CYCLE A SEPTEMBER 24, 2017
25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
"Are you envious because I am generous?" The landowner in today's Gospel parable surprised everyone. Contrary to standard practice, he paid all of his laborers the same wage, regardless of how many hours they had worked! Of course this was a very pleasant surprise for those who had begun their job late in the day. And, understandably, it was something of a disappointment for those who had toiled since the morning. From their perspective, they should have gotten more than the others. But in fact the landowner was not cheating anyone; he was simply being especially generous with the latecomers.
This story would have had a special meaning for the Jewish audience listening to Jesus. They, the Chosen People, were the laborers who had started at 9:00 am. They belonged to the group with a long history of worshipping the true God. Non-Jewish Gentiles, on the other hand, had appeared late in the game. Jesus was making the point that just because he would offer the same salvation and mercy to everyone, there should be no reason for the Jews to complain. They had received their promised Messiah; so what if, in God's mercy, he allowed others who had not waited so long to be saved as well? Divine generosity is not meant to be a cause for jealousy.
Now, we may feel removed from the concerns of those Jews. But the basic lesson remains relevant: that we ought to appreciate God's generosity, even when it reaches to those whom we may not expect God to forgive. Those who have long been faithful, for example, might think they deserve more benefits than sinners who repent late in life. But instead, we should all rejoice to see God's mercy extended to EVERYONE, no matter when they joined the fold.
A Note from the Bishop regarding DACA
Scripture challenges us to see each other through the eyes of God and to never turn our back on the vulnerable and those in need. So it is with great concern that I and my brother bishops react to the news of President Trump’s ending of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Since 2012, this program has given hope to immigrant youth of reaching their full God-given potential and fulfilling their promise of gratefully giving back to the only country most have ever known. In calling for the program’s end, President Trump has given Congress six months to replace DACA with an alternative program that can be lawfully enacted without court challenges. While disheartened at DACA’s end, it is my fervent prayer that Congress will come together in a bipartisan effort to create a replacement program that will preserve the hope that DACA has provided to so many. I encourage you to contact your legislators to ask their support for an alternative program.
Please Welcome Kasey Ross
Kasey Ross is a new intern and employee for St. Thomas the Apostle.
Kasey is part of the Echo program for the University of Notre Dame. She will be working as one of the Catechists for the 4th grade RE class, helping with the CREED program, and helping to run the Edge program. She will be here for the next two years except during the summer of 2018, when she will return to Notre Dame to take summer courses for her Masters in Theology.
Kasey is originally from Enid, Oklahoma, where her family still resides. She attended Oklahoma State University and earned a BA in Strategic Communications with a minor in Philosophy.
Kasey was active in ministry during her years of undergrad, where she taught a third grade RE class and volunteered as a small group leader for the local youth group. She also prepared and led a weekly Bible study for her peers for three years.
We are blessed and grateful for her presence here at St. Thomas. Please introduce yourself when you have chance and welcome her!
Adult Faith Formation Survey
Adult Faith Formation Survey-Last Chance
Thanks to all who have completed the short Adult Faith Formation survey. We will be closing the survey on Friday, Sept. 29 so you still have time to provide your input.
The Adult Faith Formation committee provides programs to increase our parishioners’ knowledge of their Catholic faith and teachings, to help us better understand God’s will and plan for us, and to experience His unconditional love and mercy. Periodically, we need to assess our programming needs at the parish in order to present programs and events that will best serve these objectives. For example, we have added “Formed” to our program offerings, and many of you have taken advantage of the great Catholic programs on Formed (www.formed.org ), which you can watch at your convenience at home.
In order to help our Adult Faith Formation committee plan for future needs, we would like you to complete an online survey that can be found at AFFSurvey. Click here to fill be directed to the survey.
The survey should only take you 5-10 minutes to complete. If you are unable to complete the survey online, there are paper copies available on the table in the back of the Narthex, and a box to submit the completed survey. Thank you in advance for your help with this! Any questions, please contact Warren and Shawna Hunt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Register for Religious Education/Sacrament Preparation
It’s time to register your children for Religious Education classes grades K-5. Classes begin on Sunday, September 10, 10:20am and students need to be registered in advance. If your child is in the 2nd grade and baptized he/she will be prepared to receive First Holy Communion and they must begin classes in September. Students in the 5th grade or higher will receive preparation for Confirmation.
