St. Denis ~ A Community of Faith
    • Pastor's Note
      Dear Fellow Parishioners,
                    Today marks the beginning of the most sacred of times in the Christian Catholic Community.  This week that we call Holy Week, is when we encounter Liturgically and Sacramentally, the whole of the Paschal Mystery - namely, the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ the Son of God.  I strongly encourage you to take time this week to participate in the sacred liturgical events that make up this week.  This week should be different in your homes.  I would hope that a spirit of reverence is kept in some fashion, amid the “stuff” of life, in your family homes...the domestic church.  Allow me to give a brief overview of the Triduum.  First, what does Triduum mean?  It means three days, and it refers to Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter, days that form the cornerstone of our faith.  The Triduum is one continual Liturgy that begins with the Sign of the Cross at the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday and concludes with the blessing given at the conclusion of the Easter Vigil.  Hence, it is one not three separate days or events.  They are so interconnected that it must be celebrated as One Mystical Event.
             Holy Thursday...On this day the Church celebrates the institution by Christ of two sacraments, Holy Eucharist and Holy Orders.  On this day all of the priests and deacons of the Archdiocese, along with the faithful (who are invited and strongly encouraged to attend), gather with our Shepherd, Archbishop Chaput for the Chrism Mass.  It is in this Mass that the Archbishop blesses the Oils that are used in our Parish throughout the year.  Also, at this Mass the priests stand before the people and renew their promises made at their Ordination to the Priesthood, for this is the day in which Christ instituted the priesthood (“Holy Orders”).   Later, in the evening we will celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper.  This is the memorial of the Last Supper and Christ’s giving us the Eucharist.  It is in this Liturgy that the Gloria, which has not been sung since the beginning of Lent, will be sung with great joy.  After the Gospel, which speaks of how Jesus washed the feet of his disciples, this action is recalled. (In Latin, the washing of the feet is called Mandatum).   This action is a symbolic explanation of what Jesus has done and is doing for us -  He serves us most humbly and He calls us to serve others with equal humility.

              Good Friday…  This is not a Mass.   The somber tone of this commemoration of the Lord’s Passion is evident from the very start.  The celebrant enters in silence and prostrates before the altar.  This Liturgy is the combination of three powerful elements that leave us at the very least reflective, but for most stunned.  The Liturgy of the Word includes John’s account of the Passion of the Christ.   John’s rendering of the Passion speaks of the dignity of Jesus, who even though He is being crucified, nevertheless remained in control of what was happening for He is “king of kings and lord of lords.”  The second part of the Liturgy is the veneration of the Cross so as to respect the weight that Jesus bore for our sins.  Finally, there is reception of Holy Communion.  Following the Our Father, the Eucharist which had been previously consecrated, is distributed to the faithful and then the congregation once again departs in the silence.
            Holy Saturday...The Easter Vigil.  This is the climax of the Triduum.  It is a Liturgy packed with symbolism of the triumph of life over death, light over darkness, and love over hate.  The Liturgy begins with the lighting of the Paschal fire.  The fire and the candles lit represent Christ as the light of the world.  The great Easter Proclamation, the Exultet, is proclaimed in praise and thanksgiving.  The Exultet is actually a short theology of the meaning of the Paschal Mystery, which we celebrate.  The readings of the Liturgy are enhanced and more are added so as to show through the course of history how God, from creation onward, has always come to the aide of His people.   It is in the Easter Vigil that those who have made the journey through the Rite of Christian Initiation are now welcomed by the refreshing waters of Baptism.   The Liturgy continues as a normal Sunday liturgy and the blessing at the end is the conclusion of the Sacred Triduum.  This is only an overview!  This celebration of the Triduum is something that must be experienced and thus lived.  Please make it a priority in your lives to join us as we recall all that Christ has endured so that we may have salvation and newness of life.  All are welcome!  

       Holy Thursday—April 17, 2014
      8:30am             Morning Prayer
      7:30pm   Mass of the Lord’s Supper
      Most Reverend Robert. P. Maginnis, Celebrant
      Homilist:  Reverend Kevin J. Gallagher
      Good Friday—April 18, 2014
      8:30am             Morning Prayer
      3:00pm Passion of the Lord
      Reverend Robert F. Lucas, Celebrant
      Holy Saturday—April 19, 2014
      8:30am Morning Prayer
      7:30pm Easter Vigil
      Reverend Kevin J. Gallagher, Celebrant
      Easter Sunday—April 20, 2014
      Reverend Kevin J. Gallagher, Celebrant
      Reverend Monsignor Bernard J. Trinity, Celebrant
      Reverend Kevin J. Gallagher, Celebrant
      Reverend Bruce Bidinger, SJ, Celebrant
      Reverend Robert F. Lucas, Celebrant
      *Celebrants subject to change

    • Parish Mission Statement

      “We, the faith community of St. Denis believe that our Baptism calls us to life in community with God’s people and to growth in holiness by becoming more like Jesus.  We welcome and invite all people to build and experience this community, which mirrors God’s love for us.”

    • St. Denis Family Fun Fair
      The Saint Denis Family Fun Fair will be held on May 7 - May 10 & May 14 - May 17. Please look for our tab under "News & Events" for more information.