St Joseph and St Mary Parishes in Freeport, IL

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Symbolism in the Church #18

Another image we have of Jesus in the foyer area is the Infant of Prague. I do not know when this image was brought here to St Joseph Church, but it has been here for quite a while. There is no specific information as to when the original statue of the Infant of Prague was made. In Spain, around the 1300s, there were similar images made with a wood base carved, covered in wax. It came on the radar for devotion, as it was said St Theresa of Avila had it for a while. There were political connections between Spain and Germany that were fostered, and along with it, devotion to the child Jesus. That would explain the devotion in the German Tradition. It went through wars and mishandling in the 1600s and ended up in Prague. Many miracles have been attributed to the original image in Prague. The original looks more like a doll than a statue because of the wax, but is not something to play with as it is very fragile. Continue reading

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Symbolism in the Church #17

As soon as you come in the door of the foyer area, there is a painting above the glass doors as you are facing into the church. It is a picture of Jesus with His hands down towards those who are sick and poor. It reminds us of how Jesus has compassion for the sick and poor. This is a place where they can come and receive consolation from our merciful Lord. So often we think of those who do not suffer as blessed. However, when we read Matthew, Chapter Five, verses three through twelve, we start to understand that it is specifically people who suffer who have God’s support. Continue reading

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Corpus Christi Novena Explanation

June 23 is the Feast Day of Corpus Christi, where we as Catholics honor Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament. All are invited to pray the novena prayer below. You can cut it out and pray it for the nine days of the novena. The Novena starts Friday, June 14.
Novena prayers are great for opening us up for the graces of special feast days like this. We look forward to honoring our savior Jesus and the graces He wants to give us.

~ Daily Novena Prayers ~

O Lord, You have given us this Sacred Banquet, in which Christ is received, the memory of His Passion is renewed, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us.
V: You have given them bread from Heaven. 
R: Having all sweetness within it.
Let us pray. God our Father, for Your glory and our salvation You appointed Jesus Christ eternal High Priest. May the people He gained for You by His Blood come to share in the power of His Cross and Resurrection by celebrating His Memorial in this Eucharist, for He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever. Amen. 
O Jesus, since You have left us a remembrance of Your Passion beneath the veils of this Sacrament, grant us, we pray, so to venerate the sacred mysteries of Your Body and Blood that we may always enjoy the fruits of Your Redemption, for You live and reign forever. Amen.

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Faith in Him

Just keep an open heart to Jesus. He is the way, te tuth and the life. His very being is associated with the “way”, how we are to live our life. Sometimes we don’t like His way. Just be open to Him and trust in Him. 

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Symbolism in the Church #12

The Patron of this parish is rightfully a figure of prominence in this church. This parish was named after St Joseph, the foster father of Jesus. Our heavenly Father, to whom we address the prayer that Jesus taught us, chose St Joseph to be the father here on earth for His only begotten Son. St Joseph was hand picked by God, of all men throughout all of time, to be the earthly father of Jesus. This alone should make us pause and ponder his importance in the life of Jesus and, therefore, our lives.
Since St Joseph is the namesake of our parish community, it should make us pause all the more and put ourselves individually and as a community under his care to lead us ever closer to Jesus. We are not a community of just Jesus and me; that is not why Jesus founded a church. We need help from each other here below and help from above. If we did not need help from above, why would God make angels and have them serve us, as is well attested in the bible. Continue reading