Monday, March 27, 2023

March Mini Retreat

 Our March Mini-Retreat was later in the month than we typically plan for because of Spring Break.  March 18th, we were finally able to gather together.  

Like February, we began with Mass at Holy Redeemer Church.  After Mass, was breakfast at the CRC (French toast, sausage and yogurt parfaits!). We prayed a rosary for our intentions in the Chapel before moving to the Fireside Room for videos, conversations about speakers, and fellowship.

This time, we heard the keynote talks from Sr. Bethany Madonna, S.V., and Father Mike Schmitz.  It was a good opportunity to pause in the busyness that is usually our schedule.  We were able to reflect on the powerful understanding that faith is not a feeling.  We were also able to come to a better understanding of what the Truth is, and how we need to respond when we are presented with it.  We are grateful Abbey, Celia and Olivia were able to take the time together.

Join us on Saturday, April 1, at 8am at Holy Redeemer Church.  Not only will we be able to celebrate the Mass with our parish community, but we will also be able to fully participate in all aspects of the First Saturday devotion before returning to the Campus Religious Center for breakfast, videos and more.  Send a message to Becki with your breakfast suggestions.  You never know, yours might be chosen!

See you soon!

Sunday, March 26, 2023

Catholicism 101: What Is It All About? God's Love, God's Will, and Free Will

God's will is our creation, salvation and eternal life.  God's will is love.  We, as Catholics, believe God predestined all of us to be saved.  However, God does not force His will on us.  We have the freedom to choose to follow God's will.

Before we can understand this, though, we must first understand what "will" is.  Will is the faculty or capacity to choose what we do.  Will is what moves us to action.  Will is the choosing to do.

God's existence does not depend on our belief or unbelief.  God is all good and does not will evil.  We hear this in the book of Jeremiah 29:11:  For I know the plans I have in mind for you, oracle of the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope.

One thing we must keep in mind is that just because it is God's will for us to have eternal salvation, he will not demand we choose that for ourselves.  He will respect the choices we make, whether to draw us closer, or to move away from the Lord.  If we choose God's will for our lives, it is more than just saying we are choosing it. It is a process of conforming our wills so they reflect God's will.  When our will and God's will is in tandem, we will be leading a happier existence, even if we are facing obstacles or struggles because we are so grounded in Jesus we desire the good He desires for us.

Join us next Sunday night for our final Catholicism 101 for the year:  The Rest of Eternity:  What Happens After?  This will be our discussion about Heaven and Hell, choosing the presence of God, versus choosing the absence of God.  Supper will be provided!

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Lenten Fish Fry Fundraising

 The Knights of Columbus have graciously invited the Catholic Stangs to sell desserts at each fish fry they have held this year.  Our college students are working on fundraising their way to SEEK24 and the van rental and gas is estimated to cost $1500.00.  So far, they have raised over $700.00 of the $1500.00 they need.  Please join us this Friday, March 24th, for the last Fish Fry of the year.  We will be accepting free will donations for cupcakes, banana cheesecake bars and scotcheroos!   (as a side note, the Knights are fundraising a new freezer for the Holy Redeemer School.  They need your support as well!)  See you on Friday! 

Saturday Night Diamond Art

 Saturday night, March 18, the Catholic Stangs hosted a Diamond Art night at the Campus Religious Center.  Diamond Art is a time-consuming process, so we are expecting lots of repeat visitors to the CRC as they continue to work on their projects.  It was an enjoyable evening filled with laughter, snacks, movies and art!  Join us the next time we work on our art, there are still plenty of kits available for you to choose one of your own!

Tie Blankets for Birthright

 The Catholic Stangs have set a goal of 40 tie blankets in 40 days for Birthright during the season of Lent.  They have been working diligently on their project.  They are currently at 31 blankets complete.  We greatly appreciate all of the people who have generously donated material or funds to purchase materials.  This wouldn't be possible without all of you!

If anyone has any fleece that needs a home (or a Hobby Lobby gift card you don't know what to do with!), please contact Becki at the Parish Office.  The students would love to help you find a home for those items!

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Newman Club Elections (and pizza night!)

 Tonight was Election Night for the Newman Club officer team for the 2023-2024 school year.  We started with homemade pizza (Thanks, Dave J.!) before the elections.  It was an evening filled with laughter, sharing, and planning for the future.  We are grateful to the six people who said YES to leadership for the next year.  Please join us in congratulating Abbey (President), Olivia (VP of Finance), Emma (VP of Communications), Luci (VP of Social Media), Levi (Officer-At-Large) and Stephen (Officer-At-Large).  We look forward to all the Lord will accomplish for the next year through your hands and feet!