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Youth Group Update!

The SFM Youth Group met on Sunday, December 14th at the Digmann Hall in St. Francis. We had 11 youth join us, including 7 who were new to the group!

The kids made arts & crafts, including gingerbread houses, Christmas trees, and ornaments for their Christmas trees! After crafts they played some basketball!

We are so proud of how the SFM Youth Group has grown and is reaching more youth in the community!

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Engaging the Word: 12/21/14

As we have made our Advent journey we have been    reminded of our human condition, of how we have a    desire implanted deep within in us that draws us toward the good, draws us to God.  In our nature, however, we are free and can wander off track, but if we watch and are attentive to the signs we can persevere.  We have also been reminded that when the journey seems long we can rely on our hope and trust in the Lord and the             companionship of one another.  Last week, with a joy like the joy that arises on a ship when the sailor in the crow’s nest catches sight of land we celebrated those who point to and give witness for the good that is to come — Isaiah, Mary, and John the Baptist.

In these last days of Advent our readings draw our        attention to the truth that it is God who chooses to dwell among us; the initiative is God’s.  We have not first     invited God into our lives, but it is God who has first   invited us into the life of the Trinity.  The readings      proclaim as well God’s faithfulness and call us to focus on the glory of our true source and end, our Creator who calls us into friendship and participation in the loving plan of creation, to step into the Kingdom and live there for eternity.  The Kingdom of God is realized when God’s will is done on earth just as it is in heaven.  When we, like Mary, can utter the words “May it be done to me according to your word” or like Jesus in the garden can offer “not my will but yours be done,” the Kingdom    becomes that much more a reality.

As we make our final preparations for Christmas, may we prepare our hearts to welcome our God who chooses to dwell among us, and let us dispose our wills to be joined to the will of our loving Creator, bringing creation ever more to fulfillment.


1st Reading: Isaiah 61: 1-2, 10-11 ~  Responsorial: Luke 1: 46-50, 53-54

2nd Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-24  ~  Gospel: John 1: 6-8, 19-28


Engaging the Word: Third Sunday of Advent

1st Reading: Isaiah 61: 1-2, 10-11 ~ Responsorial: Luke 1: 46-50, 53-54

2nd Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-24 ~ Gospel: John 1: 6-8, 19-28

As we draw one week closer to the celebration of Christmas, we are reminded in the second reading from Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians to rejoice always. If we have the eyes to see, we find that the Lord is always near, always at work among us. Sometimes, however, we need others to help us see the Creator at work, and our other readings today from Isaiah, Luke, and John each celebrate those who point to what God is doing and will do in our midst.

Isaiah shouts from the mountain top that God will triumph, calling us to faith, hope, and action. Mary’s Magnificat in Luke is used for the responsory this week in place of a Psalm. “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord …” can also be translated “My soul magnifies the greatness of the Lord …” This magnification draws attention to what the Lord is doing; it points to the fact that God chooses to enter the world through a human yes. The greatness of God is that we have been created with freedom so that we might choose love. If God is the fullness of love, one might wonder how more love could be added to the equation, but God makes it possible by inviting creatures like us to cooperate freely by responding in love to God and one another. St. Irenaeus made the claim that the glory of God is the human person fully alive. Mary in her yes to the Lord points to this reality.

It is important, however, not to confuse that which points with that to which is pointed. In the reading from John’s Gospel, we hear John the Baptist adamantly assert that he is only announcing the one who is to come, helping to make ready the way of the Lord while helping to make his hearers ready to receive the Lord.

So, as we continue our Advent journey let’s be attentive to and celebrate those who put a magnifying glass on the Lord’s work among us, and let’s also remain attentive so that we might point out the Lord’s goodness to others who might be struggling to see it.



Engaging the Word: 12/07/14

The readings last week spoke to our human condition.  We have been made free creatures so that we might be loving creatures.  In our freedom, however, we find that we can wander and get off track.  Having been made for love, we do have the ability, if we pay attention, to sense when we are going astray.  So, Jesus offers wise counsel:  “Be watchful!  Be alert!”  If we remain alert, using all our senses we can be ready for the moment when inspiration will come.  If we are attentive we can move in the right direction, drawn by what we seek and informed by our true nature, children of God.

Sometimes it can seem like the journey is endless.  How long can we be attentive?  How long can we persist in our loving search?  This week’s readings remind us of the importance of hope.  With hope we can press on along the way.  Even if the journey is long and there are difficulties along the way, hope keeps us from despair.  The          difference that makes is astonishing.

When hope falters we need to rely on trust and our belief in God’s faithfulness.  If there is delay in reaching the end, we must trust that God’s intentions are good and for our benefit.  Coupled with our own faith, the support and encouragement of others who share our journey is also a great help to our perseverance.

