• Cassie Herrington

News 05.08.20

From the Pastor:

Patricia Kay Challender was born December 1 1939.  She is the oldest of three girls.  Her father, Clyde, was an avid hunter, fisher, and overall outdoors man.  Patricia married her high school sweetheart when she was only 19 years old.  In the next six years, Patricia gave birth to 5 children – 4 boys and one girl.  Her husband was often away on business which left Patricia to manage the 5 kids while keeping the home functioning.  Patricia learned from her dad a certain toughness which came in handy as she kept order in a house filled with so many young kids.   Patricia was also a very loving, and caring mother to her 5 kids.  She cooked marvelous meals, packed great lunches for school (using amazing homemade grape and strawberry jam), and always ended the day with a hug and kiss goodnight.  Patricia is better known these days as Pat Knowles.  A frequent follower of mine on Facebook.  She continues to express deep love for her children, grandchildren, and great grandson.  Patricia is my mom.  Mom, thank you for being there for me, thank you for loving me, and thank you for helping me to know Jesus Christ. 

I want to wish all mothers, stepmothers, and grandmothers a blessed Mother’s Day.  I will remember you all in prayer this weekend during my Mass and will ask God to bless you in a very special way as we celebrate your great devotion and love for your families.  

I think we are getting closer to the time when Masses will once again be open to the public.  The Bishop is working on some guidelines to be observed for when Masses are resumed.  I do know that we will have to follow some social distancing rules.  These will all be explained once the documents are finalized and the Bishop announces the end to our current ban on the public Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.  

I want to express heartfelt gratitude for the way our St. Patrick Parnell community has rallied to protect the future of this parish.  Your financial support has been truly amazing.  With your continued support, we will be able to protect and make improvements to our facility ensuring that future generations of parishioners will be able to worship here and have their children educated in our school.

I do regret to inform you all that we will not be able to offer our parish festival this summer.  There is too much uncertainty regarding the required social distancing regulations.  This is unfortunate, but we will come back strong in the years to come.  We will provide more information about our auction in the weeks to come as we will still plan to offer this fundraising opportunity.  

Keep the prayers coming.  I am strengthened by all of your support.

Oremus pro invicem.

In Mary, Fr. Tom

Festival 2020- Cancelled

With precautions for COVID-19 and the uncertainty regarding when large events will be permitted to resume in Michigan, St. Patrick Parnell has made the difficult decision to cancel our annual festival. We are working with our festival chairpersons to come up with a way to still offer an opportunity for the community to support our parish mission and participate in an online auction. While we are disappointed that the festival will not be structured as it has in the past, we aim to offer the community a fun way to celebrate the history and tradition that St. Patrick has come to represent here in Parnell. As more details are confirmed, we will post updates in the bulletin, newsletter, and Facebook page.

VBS 2020- Cancelled

Unfortunately due to COVID restrictions Vacation Bible School will not take place this year.  

For audiobooks and films to watch with your kids we encourage you to utilize the parish subscription to FORMED at

SCAM Alert

Scammers are impersonating priests in the Diocese of Grand Rapids, asking parishioners to respond to an urgent request via email or text to buy gift cards or send money.  Please do not respond to these requests!  When requests from Father Tom are urgent, the parish office will call you.

Prayer to the Virgin Mary for the Protection from the Coronavirus

O Mary, you shine continuously on our journey as a sign of salvation and hope.  We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick.  At the foot of the Cross you participated in Jesus’ pain, with steadfast faith.  You, Salvation of the Roman People, know what we need.  We are certain that you will provide, so that, as you did at Cana of Galilee, joy and feasting might return after this moment of trial.

Help us, Mother of Divine Love, to conform ourselves to the Father’s will and to do what Jesus tells us: He who took our sufferings upon Himself, and bore our sorrows to bring us, through the Cross, to the joy of the Resurrection.  Amen.

We seek refuge under your protection, O Holy Mother of God.  Do not despise our pleas – we who are put to the test – and deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin.

- Prayer by Pope Francis

Youth Ministry

High school students are encouraged to join our weekly youth group virtual Zoom meetings! Sundays @ 6pm Meeting ID: 298-477-9339

Youth Bible Studies: Tuesday at 7PM – Middle School Bible Study Thursday at 8PM – High School Bible Study.