Time is limited so register now! Call Jill St. Yves, 986-9885 to register or for additional information.
Saturday 7:00 PM Spanish Vigil
Sunday 9:00 AM
Sunday 11:30 AM
Mon-Fri 8:30 AM
Saturday 9:00 AM
Rosary immediately following daily Mass
40 minutes before weekend Masses (not including Spanish)
Please note if you need to check on room availability for our facility, please contact the parish office at 865-986-9885. The below list of events is for special events and does not include every activity taking place everyday. Thank you.
Friday 9:00 AM-12:00 PM
Closed 12:00 PM-12:30 PM for lunch
ROSARY BEFORE MASS
The Rosary is prayed 40 minutes before 5:00PM Mass, 9:00AM and 11:30AM Mass. If you are willing to help lead the Rosary, you should contact the coordinator for each Mass; 5:00PM, Jim Gecsei at 803-3555; 9:00AM, Ralph Pubillones at 458-6111; and 11:30AM, Pam Wallace at 657-3445.
MORNING PRAYER ON FRIDAYS
Morning Prayer on Fridays after Daily Mass, starting June 2nd. Please join us!
Deacon Dave's Second Helpings
DEACON DAVE'S SECOND HELPINGS
Ever try to remember a homily on Monday? Often the things we hear on Sunday are inspiring and should be used to fuel our spiritual lives during the week. But we often fail to remember the key point that would assist us in applying the gospel to our lives. Try reading Deacon Dave's reflections on the Sunday gospel. Deacon Dave's Second Helpings is a weekly blog on the Sunday readings. You can find his homilies through a link on the St. Thomas web site. Click the link below to get to Deacon Dave's Second Helpings.
FIRST FRIDAY 24-HOUR
On the first Friday of every month, parishioners will have the opportunity to spend an hour with our Lord at all times between 9 AM on First Friday and 8:30 AM on Saturday. A sign-up placard will be positioned in the narthex covering all hours.
This broadened First Friday devotion is being offered because of the wonderful response to the worldwide 24-hour Adoration held earlier this month. There were at least four parishioners in the church for each hour. In order for Eucharistic Adoration to become a permanent observance on First Fridays, it is imperative that there be at least two persons in the church during each hour. The continued success of 24-hour Adoration depends on a core group of adorers who commit to the same hour each time. This ensures that all hours are filled and there are no gaps in attendance. Please prayerfully consider committing to a specific hour for each First Friday. The graces and blessings associated with Eucharistic Adoration are abundant.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Reconciliation is available Tuesdays at 6:00 PM and Saturdays from 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM.
You may also call the parish office to make an appointment at 865-986-9885.
Link to USCCB information on the Sacrament of Reconciliation Reconciliation
Read the Latest Catholic News!
The next Virtus Training, “Protecting God’s Children”, will be at St. Thomas in the Deacon Jose Room on Monday, September 25, 6:00-9:00pm.
This training is required for all adults who work in ministry for children or vulnerable adults: catechists, youth facilitators, VBS adult volunteers, Stephen Ministers, Eucharistic Ministers to the homebound.
If you participate in one of these ministries or plan to in the future or if you are a concerned parent or grandparent and have not already attended a Virtus training session, please contact Jill St. Yves, 986-9885.
Blessing of Animals
Blessing of Animals
OCTOBER 1, 2017
Bring your animals on a leash for a blessing at the field next to the church.
Kairos team #28 will be going into the Morgan County Correctional Complex on October 26 through the 29th. We will be ministering to the inmates and bringing the word of God to them. As in the past we are in need of 2700 dozen Chocolate Chip kookies. The goal for St. Thomas parish is 500 dozen. In order to comply with the rules of the complex, we are limited to only Chocolate Chip cookies. Following are the instructions for preparing the kookies.
