will give them what they need.

St. Peter Parish Library

Did you know that St. Peter Parish has a library that is available to our parishioners? Our parish library has material specifically related to spirituality, theology, catechesis, the lives of the saints, etc. Our library which located in the conference room of our parish offices is open to our parishioners Monday—Thursday from 1:00 pm—4:00 pm and Friday mornings from 8:00 am—11:00 am. Books may be taken home as they are signed out and returned in the same way in which a public library system operates.

St. Peter Parish Library

Formed.org

FORMED—Free Access for St. Peter’s Parishioners

Did you know that our parish subscribes to FORMED and that every parishioner has free access to it?

FORMED On Demand is a subscription service offering access to thousands of studies, films, audios and eBooks. Discover great digital media from over 40 of the best Catholic content producers including the Augustine Institute, Ignatius Press, the USCCB, Catholic Answers, EWTN, St. Paul Center Marian Press, Sophia Press, Knights of Columbus, FOCUS and many more.

Through its online platform and free mobile apps for iOS and Android, FORMED has helped individuals and communities know, love and share their Catholic faith.

Our parish has been using this subscription for our catechetical programs, but by utilizing the special code below, any parishioner can have access to all that FORMED offers in their own home. Consider learning more about our faith through reading, videos and even family Bible studies. Simply go to formed.org and utilize the specific code for St. Peter Parish (ZBR3Y7). You will need to create your own user ID and password. Please enjoy your parishioner access to this wealth of Catholic information.

Christian Formation Director
St. Peter's Church
337-465-2164

There are now items for children on FORMED!

Check it out.
Parish Code: ZBR3Y7