All of them are on Zoom with the Meeting ID 298-477-9339

If you would like weekly emails with updates regarding either youth group, please let Cassie know at Some ideas for virtual gatherings are in process. Let Cassie know and she will add you to the email list to keep your child active in his or her faith.

Men’s Retreat

Are you looking for a spiritual reboot? Join other Catholic men and Monsignor Gus Ancona for the annual men’s retreat on Wednesday, July 22 at the Franciscan Life Process Center in Lowell. It is a day of prayer, reflection, conferences, the celebration of Mass and the sacrament of Reconciliation all led by Msgr. Ancona.  Flyer can be found here.

Date: Wednesday, July 22 Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Cost: $70, includes lunch. Financial assistance is available.

Carpooling available from Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Grand Rapids (leaving at 8 a.m.) Registration and information: 616-897-7842 or, click events, July 22 and Men’s Summer Retreat.

Thank You!

Thank you to all who continue to mail in their weekly offertory or give online. We are truly blessed to have a generous parish family. We are praying for each of you and want you to know that we are here for you.

Rice Bowls

We prayed, fasted and gave alms—and now we celebrate the Risen Lord! Our Lenten journey with CRS Rice Bowl challenges us as we begin the Easter season to share what we have with our global family.

Since we are unable to return our Rice Bowls to Mass at this time, you can count the money and mail a check to the parish office (mark it for Rice Bowl), or you can also hold on to it and bring it in when Masses resume.

Directives Extended through May 28th

The Diocese of Grand Rapids has extended its cancellation of ALL public Masses and all other liturgical and devotional services, effective immediately, through May 28th, 2020. Please read the letter from Bishop Walkowiak here

Spiritual Communion My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

As people of faith, let us pray for all affected by this virus, especially those who have died and for all health care workers who are working diligently to protect us in this time.  Let us entrust our prayers to Mary, Mother of the Church and Health of the Sick.

Need Assistance?

If you find yourself unable to go in public for groceries, please contact the office.  We have several people able to run errands for you. Please call the parish office.

If you need financial assistance, please call the parish office and we will direct you to programs that can help.

Sacrament of Reconciliation Wednesday’s from 6:30-7:30pm Saturday’s from 3-4:40pm

Daily Mass Options Here are a couple options to view daily Mass as shared by one of our parishioners. With Comcast Cable, channel 393 has the EWTN Catholic channel with daily Mass at 8am, 12pm and 7pm.  Also, Bishop Robert Barron has a website that he is posting daily at 8:15 am everyday now. Here is the website


What is Formed? It is an online platform that our parish has a     subscription to. You can discover thousands of books, audio talks, movies, documentaries, and studies… there is something for every member of the family to help them grow closer to Christ and His Church.  Here is a great resource on FORMED as well.

During this time when we can’t gather in our church, take the opportunity to grow in faith! Click here St Patrick on Formed and it will take you to our parish’s subscription. Create an account and you will have access to all of the content on their platform. You can also download the FORMED app and enter and register.  Have questions, contact Cheryl Emmette in the parish office.

Parish App

Are you missing the bulletin?  Download our new app today and see what you’ve missed!  There are many new options on the new app and you can continue to get the bulletin, newsletter and stay connected. Questions or need help,  contact Cheryl Emmette in the parish office. 

We hope for our new app to be a tool for fostering stronger parish life at St. Patrick and better engaging the New Evangelization.

Text APP to 88202 to download our parish app.  Download myParish App and select our Parish after opening.  You must setup an account to receive our notifications.

Another online source for the bulletin is at  You can register here to receive the bulletin every week right to your email and it’s free!  Click here and sign up today.

Online Giving

Watch your giving grow as you help us grow our ministry!  If you give through ParishSoft Giving, our secure giving program, accessible from the church website, you can watch your giving grow this season…and throughout the year!  When you create a login, your gift and pledge history will be stored so that you can access it at anytime.  This will allow you to accurately assess how much you’re giving to what so that you can make informed decisions and plan your future gifts.  It also helps us in the church office; there’s much less processing for online gifts than for envelope gifts!