The Key ingredient for the kookies is Prayer
Pray as an individual or as a group over the ingredients before and during mixing. Pray over the kookies as you drop them onto the cookie sheets for baking. Ask God to use your kookies as a source for His Love to shine on the inmates and staff on this Kairos weekend. Pray each kookie brings the resident, officers and staff who eats them closer to God.
Packing the kookies
After baking, allow kookies to cool to room temp. Lay them in the freezer. When they are frozen, they will not likely crumble when stacked into the bags. Use one gallon Ziploc bags or the equivalent. Do not use aluminum foil. Put one dozen per bag. Place the kookies across the bottom of the bag and roll them up like a tube of Pringle chips. Tape the bag if necessary. Please keep the bags frozen until the collection dates. For those not inclined to make the kookies from scratch, tubes (not cases) of kookie dough can be purchased from Gordon Food Services on Kingston Pike for less than $15. This will make 10 dozen kookies. If you go this route, call them ahead of time at 560-8859 to order your dough. When you check out, tell them these are being purchased through the Fairview United Methodist Church and the sales tax will be waived. This arrangement has been made with their manager, Tyler.
The collection dates for the kookies will be after Masses on October 21st and 22nd. For those not wanting to bake kookies, we will be selling $5 “meal tickets” to be given to the residents to symbolize the care our parish has for them. Another way to support our team is through prayer. Log onto www.3dayol.org and look for the Morgan County Correctional Facility. You can then select a period of time when you will be praying for the guests, the team members and the success of our weekend.
God bless you all,
Greg Brennan, Jim Mattavi, Stu McFadden, Tom Shaughnessy and Harry Westcott, Kairos Team #28
Have you lost an important person in your life?
Does your life seem very empty?
Do you think no one knows how you feel?
Are the feelings I’m having normal?
In an effort to meet the needs of our parishioners we want to offer a little help to those who are or have suffered the loss of someone dear. Please consider joining us on Wednesday evening, Oct. 4th at 5:30 PM. in the Deacon Jose Rivera Room.
St. Thomas is offering an evening get-together just for you. You can enjoy meeting others at dinner and then getting to know those who have been struggling with the loss of their loved one (husband, wife, child, grandchild, or spouse of a different faith).
The weekend before our get together we will have a table in the narthex after all the Masses to answer questions you might have. You can then tell us if you will be attending the get together or please call Claire Martin at 458-0171 to let us know you will be coming
Adult Faith Formation Programs
Volunteers Needed for Alpha Kitchen
Would you like to help Alpha in the kitchen? We only need about 2 hours of you time between 3:30-6:00pm on Tuesday nights. Alpha runs every Tuesday from September 26 to November 14. You would not have to help every Tuesday night. Please contact Sandra Huff, 865-458-5734 or email@example.com if you are willing to be part of the Alpha kitchen team. Lots of fun and a wonderful service to our parish family!We are seeking additional volunteers to assist on our parish floor cleaning team. This is an opportunity to serve with other volunteers in keeping our floors clean in the church and parish Family Life Center. By having several volunteers we are able to keep the time requirement to a minimum, only one or two mornings per month, from approximately 10:00 am-12:30 pm.
SOCIETY ST. VINCENT DE PAUL
On September 27, the Church celebrates the feast of St. Vincent de Paul, who knew that “God had sent him to bring good news to the poor.” Together with your gifts, the members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul continue his work and mission in our parish. Thank You for you food and diaper donations this week. The next regular meeting will be on Friday, October 6 in the Deacon Jose Room at 9:30 following mass and morning prayer. Call Larry Finneran at (865) 657-9119 for more information. Note that the Society can also accept donations of working washers, dryers, ranges, counter top microwaves and small to medium size refrigerators.
The role of Stephen Ministers is to give care. They listen, empathize, encourage, pray, and provide emotional and spiritual support on a weekly basis to hurting people for as long as the need persists. God works in and through them to bring hope and healing. If you are feeling lonely, experiencing a crisis, struggling through a difficult time, or simply stressed by everyday life, contact Barbara Brennan 458-8922 or Tom Ringenbach 458-0915 to learn more about Stephen Ministry. Our Stephen Ministers are ready to care for you!
