Dec 2020 - "Come, O Emmanuel!"
At Bethlehem over 2000 years ago, the world was in turmoil as Mary and Joseph silently prepared to receive their only son, Emmanuel. During Advent, the Church offers us the opportunity to contemplate the mysteries of the Holy Family in the silence of the cave at Bethlehem. Let it be a reminder for us to make time for silence during this season asking the Christ Child to take up his throne in the hearts of all men as we pray, “Come, O Radiant Dawn, Come O King of Nations, Come O Emmanuel.”
Dear Friends and Benefactors,
At Bethlehem over 2000 years ago, the world was in turmoil as Mary and Joseph silently prepared to receive their only son, Emmanuel. Today, while the world was caught up in the social, political, and medical crises of 2020, we, as members and friends, silently marked the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the Fraternal Society of St. Pius X by Archbishop Lefebvre! Sadly, many planned celebrations to remember this momentous day in the life of our Society were cancelled or tempered due to the global pandemic of Covid-19. Yet, the anniversary remained and was pondered quietly in our hearts amidst the chaos of these times.
While the Seminary had to cancel its participation in the Lourdes Pilgrimage, we were able to hold a pig roast luncheon with our local faithful in celebration of this anniversary. The brothers hand-picked one of our own pigs and took turns staying up all night smoking it! Decorated beautifully by the sisters, the parish hall was filled with the faithful who were happy to be joined by some of the priests and seminarians. It has been a blessing to watch this community grow alongside us. Presently, there are many registered families who not only attend the Sunday Mass, but often assist at weekday Masses and other liturgies. Most of these faithful also participate in the adult and children Catechism classes on Sunday mornings. The classes are taught by our seminarians and sisters, providing a rich opportunity on both sides!
As we grow, we are learning to use every inch of this beautiful seminary that your charity helped to build! This November we welcomed 32 young men to the seminary; men who are ready to offer their lives to God and Holy Mother Church. These 32 added to the 70 seminarians, 8 brothers, and 8 priests already in residence, we are a full house! The private Mass chapels have been turned back into bedrooms and we have had to search the nooks and crannies to set up altars for our priests. Soon, we will have the joy of receiving H.E. Msgr. Fellay, who will make the Seminary his home-base for the near future. We are grateful everyday for the many sacrifices you have made, such that we can call this new seminary our home: a home built to serve the needs that are integral to the formation of the men that come here. Certainly, the increase of holy priests working for the salvation of souls is very necessary in our time. Thus, your generous beneficence to St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary is also a necessity.
As we attempt some small measure of justice in repaying this debt to you, your intentions will be offered in the Novena of Masses for Christmas. In preparation for this celebration, Advent is now upon us. It is a time for us to change our focus once again towards Our Infant Lord and His Holy Parents who were received in the poorest of conditions...a stable meant for livestock. Though we may live in comfort, let us not waste the sufferings and tribulations of the past year as we unite them to Our Lord in reparation for the many sins which are so prevalent in our day. May the knowledge that dear Jesus brings us these sufferings to continue his life in us, bring you great joy this Advent. We know the Church offers us this yearly opportunity to contemplate the mysteries of the Holy Family in the silence of the cave at Bethlehem. Let it be a reminder for us to make time for silence during this season asking the Christ Child to take up his throne in the hearts of all men as we pray, “Come, O Radiant Dawn, Come O King of Nations, Come O Emmanuel.”
May your Christmas be radiant with the love of the Newborn King! Indeed, may the Divine Infant be glorified in you at Christmas and always and may He bring you every good gift in the New Year!
In Christo Sacerdote et Maria,
Rev. Fr. Yves le Roux
PS. I am very sorry to tell you that, for the time being, we are not able to accept Mass stipends at the Seminary. Please direct your Mass intentions to your local chapel.