Well it’s good to be back with all of you.  I’ve just returned from a remarkable pilgrimage, where I was able to spend five days traveling and praying in the Holy Land.  We obviously saw the holiest places in Jerusalem, but we were also able to travel up the Sea of Galilee and Capernaum, which we hear about in today’s gospel.  Capernaum was a busy trading area, if I remember correctly from our guide, and the people that Jesus spoke to there were often resting on their way along the Sea Road.  They would carry what they learned from him much further than Jesus himself could go, and traveling as they were they were interested in new things.  I myself tried more new food than I ever thought I would while I was traveling over there (it was my first time trying shwarma.  I had no idea it was so good!)

In contrast to Capernaum, Nazareth is a bit of a backwater.  The people there have little need to travel.  They seem to have little interest in new ideas, or in seeing things differently.  So when Jesus returns, they are unwilling to see him as he is.  They are unwilling to be changed by his teaching.  Instead, they seem to think he belongs to them and that he has an obligation to do miracles for them.  Maybe you had a similar experience once coming home from school or the military or being away a long time.  Not only is this not how this works, it’s not likely Jesus even can, as he often states his miracles require some faith from the person receiving them.

Jesus points out that God has done many amazing things for people in strange and foreign places, and he does not limit himself to helping the people closest at home.  In fact, sometimes he seems to ignore them.  This is because God’s love takes risks to travel to strangers.  It doesn’t stay home all the time where things are safest.

Sometimes we too can become stuck in the routine and the familiar.  But we don’t have to travel to the Holy Land to be reminded of God’s love for us, and we don’t have to suffer a long plane ride to find people who need good news.  Even if those at home won’t listen, there are other places that God’s love can bear fruit.

Peace ~ Fr. Dan

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Do you shop Amazon? Did you know that if you simply go to Smile.Amazon.com instead of just Amazon.com you could donate .5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice? St. Max is now a registered charity. Simply follow this link: https://smile.amazon.com/ch/16-0784098 and you will automatically be giving .5% to our parish. To search for our parish by name enter: St. Maximilian Kolbe Roman Catholic Parish of Corfu NY.

Part of belonging to a faith community means more than attending church once a week! Building on our faith , we hope to share our lives and the spirit of Christ’s joy with each other, to help make us stronger in faith and always closer to what Jesus “calls us” to. For that reason, we have monthly fun functions that are geared to the whole family, or to single people! Come out, share in some fun, meet the rest of your fellow parishioners, or just come and check us out! You’ll be glad you did.

 UPCOMING PARISH EVENTS

Tues. after 8AM Mass, Legion of Mary, Spouse of Joseph & Monday, 3:30PM, Legion of Mary, Mystical Rose                                                                                                              Adoration, most Wednesdays, 7:40pm to 8:30pm, C                                                                       Thurs. after 8AM Mass, Litany to the Holy Face of Jesus                                                      Every Wed, 9:30-11:15AM, Women’s Bible Study, Cottage                                                      First Wed. Catholic Women’s Discussion Group, 9:30AM, EP Cottage

Sunday, February 3rd – Scout Sunday

Monday, February 4th – Building & Grounds, 7PM, C

Monday, February 4th – Social Club, 7:30PM, C

Sunday, February 10th – Donut Social, 8:30 & 11AM

Thursday, February 28th – WIGL Prayer Shawl Gathering, 7PM, EP Cottage

Monday, March 4th – Building & Grounds, 7PM, EP

Monday, March 4th – Social Club, 7:30PM, EP

Saturday, March 9th – First Penance, 9:30AM, EP

Sunday, March 10th – Donut Social, 8:30 & 11AM

Monday, March 11th – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Saturday, March 16th – St. Patrick’s Day Party, 6PM, EP

Monday, March 18th – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Saturday, March 23rd – Meat Raffle, 6PM, EP Hall

Monday, March 25th – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Friday, March 29th – Live Stations, 7PM, EP Hall

Monday, April 1st – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Friday, April 5th – WIGL Ladies Movie Night, EP Cottage

Monday, April 8th – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Monday, April 15th – Lent Book Discussion, 7PM, EP

Saturday, April 20th – Basket Blessing, 1PM, EP

Have a special anniversary or event coming up? Invite your friends and family to celebrate a special Mass with you ~ Fr. Dan will come to your neighborhood/backyard/home. Contact the Parish Office to schedule a date with Fr. Dan.