If You Would Like to Volunteer...
The Weekend Food Backpack program for Middle Junior High students is in full swing now! This program is sponsored by our parish St. Vincent DePaul Society. Every Wednesday at 11:45 AM a team of two volunteers drive from church to the school (about a 10 minute ride) to pack the 50 bags which are distributed each week to children in need. This food supplements their nutrition over the weekend. You do not need to be a SVDP member to help. It takes about one hour and you would probably be needed to help about once a month. Please contact Kathy Trombley... email: firstname.lastname@example.org; cell 865-805-5902 (please feel free to leave message). Thank you.
SAVE THE DATE
Sunday, December 3, 2017
ADVENT BY CANDLELIGHT
Mark your calendar. We are planning our annual Advent by Candlelight on Sunday, December 3rd @ 2:00 PM. Start putting your tables together for another spiritual and enlightening afternoon with other Christian women.
There are several important ministries in our parish which are performed by dedicated parishioners behind the scenes. One of these ministries is the care and handling of the linens used for Masses. This primarily involves the laundering and ironing of the various items so that there will be an adequate supply of clean linens at all times. Our supply of linens requires laundering about once a week. This ministry is currently being performed by one parishioner. Ideally, it would is preferable to have two or more to spread the workload and provide backup during vacations and other absences. If you are interested in helping with this effort, please contact Jim Polhamus in the parish office at 986-9885.
The Sacrament of Confirmation will be received in 5thgrade or older. Students will be prepared for Confirmation through their regular religion class either Sunday mornings for 5th grade or Wednesday evenings for grades 6-12 and all CREED Sundays.
Candidates will also attend a one-day diocesan retreat.
Candidates for Confirmation are expected to attend Mass faithfully each week.
The Sacrament of Confirmation will take place at the Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus in Knoxville on May 6, 2018, 4:00pm.
Students must register for Edge and Life Teen after Mass, at the parish office, or at 6pm Wed Sept 6th. Both programs begin Sept 6th.
LIFE TEEN BAND!
The music ministry is gearing up for a new year of Life Teen Masses! We are looking for the following people who might be interested in participating in this ministry:
- Instrumentalists. We especially need guitar players (electric guitar, and electric or acoustic Bass, and drums.) These folks need to be mature musicians who won’t need lessons or other help with playing.
- Youth Singers! We would love to have more singers for these Masses, especially young adults and teens!
The Life Teen Mass is the 4th Sunday of each month, at the 11:30 Mass. Our 1st Mass will be on August 27. These Masses coincide with the Creed Program, which is also each month on the 4th Sunday. Creed lunch is at 12:30, and Creed begins at 1:00. This is a nice tie in for both of these programs. Please get in touch with Marla Emerson (phone # on front of the bulletin) for more info. or to sign up for the Life Teen band!
VISION TRIP TO NPH EL SALVADOR
NOVEMBER 15-19, 2017
Join us to visit your godchild or learn how you can become a sponsor on this adventure that will change your life! We will leave on November 15th and return the 19th with many precious photos and memories. Sign up now. Please call for details or any questions you may have. Jan and Stu McFadden 865-458-3911.
A SPECTACULAR EVENING OF ENTERTAINMENT BLUEGRASS TO OPERA
Bo Carey & Friends Esteban with Laura & Christian
Friday, September 29 @ 7:00pm
St. Thomas the Apostle Parish Family Life Center
Advance Tickets $20 At the door/if available $25
For information about pre-concert dinner & reserved seating, call Arlene Roberts 865-603-8079 or Sherry Qualkenbush 865-643-0750.
QUALIFIED CHARITABLE DISTRIBUTIONS
From the Diocese:
In December 2015, Congress made permanent a law allowing individuals to give up to $100,000 to charity directly from an individual retirement account (IRA) when they are over 70 ½ years old without counting the distribution as taxable income. This type of charitable gift is called a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD).
