Dear members and friends of the Sodality of Charity,
I wish you a merry and blessed Christmas. I remember you all in my Christmas Masses during this holy season. As usual, I am spending my Christmas and New Year at our St. Hugh of Lincoln church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This has become my yearly tradition. Indeed, every single Christmas since I became a priest in 2011, I have celebrated at St. Hugh’s. The people here have from the start made me feel like home, for the last time I spent my Christmas at home was in 2005.
Bishop Dolan was very happy how our St. Lucia procession turned out. If I can find a place which makes white gowns for older girls as well, I hope to make it even bigger next year. Here is a video which Cecilia Simpson made, and which Mr. Scott Richesson put on the SGG’s YouTube channel:
One of the traditions we have at St. Hugh’s is our annual children’s party on the feast of the Holy Innocents, December 28. I always read a little story to the children who attend, usually with a Christmas theme, and also a story with a good lesson - as every good fairy tale should have. A couple of years ago I read them the story “Toinette and the Elves.” It was written by Sarah Chauncey Woolsey (1835-1905), who was from Cleveland, Ohio, and wrote under the pen name Susan Coolidge. In her story the girl named Toinette learns a valuable lesson during Christmas time, namely to be good and nice to her family, including her siblings. “Toinette” is the French diminutive of “Antoinette”, feminine form of “Anthony”, meaning “priceless one.” The most famous carrier of that name of course was the Queen of France Marie Antoinette, who was guillotined by the revolutionaries. You can read the story of Toinette’s Christmas here:
If you want to listen the story you can do it through the YouTube link below. Or you can download the story to your computer from this link.
If you are blessed to spend Christmas with your family, I hope you do it with the spirit of gratitude. And I hope you also do it with the spirit of joy, despite that many grown-ups feel sad and worried because of the world affairs. Our Lord Jesus Christ was born into this world so that He would take away our sins. Sin is the only thing which can separate us from God, and Our Lady has crushed the head of the serpent and Our Lord made vain his schemes. It is said in the gospel of the midnight Mass that the shepherds “feared with a great fear.” But the angel said to them: “Fear not; for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, that shall be to all the people.”
May all you have a blessed Christmas and a fabulous year 2021!
Fr. Vili Lehtoranta
PS: Remember that you can support the future of the girls of our parish by donating here: