Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Season at the Oratory

Click to see a larger version of the image.

Here is a letter from Father Karl Lenhardt, Rector of the Oratory:
2653 Ohio Avenue
Saint Louis, Missouri 63118

December 14, 2007

Email newsletter contains information about:
The Leaning steeple of St. Louis
Pastoral Statistics 2007
Christmas schedule
Crowning of the Infant

Dear faithful and friends of St. Francis de Sales Oratory-

Even if it is not so visible from the outside St. Francis de Sales Oratory is the location of the Leaning Steeple of St. Louis. The effect of the movement of our steeple is much more visible through its consequences, which we can easily see inside of our historic church building: extensive water damage, cracks in the walls and the ceilings, damage to adjacent parts of the building and to the windows in the back of the church. Since the foundation of St. Francis de Sales Oratory in July 2005 we have worked on preliminary studies to investigate the extension and origin of the movement, the geological reasons it and the possibilities to stabilize this structure. With your financial help and with the help and supervision of the archdiocesan Office of Building and Real Estate the administration of the oratory has spent almost $150,000 for the preliminary work of architects and engineers. During this month of December we received the results of their work. The good news is, our steeple will not collapse immediately, as mockers said, the bad news is it needs serious repair. The restoration of the steeple will cost $1.3 million. The sooner we begin the work the better it is and the more future damage we will be able to prevent. Therefore, we ask you for your help and your support. You can help us in many different ways, through your donations and through your prayers, but also by spreading the word about the needs of one of the most important and beautiful churches in St. Louis.
Please, contact our office for further information.

You can help our Oratory by supporting.
1. Escrip at your local Schnucks (ID: 164503069)
2. Escrip at Macy’s Department store (ID: 164503069)
3. Regular Envelopes-General Fund, ordinary operation of the Oratory.
4. Restoration Fund (not an endowment) all funds used exclusively for the immediate needs of the continued restoration of the Oratory.
5. Preservation Fund (endowment set up by the former parish for the preservation of the church. As it is an endowment only the interest can be used.)
6. Joining and praying with us at the Mother of Perpetual Help altar every Tuesday evening at 6:30pm.
All donations to the Oratory are Tax deductible!

140 years ago, on Christmas day 1867, the first Holy Mass was celebrated at the newly founded St. Francis de Sales parish and the first two baptisms took place. Fr. Lotz, the first pastor was so ill that day that he could only say one Mass.

This year 2007 St. Francis de Sales Oratory has seen:

19 Baptisms
11 Weddings
5 Funerals
34 Confirmations
2 Conversions to the Catholic Church
1 Adult Baptism
About 700 hours of confessions were heard by the clergy of the oratory.

We invite you to celebrate with us the 140th Christmas at St. Francis de Sales.

Christmas Schedule
Monday, December 24, Christmas Eve
11pm: Confessions
11:30pm: Christmas carols
12:am: Midnight Mass

Tuesday, December 25, Nativity of the Lord, Christmas
(Dec. 24) 12am-Midnight Mass
8am, Low Mass with organ: Missa in aurora
10am, Solemn High Mass: Missa in die

Saturday, December 29, Crowning of the Infant
His Eminence, Francis Cardinal George will come to the Shrine of Christ the King, Chicago to crown the statue of the Divine Infant King. This will occur during a Solemn High Mass at 1:30pm, at which His Eminence will assist. All are welcome to join in this most solemn occasion.

Monday, December 31, Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament
5pm, Te Deum in Thanksgiving for the last year, Benediction.
The faithful attending this devotion may receive a plenary indulgence under the ordinary conditions.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008, Holy Day of Obligation
8am, Low Mass w/organ; 10am, Solemn High Mass; 5pm Low Mass w/organ
At the beginning of all Masses today the hymn Veni Creator Spiritus is sung to invoke the guidance of the Holy Ghost for the New Year. The faithful attending this devotion may receive a plenary indulgence under the ordinary conditions.

Saturday, January 5, Vigil of the Epiphany
5pm Blessing of Epiphany Water

Sunday, January 6, Feast of the Epiphany
10am Solemn High Mass
2pm St. Cecilia choir, recital, FREE admission

Sunday, January 27, External Solemnity of the Feast of St. Francis de Sales
Patron of the Oratory and of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest
8am, Low Mass; 10am Solemn High Mass
The faithful attending the Masses and devotions to St. Francis de Sales may receive a plenary indulgence under the ordinary conditions.

Ordinary schedule of Masses at the Oratory:
Daily: 8:00am Low Mass
Sunday: 8:00am Low Mass, 10:00 Solemn High Mass
Tuesday: 6:30pm Low Mass, followed by Perpetual Help devotions
Wednesday: 8am; 12:00 NOON, Low Mass
Thursday: 7:00pm Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament with Benediction
First Friday: 7:00pm Solemn High Mass
Holy Days: 8:00am, and 12:10pm, 7:00pm Solemn High Mass
Confessions/ Holy Rosary 30mins before all Masses

Thanking you for all of your help and your commitment, I wish you and your beloved ones all the heavenly blessings of the advent and birth of our Divine Redeemer.

Yours devotedly in Christ the King
Fr. Karl W. Lenhardt
Episcopal Delegate/Rector/Vice Provincial

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