While IRA donations can be acknowledged by the charity, they should not be tax receipted. There is no income tax deduction for a donor’s contribution through an IRA. However, the sum going to charity is not included in his or her adjusted gross income. Donating these assets as a charitable rollover means the donor does not have to take a minimum required distribution beginning at 70 ½ that they would have to pay taxes on.
Sometimes it is difficult for charities to know if a contribution is one of these donations. All tax letters from St. Thomas will have a disclaimer on them this year stating that if any contribution were a from an IRA, the donor should consult with their tax professional regarding deductibility.
ROSARY BEFORE MASS
The Rosary is prayed 40 minutes before 5:00PM Mass and 11:30AM Mass; starting Sunday, July 2, the Rosary preceding the 9:00AM Mass will start. If you are willing to help lead the Rosary, you should contact the coordinator for each Mass; 5:00, Jim Gecsei at 803-3555, 9:00, Ralph Pubillones at 458-6111, and 11:30, Pam Wallace at 657-3445.
SING TO THE LORD A NEW SONG! HYMN SUGGESTIONS!
Do you have a favorite hymn that you would love to sing during our weekend Masses? The Music Ministry would like your ideas and input!! You are invited to submit your suggestions for your favorite hymns. We have placed a large sign board in the narthex with spaces for you to write in your favorite hymn from our current hymnals: The St. Augustine Hymnal or Flor Y Canto. All we ask is for you to write in the name of the hymn AND the hymn number. That’s it! Your suggestions will help us to plan out future music schedules. Thanks from the St. Thomas Music Ministry.
If you would register your Kroger Plus card and designate St. Thomas as your charitable choice once each quarter Kroger will send St. Thomas a donation check. The donation amount is based on how much we collectively spend each quarter at Kroger. Nothing else is required on your part, just shop as you normally would. This last quarter Kroger sent us a check for $104.21. To register visit Kroger.com. If you do not have computer access you can call 1(800) 576-4377, OPTION 3, or just visit the customer service desk and they will help you. The St. Thomas program number with Kroger is 42126. It is easy and the church benefits. If you are not registered, please consider doing so and if you are registered, thank you!
ROSARY MAKERS NEED YOUR HELP
The parish Rosary makers are in need of older rosary beads. If you have an old rosary that cannot be repaired or is missing beads consider donating what you have to our rosary makers. One of the challenges we have is sourcing beads to repair older rosaries that have sentimental value but are missing beads. Drop them off at the office or call Pam Geoghegan (865.657.0949) if you have any questions.
New to St. Thomas?
We welcome you to St. Thomas and hope that you will soon feel like a part of our community of faith.
If you are visiting with us or have not registered at the parish, we would love to get to know you better! You may stop in the office to register or pick-up a registration form in church or even register online (see further down on this page or click here). Or if you would like to just learn more from a member of our Welcome Committee, please contact email@example.com.
If you have recently registered and have not heard from our Welcome Committee, please contact Deacon Dave Pecot at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Welcome Committee's mission is not only to help you to know about St. Thomas but to also help you feel to like St. Thomas is your home and an extension of your family.
FORMED for St. Thomas the Apostle
By the Augustine Institute
The Catholic Faith – On Demand – Anytime
Movies – Books – Interactive Video Programs
There are hundreds of options for you to view from your home computer, laptop, or smart cell phone at no charge any time of the day or night with our Parish subscription.
We have found that the site works best using the Chrome or Firefox browser.
Above on our site, there is a menu item, called "FORMED for St. Thomas the Apostle", click on that menu item to be taken directly to our FORMED page.
Once you are on our FORMED page, under the Parish Code, you will see a space for your email address. Add your email address and you will be prompted to put in a password for future use. After this, you can click on “WELCOME TO FORMED” and select that video play button to learn more about what will be available to you as a new user
Youth Volunteers and Honorees at KOC Awards
Women's Guild Sponsors Two Successful Events
The Women's Guild had a sold out Luncheon and Style show for our August event.
Our 18th annual Card Party and luncheon was again a successful event. Rose Remund won the beautiful quit donated by Tellico Village Quilters.
Thank you to all those who helped and participated!