North Kent Connect

As we limit personal contact by closing our donation area and distributing pre-packaged boxes of food to our clients, we are asking our community to purchase a food box for $13.75 through our website, Each box will provide a family of four with five meals, and includes items such as canned and boxed foods, fresh fruits and vegetables, and dairy items.  Or, you can make a one-time donation in any amount to fund our need as we help families especially hit hard during the pandemic.  (PLEASE BE SURE TO ADD “BOXED FOOD” OR “AS NEEDED” IN THE DESCRIPTION FIELD).


Make a Monetary Donation:  We will use financial donations to purchase perishable food items (as needed) and provide crisis funding for families affected by business closures and reduced income. Donations can be made in person or online at Volunteer:  We need healthy volunteers (must be 15 yrs old). Must complete a Volunteer Orientation. 

Donate Food:  We need food items that are healthy, non-perishable, and easily prepared by children.  For a flyer with more detail, click here.

God’s Mercy for the World

This Sunday, Jesus tells his apostles that he is going to prepare a place for them so that, “where I am you also may be.”  Our Divine Redeemer welcomes home all of his children and to help them with their passing he told St. Faustina to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy.  “When this Chaplet is said by the bedside of a dying person, God’s anger is placated, unfathomable mercy envelopes the soul, and the very depths of My tender Mercy are moved for the sake of the sorrowful passion of My Son.”  Diary #811

Since God is outside of time, the Chaplet is efficacious for all dying souls, past, present and future.  Copies of the Chaplet of Divine Mercy are found in the narthex of the Church.

Lord Jesus, may we all learn to trust in your Mercy and pray for our deceased brothers and sisters who depend on this Corporal Work of Mercy for their entrance into eternal life.

Canceled until Further Notice

Adoration (daily and 1st Friday) Senior Luncheons Thursday Rosary Bringing the Eucharist to the Homebound Men’s Faith Sharing Euchre Bunco Indoor Volleyball Men’s Basketball Parish Festival Meetings Catholicism Series Faith Study Men’s Faith Study Women’s Faith Sharing Knight’s Breakfasts Youth Groups and Game Nights

2020 Census: It’s Critical, Convenient, and Confidential

The 2020 Census is currently underway. Did you know that by completing nine simple questions, you can help deliver ten years of benefits to your community? These benefits include funding for disease prevention, roads, education, and emergency services. With an online option for the first time, as well as mail and phone options, the survey has never been easier to fill out from home, and it only takes ten minutes to complete. Respond to the 2020 Census today. Your prompt response will not only provide vital support to services across Michigan, but it will also protect public health and safety by minimizing the need for census takers to follow up in-person during this Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Are you discerning the priesthood?

Gifted and Called is a discernment opportunity sponsored by the diocesan Office of Priestly Vocations. Each month, young men (ages 16 – 35) are invited to gather and discern God’s will for their lives.  Time for prayer and reflection will be held monthly at St. Robert Catholic Church in Ada from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Men are also personally invited to attend the 6 p.m. Sunday Mass.  This year’s Gifted and Called discernment opportunities are offered on May 17.  Feel free to show up or call to let us know you are coming at 616-288-0910.  Questions, email Fr. Stephen Durkee (

Attention Catholic Central Class of 1970

The 50th class reunion will be Saturday August 22, 2020 at 5PM. It will be held at English Hills Event Center 1200 4 Mile Rd NW, Grand Rapids MI 49544.  Please contact Sue (Ulanch) Underhill for tickets. E-mail: Phone: 616-450-5855

Camp Sancta Maria

Covid-19 Update:  Looking for a fun and faith-filled place for your children or grandchildren to spend a week or two this summer?  Want to help them unplug from technology and not even miss it?  Look no further! Camp Sancta Maria (CSM), located in Gaylord, Michigan, provides wholesome recreation and adventure in an atmosphere of Christian faith.  CSM is a Catholic camp offering one- and two-week sessions for boys and one-week sessions for girls.  Since 1933, CSM has provided countless youth with lasting memories.  Activities include daily Mass and evening prayer, horseback riding, swimming, a high- and low- challenge ropes course, a fifty-foot climbing wall, crafts, archery, various sports, a trip to Mackinac Island, campfires (and s’mores!) and so much more!!!  Fun, faith, and friendships included at no extra cost!  Check out our website to learn more at  or call (248) 822-8199.