Bolstered by our faith, hope, and companionship we not only persist but are prompted to prepare to receive what lies ahead of us.

As we continue our Advent journey toward Christmas, let’s encourage one another, let’s press onward, and let’s “prepare the way of the Lord” who also lovingly journeys toward us as we make our way.


1st Reading: Isaiah 40: 1-5, 9-11 ~  Responsorial: Psalms 85: 9-14

2nd Reading: 2 Peter 3: 8-14  ~  Gospel: Mark 1: 1-8


He Dog Family Night

We held our family night at the He Dog school last evening from 6-7 p.m. We had 3 families stop in and meet the teachers, visit the classroom, and shared some snacks. We had hot cocoa, juice, and cookies.

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Thanks to all who came out, and joined us. Stay tuned for information on more family nights this month!

If you would like to support St. Francis Mission’s Religious Ed programs, click here!

Youth Group Fun!

The SFM Youth Group held a meeting & game night on Sunday at the Digmann Hall in St. Francis from 6-9 p.m.. 9 youth came to the event.  We played games of basketball, dodge ball, and monopoly! We offered them some snacks of string cheese, crackers,cookies, apples, oranges, and plenty of water!

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The group is planning on having a meeting/game day on Sunday, December 14th, hopefully in the afternoon! Watch this space for more information!

Your support of the Mission makes programs like the SFM Youth Group possible! Learn how you can help us support more Youth events!

More Religious Education Family Nights This Week!


The St. Francis Religious Education Program will be having Family Nights this week for Religious Ed. The team will be in He Dog on Wednesday, 12/3 from 6-7 and in Spring Creek on Thursday, 12/4 from 6-7 at the blue Religious Education Building in Spring Creek.

Youth Night!

The SFM Youth Group had a great game night on Monday! Nine youth joined us at Digmann Hall for fun & games!

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We had a brief meeting, then they played basketball/volleyball/board games!

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We made sure we had plenty of water, fruits, crackers, and string cheese for some snacks. They are excited for the next meeting Sunday from 6-9 in Digmann Hall!

Engaging the Word: 11/30/14

In the reading from the Gospel of Mark assigned for this first Sunday of Advent we hear Jesus instruct his disciples, “Be watchful!  Be alert!”  It is important to note that when someone suggests an action or behavior to us it points to a couple important truths about who we are.  First, it assumes that we are capable of hearing and responding, but it also points to our freedom to take the opposite action or no action at all.

This truth of human freedom and the capacity to act is also noted in the reading assigned to this week from the prophet Isaiah.  Isaiah asks, “Why do you let us wander, O LORD …?”  The answer is, of course, that the Lord wants us free.  It is only in freedom that we can truly receive the Love and life that the Lord offers us and respond in love by living our lives to the full.

Isaiah’s question reveals another truth about our human condition:  we desire the Lord.  At the most fundamental level we want to be close to our Creator, to know God’s ways, to be pleasing to God, and to rest in God’s love.

So we have a drive to know and be formed by our God, but we are also free and can be distracted and get off track.  Advent is a good time to remind ourselves of these truths, that we have a desire for God yet in our freedom we wander.  It is also a good time to remind ourselves that our God has come among us as one of us, as one who shared our desires and our freedom, and has given us the good instruction to be attentive, to be alert to the ways in which God’s love and God’s call to love appear in our lives.  Our faith teaches us that the Kingdom of God is at hand, God’s rule in our lives is as close as the exercise of our freedom to turn from wandering and walk in union with Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  This Advent let’s recall that the Lord has come into the world and one day will come again.  Let’s remember, too, that in a way the Lord comes into our lives every time we notice God’s loving presence and call to us and we receive it in freedom, responding to our deepest and most true desires.  Be watchful!  Be alert!


1st Reading: Isaiah 63: 16-17, 19 ~  Responsorial: Psalms 80: 2-3, 15-16, 18-19                2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 1: 3-9  ~  Gospel: Mark 13: 33-37


Family & Youth Activities Tonight, November 24th!

There are a few activities going on this evening that we want to share!

  • The SFM Religious Education program will have a “family night” for the parents/guardians/students who are enrolled in the SFIS after school religion program on Monday, November 24th from 4-5 p.m at the Icimani building in St. Francis. If you have any questions, please call Jenny at 747-2436 or 828-1082.
  • The SFM Youth group will have a meeting/game night on Monday, November 24th from 6 p.m.- 9 p.m. at the Digmann Hall in St. Francis. We invite youth ages 10-18 years to join the youth group. If you have any questions or need more information, please call Jenny at 747-2436 or 828-1082.

Join us if you can!

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