We have many events planned for the coming year, so plan on joining us in our faith community for fun and laughter. ANYONE and EVERYONE is welcome to attend our events. Check out news on our website closer to the date listed for more details, or call our office with any questions you may have.

Winter in Western New York is relatively unpredictable. Even the weatherman has a hard time predicting what we will get! Although many of our Christian brothers and sisters of other ecclesial communions often cancel their Sunday services, this almost never happens in the Catholic church, especially on the weekends. The Mass will go on, even if it’s just the Priest and the angels and saints. Yet, as our bishop said last week, we always urge our parishioners to use caution and not put themselves or anyone else in danger traveling to or from Mass. If you are unable to attend, Catholics are instructed to spiritually unite in prayer with those who are able to attend Mass. In these situations, let us be reminded of the opportunities to participate in Mass from home on television or the internet. We may get dispensed from the obligation to go to Mass at the Church, but we are not dispensed from the obligation to keep the Lord’s day holy.

Statement from the Diocese of Buffalo regarding the Reproductive Health Act

Earlier this week, Bishop Malone added this statement to the NYS Catholic Conference of Bishops, regarding the passage of the Reproductive Health Act:  “NYS is already the state with the highest rate of killing pre-born children through abortion.  This is a tragic day for NYS that makes a very bad situation even worse.  It is a barbaric action of our legislature, and clearly nothing to celebrate.”

The Catholic Conference represents the Bishops of New York State in public policy matters and their full statement from January 22nd follows:

“Today, New York State has added a sad chapter to this already solemn date of January 22, the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. With the legislature’s passage, and Governor Cuomo’s signing of the Reproductive Health Act, our beloved state has become a more dangerous one for women and their unborn babies.

“Many of the state Senators and Assembly Members who voted for this abortion expansion are mothers themselves, who felt their child toss, turn and kick in their womb, and delighted in the progress of their pregnancy. Many others, as well as our governor, are fathers, who held their partner’s hand as they viewed the ultrasound videos, watched their child squirm and rejoiced at the first sound of a heartbeat. Many of these same officials were themselves born into less-than-perfect conditions – poverty, health problems, disabilities, broken families. All overcame these issues to rise to leadership in our state, because their parents chose life for them.

“We thank all of our partners in the 12-year-long fight to stop this horrendous policy, and all pro-life New Yorkers who made their voices heard in an effort to stop it. Let us all pray for the conversion of heart for those who celebrate this tragic moment in the history of our state. And we pray in a special way for the lives that will be lost, and for the women of our state who are made less safe under this law.”

If you or a loved one are facing a serious physical illness, an emotional or spiritual relationship problem or other difficult situation, fellow members of our Parish are anxious to pray for you. In asking for prayer you may identify yourself or if the need is of a more personal nature you may choose to use a pseudo name for yourself or for the person for whom you are asking prayer. Be assured that all information will be kept strictly confidential. To request prayers, call Joyce Kohorst at 585-576-0741 (cell). She will immediately activate the prayer chain by notifying the first of 18 plus Prayer Warriors who will start “storming Heaven” ASAP with your need or concern. May God bless all of us as we pray for each other.

The Corfu United Presbyterian Church would like to thank you for your continued support of the Corfu Community Food Pantry located at their church. Your generous contributions make it possible for them to provide food and other essential goods to a monthly average of 20 adults, 6 seniors and 13 children.

The food pantry is currently in need of specific items.  Each week we will list a need and ask if you can help. Donations can be dropped off at the parish office or directly at the food pantry at Corfu United Presbyterian Church.

This week the Food Pantry is in need of:  Condiments

Thank you!