Open Jobs at the Diocese

The Diocese of Grand Rapids is seeking an Administrative Assistant (part-time, 30 hours maximum) to provide a variety of specialized administrative support services to the Office of Faith Formation including Catechesis, Family, Youth, and Young Adult ministries.  The successful candidate will provide administrative support, event coordination, and database management while creating a welcoming environment for visitors and callers. More information can be found on our website at

Other Diocesan openings:  Parish Auditor (part-time up to 30 hrs), Administrative Assistant Faith Formation (19hrs), Administrative Assistant Prison & Jail Ministry (variable part-time from 12-19 hrs) and Assistant Director Hispanic Ministry (two full-time positions).

Administrative Assistant Needed at the Catholic Information Center – Full Time, (30) hours per week, Mon-Thu 9-4:30pm.  More information can be found on the diocesan website.  Interested applicants should e-mail a cover letter and resume by Friday, January 31st to  No phone calls please.

SS. Peter and Paul Parish has an opening for a 30 hour per week Maintenance Manager.  Duties pertain to the care and maintenance of the parish buildings and grounds, including regular maintenance of lawn equipment, boilers, and buildings, as well as mowing grass, and snow and ice removal.  Hours are ordinarily 6:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. daily, with some flexibility allowed.  Applications and a full job description are available at the parish office, 434 High Street, Ionia, MI 48846, or call 616-527-3610.

The Catholic Foundation of West Michigan is seeking to hire its first permanent full-time executive director and stewardship officer. The new director will be responsible for leading the $66M independent foundation and implementing its recently approved strategic plan for the years 2020-2022. The stewardship officer will be responsible for engaging donors to ensure fulfillment of their gift intentions and to convey the impact of their generosity.  Job descriptions can be found here:  Exec. Director Catholic Foundation Stewardship Officer Catholic Foundation

Reading Reflections

5th Sunday of Easter:  Jesus the Way Reading I:  Acts 6:1-7 – The need of assistants Reading II:  1 Peter 2:4-9 – Living stones Gospel:  John 14:1-12 – Last discourse: the way,  the truth, and the life

Key Passage:  I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)

Adult:  In a challenge you face right now, what will it mean to live the way of Jesus Christ? Youth:  Name some ways you can be more like Jesus when you are playing with your friends or family.

A Family Perspective

by Bud Ozar In today’s gospel Jesus tells us, HE IS THE WAY and warns anyone who offers “another way” to happiness is “a thief and a bandit.” Strong words! Don’t listen to the sales pitch of society for happiness. Look to yourself where God is present and “calls you by name and leads you to abundant life.”

Word of Life

“Even the weakest and most vulnerable, the sick, the old, the unborn and the poor, are masterpieces of God’s creation, made in his own image, destined to live forever, and deserving of the utmost reverence and respect.”

USCCB Respect Life flyer quoting Pope Francis’ “Day for Life Greeting” © 2013 Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

Respect Life

“The most important person on earth is a mother.  She cannot claim the honor of having built Notre Dame Cathedral.  She need not.  She has built something more magnificent than any cathedral – a dwelling for an immortal soul, the tiny perfection of her baby’s body…the angels have not been blessed with such a grace.  They cannot share in God’s creative miracle to bring new saints to Heaven.  Only a human mother can.  Mothers are closer to God the creator than any other human creature.  God joins forces with mothers in performing this act of creation… What on God’s earth is more glorious than this: to be a mother.” –Cardinal Joseph Mindszenty

Encourage Group

For parents of sons and daughters who experience same-sex attraction, “speaking the truth in love” to their children can often present a challenge.  The EnCourage apostolate is the Catholich Church’s outreach to parents and loved ones in this situation and offers support and direction as they strive to love their children without the boundless love of Christ.  A priest leads regular meeting of EnCourage and offers insights into how to keep the faith while keeping family relationships strong.  For more information, please call 616-288-0918 or email

Courage Group

Before all else comes the individual person, “Pope Francis wrote, “and people should not be defined only by their sexual tendencies.  We are all destined to receive his infinite love.” The Courage apostolate welcomes men and women who experience same-sex attraction as brothers and sisters in Christ and helps them to respond to their vocation as sons and daughters of God, created in his image and likeness.   Together with a priest, Courage members strive for chastity, build authentic friendships, and grow in holiness.  For more information,  call 616-288-0914 or email

AA Meetings

Meetings have been put on hiatus until after Memorial Day 2020.

