Pastor's Blog for March 3, 2019

Rudy Dejelo and his wife Cora were one of the couples who journeyed with me to Italy this past October. While there, Rudy complained of stomach pains and it was discovered very shortly after we arrived back in Cleveland that he was suffering from liver cancer. Just after they began to give him Hospice care, Rudy went home to the Lord. Having seen how much Rudy & Cora cared for each other in Italy, I know how blessed they both were in their marriage and in their family. They have wonderful children & grandchildren and are people who have been very actively involved in the parish for many years. In fact they still host a prayer group at their home which has been meeting for years. God has blessed them and they in turn have blessed us. May Rudy now receive the reward promised to those who are faithful.

I can’t say much about another man named Ronald Yurich who passed away as he was only with us here at St. Leo’s for a few months. He was originally from the east side and had 5 children and several grandchildren. His funeral service was presided over by Deacon Pat when I was away. Whether a parishioner is well known or with us only a short time, we remember them with gratitude in our prayer and entrust them to the loving hands of God.

As we enter the holy season of Lent with Ash Wednesday this week, I invite you to join us for Mass at either 8:30am (with our school children) or at 7:00pm. This Friday of course begins our wonderful Fish Fry which so many people, parishioners & neighbors, come to enjoy. I would like to encourage you to come to our Stations of the Cross which will be held after each Fish Fry at 7pm in the church. Deacon Pat or myself will be leading them this year and we will include some music as we want more people to take advantage of this wonderful prayer opportunity which helps us to unite our sufferings to those of Christ, whose Passion helps us to make sense of our pain and brings us hope and meaning and strength. Please consider experiencing this unique prayer that has such a long tradition in our Church.

I am also looking forward to hearing three different people speak on their experience of personal struggle and how their faith has given them great insight & strength. They will be with us on Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday of the last week of March. Please mark the date of this Lenten Mission in your calendar.

Finally, I received a call from my surgeon letting me know that no cancer was found in my lymph nodes and that it seems to have been contained in the prostate, so that was good news for me to hear. I will still have regular check ups but I know that your prayers for me helped me tremendously through this and I only pray now that this experience with cancer will help me to become more understanding of those who are sick and struggle with illness of any kind. That would be the best way I could thank you for your support these last few weeks.