Steubenville Youth Conference Video
Youth and Leaders travel to Steubenville Youth Conference
Youth and Leaders travel to Stebubenville Youth Conference
Living Stations of the Cross
The staff of St. Thomas the Apostle welcome you. We are a vibrant and active parish that seeks to spread God's word and our faith with positive action. We are here to help you!
Please click on the staff member names below for more information.
- Fr. Doug Owens, Pastor
- Fr. Julian Cardona, Associate Pastor
- Deacon Sean Smith, Deacon
- Deacon Dave Pecot, Deacon
- Phil Johnson, Business Manager
- Lupe Cortes, Secretary/Receptionist
- Kevin Cooney, Director of Sports,Family and Youth Ministry
- Jill St. Yves, Director of Religious Education
- Kasey Ross, Echo Program Apprentice
- Marla Sloane Emerson, Music Coordinator
- Jim Polhamus, Liturgical Coordinator
- Christine Lucheon, Bookkeeper/Webmaster
Please help us to be attentive to those who are ill, homebound or in the hospital. Either the patient or family member must notify the parish office (865-986-9885) if they or a family member is ill or in the hospital. (We will not be notified by the hospital due to patient confidentiality.)
Communion can be brought to the home or healthcare facility.
If you would like to donate flowers for the altar, please contact the parish office at 865-986-9885.
The Women's Guild sponsored several fund raising events throughout 2016. At our January meeting, funds raised from these events were distributed to Catholic, Loudon and Monroe County charities. The recipient agencies attended our meeting and provided us with an overview of their services.
Agencies pictured: St. Vincent De Paul Society, Catholic Charities, Boy Scouts, St. Mary's Legacy Clinic. Seminarian Stephen Hamby, Boys & Girls Club Loudon County, Branches of Monroe County,Friendship Kitchen, Good Samaritan, Iva's Place, Child Advocacy Center, CCW Project - Right to Life and Smokey Mountain Service Dogs.
At the Guild's February meeting, we toured the Farragut Museum and enjoyed lunch together at Mimi's Café.
Edge Color Run
Use password STAYG2016
Trunk or Treat
St. Thomas Women's Guild Card Party
Youth Help and Dance the Night Away at KOC Polish Night
Advent by Candlelight
St. Thomas Women's Guild November Meeting
Spaghetti and Karaoke
Women's Guild Fashion Show Fun
Spanish Living Stations of the Cross
Youth Living Stations of the Cross 2016
Youth Rafting Trip-September 6
Our Amazing Youth at Catholic Heart Workcamp
Mass Intention Guidelines
In an effort to make more Masses available for your intentions but to also continue to follow The Code of Canon Law and to be fair to all parishioners, the following are our new guidelines for requesting Mass Intentions.
- Multiple intentions will be available for each Mass.
- Because there will be more than one intention per Mass, we will no longer accept any donations; as according to Canon Law, we are only allowed to accept one donation per Mass and we want to be fair to all.
- The names of the people who are being prayed for may no longer be announced individually in the Prayers of the Faithful during Mass, as the list could be lengthy at times. The celebrant will know the names of the daily intentions and will be keeping those people in prayer during Mass.
- The names will continue to be listed in the bulletin.
If you have questions regarding these changes, please contact Fr. Doug directly.
Readings for the Week of September 24, 2017
- Sunday: Is 55:6-9 / Ps 145 / Phil 1:20c-24, 27a / Mt 20:1-16a
- Monday: Ezr 1:1-6 / Ps 126 / Lk 8:16-18
- Tuesday: Ezr 6:7-8, 12b, 14-20 / Ps 122 / Lk 8:19-21
- Wednesday: Ezr 9:5-9 / Tb 13 / Lk 9:1-6
- Thursday: Hg 1:1-8 / Ps 149 / Lk 9:7-9
- Friday: Dn 7:9-10, 13-14 or Rv 12:7-12a / Ps 138 / Jn 1:47-51
- Saturday: Zec 2:5-9, 14-15a / Jr 31 / Lk 9:43b-45
- Next Sunday: Ez 18:25-28 / Ps 25 / Phil 2:1-11 or 2:1-5 / Mt 21:28-32