St. Mary Star of the Sea Elementary and Middle School Enrollment

Come see how a Catholic education at St. Mary, Star of the Sea School can make a difference for your child and family!

St. Mary, Star of the Sea Elementary and Middle School is currently enrolling students in our Kindergarten through Eighth Grade for the 2017-18 school year.

St. Mary’s offers an affordable educational experience where we nurture the spiritual, physical, emotional, moral, and intellectual development necessary for your children to reach the fullness of their God-given potential. In addition to core subjects, we offer physical education, technology, music, art, and advanced mathematics—all taught in a fully Catholic environment.

Please call 760.722.7259 or email dshapiro@stmarystars.com to set up an appointment to visit our campus for a tour and meet our caring professional staff.

St. Mary Star of the Sea School

 

Treasures from our Tradition

The fact that many monastic churches do not have a prominent tabernacle shapes the patterns of liturgical prayer. Monastic communities often protect the ancient value of “receiving from the same sacrfice,” meaning that the communicants are assured that what they eat and drink in the Holy Mysteries actually comes from the same celebration. It surprises many to learn that the Church does not foresee, nor does it provide for, Communion of the faithful from the reserved Sacrament. Liturgical laws have long defended your right to receive from the same sacrifice, the same Mass, that you attend.

At one time, of course, the bread for the Eucharist was the ordinary bread of the day, except unleavened, probably pre- pared at home. It was broken and distributed to the faithful. Early on the loaf itself was referred to as the hostia in Latin, meaning the “sacrifice,” the same word for the sacrificial animal in Jewish worship, and for Jesus as the Lamb of God. By giving his life on the cross, Jesus became the hostia for us. To this day in the Greek Church, one of the tasks of the priest’s wife is to bake the bread for the Divine Liturgy, sometimes in a bakery oven dedicated to that purpose and called a “Bethlehem.”

Today’s familiar individual hosts first appeared in the eleventh century at about the time when tabernacles were coming into use. The turn away from “bready” bread allowed the hosts to be reserved since they did not spoil like regular bread, and made the annual “Easter duty” counts easier.

—Rev. James Field, Copyright © J. S. Paluch Co.

Treasures from Our Tradition

Some monks and nuns trace their community origins back a thousand years or so, before it became customary to reserve the Blessed Sacrament in tabernacles. In their rules of life, which evolved from the life- style and prayer of their predecessors, the core experience of Christ’s presence is at the altar itself, and in the symbol of assembly for prayer. To this day, when the monks or nuns file into their church in procession, they march two by two, and then bow profoundly to the altar before turning and bowing in reverence toward the brother or sister at their side. It is probably more difficult, in practice, to revere the presence of Christ in a person who irks you by taking the car keys, shirking a work duty, or burning the toast!

We can trace in these religious orders’ enduring customs the ancient appreciation for the altar as the center of the church building, and of the community of the faithful as the Body of Christ. Usually, a monastery today will reserve the Blessed Sacrament in some quiet corner of the monastic church, in a fairly small space, more suitable for private prayer than for the gathering of the whole community. In a cloister, the architecture may allow the public limited access to this space. Liturgical law tells us, in both monasteries and parish churches, that there is no need for more than a few hosts in the place of reservation, just enough for viaticum, the “food for the journey” that is the final sacramental celebration for a dying Christian.

—Rev. James Field, Copyright © J. S. Paluch Co.

Liturgy of the Word for children (Age 3-10)

The children of the parish are invited to join the Children’s Liturgy of the Word each Sunday at the 10:30 a.m. Mass. We sing, dance, listen and reflect on the readings at a level that children can appreciate. Come have fun and learn something that you can take home each week!

Detention Ministry

Detention Ministry

Volunteers are requested to help serve Catholic inmates in detention facilities. The greatest needs are in five detention facilities in Otay Mesa.

Can you find a couple of hours a week or even once a month to serve on a ministry team and pray, read scripture, and facilitate discussion with Catholic inmates?

Please explore this opportunity to help others and deepen your own relationship with God. There will be a diocesan Detention Ministry Information and Training Seminar on February 8 from 6-9 pm.

Visit San Diego Diocese Restorative Justice
or call the diocesan Restorative Justice office (858)490-8375.

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GOALS FOR THE NEW YEAR

Making resolutions for a new year is not, in itself, a bad thing.  What can be bad is not making meaningful resolutions.

Recently, my daughter-in-law (the wife of my sailor son, Jens)  and I co-hosted a Cookie Decorating Party and Brunch.

As we shared the meal, I was saying that I am trying to improve myself.  I am trying to learn that not everything must be done my way or even a specific way.  There are many people with great ideas and it really is okay if something is not exactly the same every year.  Trust me, this is a hard one for me but I know it will take a lot of stress out of my life if I learn to truly let go of things.