Lo-Gluten Host

We provide lo-gluten hosts for those needing them. Please contact Emma Darling at for more information.

Sacrament of Reconciliation

Every Saturday, 3PM, in the church.

Adult Christian Initiation

To become Catholic, complete your adult initiation into the Catholic Church, or if you know someone whom might be interested, St. Patrick Parish has a process of inquiry into the Catholic faith that meets throughout the year.  Contact Lindsey Wilbur, 691-8541, x12. 

Franciscan Life Process Center Events

FLPC| 11650 Downes St NE | Lowell |616-897-7842  | To register, please go to to find the link in events or call 616-897-7842.

Benefit: Free & Easy Fundraising (or Apply to Tuition) Benefit is a free iPhone and Android app that allows you to shop at places like Target, Starbucks, Amazon, Walmart and many more, while giving up to 20% of every transaction back to your own tuition account or to the general tuition assistance program. Just shop as normal, and at checkout, use the Benefit app and purchase a digital gift card to redeem instantly.  For instance, spend $100 at Gap, and $8 (8%) goes to your tuition account, your designee or to general tuition assistance.  It doesn’t cost you a dime beyond what you were already going to spend.  It’s raising funds without fundraising!  Download the app and select St. Pat’s as your beneficiary to start giving today. For more info, Involve family and friends – the more people who participate, the more funds raised!

Offered by Catholic Charities

• Catholic Charities West Michigan’s Pregnancy Counseling and Support Program is designed to assist individuals, couples and their families to make decisions, solve problems, set goals and utilize appropriate resources. This voluntary free program counsels expectant parents who have concerns related to their pregnancy. Please email us at or visit for more information.

• Did you know that on any given day, Catholic Charities West Michigan has over 300 children in its licensed foster homes? Foster care means providing a temporary, substitute, safe, nurturing home to children who may have been removed from their parent’s care due to neglect and/or abuse. If you are ready to open your home and heart to a child in need, please call (616) 356-6202, email us at or visit to find out how to become a foster parent.

• Post Abortion Healing – If you are struggling because of a past abortion or abortions, Project Rachel can help. Project Rachel, a program of Catholic Charities West Michigan, offers referrals to priests and counselors specially training to help those who have experienced abortion. We also offer Rachel’s Vineyard Retreats. The retreat offers an opportunity to step away for a while and focus on healing, grieving and reconnecting with God. The retreats are open to both women and men. All calls and emails are kept in the strictest confidence. For more information contact Maggie at (800)-800-8284 (MI only) or 616-340-1824 or email

• Bring the kids and your creativity to Gallery 303, God’s Kitchen Gift & Painting Studio. Paint your own plate, bowl, cup and other fun items with your favorite colors and designs! Join us for some great family fun and feel good knowing that the proceeds benefit the food and pantry programs of God’s Kitchen. Location: 303 Division Ave, Grand Rapids, phone: (616) 456-4110. Gallery hours: Tuesday – Saturday 10am to 4pm.

• Marriage, relationship and family counseling are available through Catholic Charities West Michigan’s (CCWM) Behavioral Health Department. We encourage you to call us toll free at 1-877-359-6523 to gather more information about our counseling services or to make an appointment with one of our highly qualified counselors. CCWM will provide you with a safe and confidential opportunity to address your pain to find hope and healing.

• Did you know that over 2,000 families strengthened their relationships through Catholic Charities West Michigan’s family preservation and support programs? Family Support Services assists and supports “at risk” families. In a non-traditional way, intensive, strength-based, solution focused counseling and family preservation services are provided in the home. CCWM has continued to successfully stregthen families in throughout West Michigan. For more information, please contact Aleaha Bowen at (616) 356-6262. • God’s Kitchen Food and Pantry programs are in need of donations! Please see the list below of suggested items that we are in need of. • Food Pantry o Peanut butter o Cereal o Baking items: sugar, flour, oil o Condiments: ketchup, mustard, mayo • Baby Pantry o Diapers sz 4-6 o Wet wipes o Clothing sizes 2t-6t o Summer shoes/sandals o Diaper bags o Sippy cups o bottles o Pacifiers




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