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Woe to the shepherds who mislead and scatter the flock of my pasture, says the LORD. (Jer. 23:1)

This scripture has resonated in my heart for over 17 years when the first news of the scandalous actions of abuse by priests come to light. In 2002, I was in the seminary when the Boston Globe uncovered the abuse of priests and the cover-up by leaders in the Archdiocese of Boston. Then revelations in other areas of the country followed. Just a little over a year ago, we heard of the predations of Mr. Theodore McCarrick, (once the Archbishop of Washington, now laicized from the priesthood), followed by the decades of abuse and cover-up in certain dioceses in Pennsylvania.

Now the storm has hit home, as our Diocese of Wichita released on September 19th the list of priests who have been found with a credible accusation. (Due to the timing of printing the bulletin, I cannot provide the names or number of the priests, but you can visit HERE to learn more.)
How saddened and ashamed I am by the priests who betrayed the trust of parents and children. There are no excuses for the horrible trauma the victims experienced through these criminal and sinful actions. These were pastors and shepherds whose deplorable actions have misled and scattered not just the individual victims, but a large number of the flock in general.
These actions are a grave violation of the sacrament of Holy Orders. A priest, who serves in the Person of Christ, should sacrifice himself for the good of the Church by imitating Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross. The sacrifice of a priest is to be for the benefit of the parish expressed in thoughts, words, and actions. The people of God deserve sacrificial priests.

The Church longs for and is in need of a humble repentance and an ongoing conversion and renewal of Her priests. Renewal and conversion of the Church must be ongoing and permanent. This renewal requires transparency to ensure the victims of abuse will always deserve our prayers, love and support, and predators are named and face justice in civil courts. The conversion of the entire clergy, bishops and priests, must flow from voluntary and regular penance in reparation for sin, and offer prayers for the victims of abuse and for the sanctification of the Church. These sacrifices and prayers are to mold the hearts of bishops and priests to become like the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which is full of sacrificial love and mercy. Pride – bishops and priests protecting their own power – is the sin that has brought us this crisis; a renewal in humility and the evangelical councils are the virtues to rescue us.

I’ll close with a direct appeal to those whose confidence in the Church, and especially in our diocese, has been shaken. We worship a God who became Man and experienced all things but sin, including the full range of emotions you may be feeling with this news. Christ knew the sorrow and disappointment of feeling abandoned in the Garden, and He experienced righteous anger in cleansing the Temple—Zeal for your house will consume me. (Jn 2:17) This zeal should motivate us, as well.

In a corrupt age, God called St. Francis to, “Repair my house, which is falling into ruins.” This, too, here and now, is our own call. We begin the repairs by keeping faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Cornerstone upon which the Catholic Church stands, and by partaking in the sacraments that are a sharing in His Divine Life. Having reinforced the foundation of our faith, we build from there. You and I are right not just to expect accountability and holiness from those consecrated to priestly and religious life and those who teach our children and care for the needy in our institutions, but to demand it. The publication of credibly accused Wichita priests is merely a starting point; now is the time for saints, whose passion for Christ and His Church burns with a purifying love. I pray that you join me in recommitting to repair our Mother Church, disfigured by those priests and bishops whom you trusted, and restore Her to beauty.

In the Immaculate Heart of Mary,

Fr. Andrew Heiman

When Father Drew was in Seminary he had to forgive someone who he had thought he couldn't. But, he did. Find out why on this week's Tea With Father.

 

Per request of many parishioners: Father Matt Siegman's Homily yesterday. Truly one of the best you'll hear. Put your earphones on, listen to it on your drive home from work, during your workout or while you grab sunshine poolside.

One life. We have ONE life. Jesus needs YOU to be the shining beacon of life. The Priests need YOU. We have such an opportunity to reach people that they can't. Thank you, Father Matt.

 

20190728 - 17th Sunday of Ordinary Time.mp3

Find out what the one thing Father Drew dreams of doing one day!!

Another flawless, fun interview with Father, even after the interviewer spilled hot tea all over his Cassock.

 
 
Today, July 22nd, the Church celebrates the feast of St. Mary Magdalene which was elevated to a feast day just a few years ago. She is an amazing and strong woman, a faithful disciple, and an extraordinary biblical figure. Except for the mother of Jesus, few women are more honored in the Bible than Mary Magdalene. Her faithful discipleship is evident in Scripture when she was one of the many “who were assisting them [Jesus and the Twelve] out of their means.” Her devotion is seen in the Passion of Our Lord when she was one of those who stood by the cross of Jesus with his mother. But the most profound action of Mary Magdalene was her profession of the Resurrection to the Apostles. She was first to see and announce that Jesus had risen from the dead. Chosen by the Lord to go to proclaim His triumph over sin and death to the Apostles, Mary Magdalen today is known as the "Apostle to the Apostles.”
 
To me, the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene brings awareness of two important truths: (1) each Christian is to follow the example of Mary Magdalene of announcing the Resurrection of Christ and (2) the importance of women in the Church and the spread of the faith.  The first truth is a realization that each of us has been chosen by the Lord to continue to trumpet the Resurrection as Mary Magdalen did. There are many people still locked in the room as the Apostles were out of fear, sadness, or sinfulness. They are waiting to be told that the Lord has risen, waiting to hear the Good News of the Gospel that drives out fear, turns sadness to joy, and forgives our sins. Mary Magdalene boldly went as the Lord instructed her. Her message led the Apostles to believe in the Resurrection. 
 
A second truth is the importance of women in the Church and their special role to spread the faith. It was not an accident that the Lord chose a woman to be the first to attest to his Resurrection, just like it was not an accident that the Lord chose men at the Last Supper to become priests. The womanhood of Mary Magdalene and her roles throughout the ministry of Jesus, especially his Passion, Death, and Resurrection, teaches that for the Church to be most effective, women must continue to proclaim their strong faith in the Lord through their jobs, various and important Church ministries, and in particular the ministry of the family (be it the domestic church as a wife/mother, or the universal church in the consecrated life or active lay person). I am so thankful to God for the Mary Magdalenes in my life, especially my mother who passed on our shared faith to me and my brothers, and whose example of faithfulness to God, the Church, and my dad helped teach and guide me to become a priest. Today, I offer a special thanks to all the wonderful women of the parish who help in so many ways to give witness to the Joy of the Resurrection. Ladies, your stewardship of time, talent, and treasure is a great example to me and the entire parish. I am thankful to God that this parish has so many women following the example of St. Mary Magdalene--you are a vital component to the effectiveness of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and the spread of the Gospel.
 
May God continue to bless all of you through the intercession of Mary Magdalene and Mary, the Mother of God.

What was the one thing Father Drew's mom wanted to know on the night of his Ordination that still brings tears to his eyes? Tea With Father, getting to know our Pastor.

Great strides have been made in reaching our goal of $1.6 million. Watch this video for more details!