My brunch companion was surprised that I would talk about changing myself.  The way I see it, I am nowhere near perfect.   And it’s probably safe to say that you’re not either.  No disrespect intended.  I want to be as near perfect as I can be when God calls me home.  I at least want it known that I was making my best effort at it.  I have a long way to go, but as they say, every journey begins with a single step.

One of the things that I have always enjoyed is researching wise thoughts of those that have come before me.

The following thoughts were recorded by a Shawnee Native American named Techumseh (pronounced te-KUM-see), when he was near-death in 1813.  His native name means “Shooting Star” and by his words, I would say that he lived according to his name.

So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. 

Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours.

 Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life.

 Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people.

 When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way.

 Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.

 

Ralph Waldo Emerson lived during most of the 19th century (1803-82).   He wrote many great works of literature that have endured the test of time.  I just recently “ran across” this quote that I found to be quite profound:

The purpose of life is not to be happy.  It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well. 

I couldn’t agree with him more.  I take his words as a great inspiration to me.  I remember about thirty years ago, I had a revelation that I wanted my life to really count for something.  I had just started a family and wanted to put every bit of effort into raising good people who could contribute to society when they got older.  But I also set out to find one place I could make a difference.  Because I had that conscious goal in mind, I have managed to leave some good behind.  But the effort must never stop; it should intensify.  With each  accomplishment, you need to be further encouraged to continue and leave an even bigger footprint.  The same should be true of your faith life.  Try to deepen your faith  and come closer to perfection every day.

 

Thank God for the Power of Prayer

I want to share a personal story.  Maybe even a little more personal than I usually do.  It involves my son.

First, I want to say that I have conversations with so many people who say that their adult children no longer practice their Catholic Faith.  And what a heartache that can be to a parent who did everything in their power to instill the love of God and Church in their children.

So, to start this story I want to say that we all know that everything happens in GOD’S TIME.   He is not encumbered with clocks and calendars like we are.  It is all eternal time.  So it may seem like a long time to have a prayer answered, but to God the time is just right!

Two months ago, I sat with my son all day as he prepared (waited) to be shipped off to the Naval Training Center on Lake Michigan.   In conversation, I asked him if a sailor wears a dog tag.  (My only frame of reference is the Marine Corps in which my daddy served.)  He said yes, they do…funny you should ask.  They had just asked him about his religious preference and he told them NONE.  My heart sank.  He’s a cradle Catholic, attended Catholic school, and has always seen religion being practiced around him.

He has always continued to identify as a Catholic but, as an adult, has not practiced his faith regularly. He said he didn’t want to be a hypocrite and say that he was a Catholic when he wasn’t holding up his end of the bargain.

I reminded him of the story of the Prodigal Son and assured him that there would be much rejoining when he came back.

I gave him a Soldier’s rosary (woven thread with no metal) and he said he would carry it in his pocket.

I got my first letter from him after a few weeks and he said that he had attended Mass and that “it felt really good”.  He shared that the homily had really made him think about some things in his life and he was quite moved by it.

And then, the pièce de résistance, is that the chaplain handed out bibles as they left the chapel.  As a recruit, he’s not allowed any reading material other than religious.  So, he’s reading the bible now.

I shared my opinion that the bible can be rather daunting if you just start at the first page and try to plow through it.  I encouraged him to let the Spirit direct him and feel free to just open to a random page.

(Of course, the beauty of it is that it may seem random to us, but we are certainly being directed to a passage that will be very meaningful at that given moment.)

I haven’t received another letter from him.  He’s tried to call several times, but I was on vacation and out of cell phone range.  I believe in my heart that he is continuing this path.    And really, even if today isn’t the day, this experience has made a positive impact on his journey.  Tomorrow I’ll fly to Chicago to watch him graduate from Boot Camp!  I couldn’t be more proud of him!

As a side note, I have often talked about the little things that can make a big impact on someone.  While I was on vacation, I sent my son at least one, and sometime up to five postcards every day for 14 days.  I started each one with the day number (DAY 1…).  I knew he would want to put them in chronological order.  I just shared the usual postcard drivel, told him I loved him and was praying for him.  The cost the minimal.    I knew it would make him happy and that he would feel very loved and not forgotten.

It doesn’t take a lot of effort to do Random Acts of Kindness.  Try every day.  And thank God for answering your prayers.

 

Hospital Ministry

Join Hospital Ministry!

Hospital Ministry is a wonderful ministry here at St. Mary Star of the Sea Parish! We bring Holy Communion, prayer, and church bulletins to the Catholics in Tri-City Hospital. I hope that you can be a part of this God-filled ministry! We serve the poor, the sick, and the needy right in our own neighborhood. Is God calling you to this ministry?

If you are interested in being involved with this ministry please contact Racquel at 760-331-4892!

hospitalministry