Our parish is located in the heart of the scenic East Tennessee, not far from Knoxville and the Great Smoky Mountains. Whether you are from this area or visiting, we welcome you to join us.
Mission: St. Thomas the Apostle is a Roman Catholic community centered in Faith and fully engaged in Evangelizing, Discipleship, Prayer and Worship that is functioning as a well-informed Parish Community.
GOSPEL MEDITATION - ENCOURAGE DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF SCRIPTURE
November 18, 2018 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
As we edge closer to the closing of the liturgical year, the Church selects readings that remind us of the final close: the second coming of Christ. It's easy, perhaps, to forget that this is a dogma of our Catholic faith. We see this dramatic end times language in today's Gospel. "The sun will be darkened ... and the stars will be falling from the sky."
As Christians and as human beings, we know all things will come to an end. "But of that day or hour, no one knows." The "end of the world" and end of time at Jesus' coming is in a future unknown. But God has given us beautiful reminders of this truth. We see the signs and symbols of ending all around us -- nightfall at the end of each day; the life cycle of crops coming alive, bearing fruit, and being harvested; our own death. That, too, will come at an unknown day and hour. But that is the way of things. Even as God created in Genesis, He gave us a sense of time -- the sun rising and setting, a beginning and an end -- to mark our days.
So how do we welcome these built-in forms of measurement? Do we take time to quietly recollect at the end of each day? Do we see every morning as a fresh start for mercies new? Do we observe the seasons and reflect on what they might be speaking to us of God and His glory? "Heaven and earth will pass away, but my works will not pass away." The little beginnings and little ends are opportunities to renew our faith in Jesus, if only we have the eyes to see!
Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday and now we have Giving Tuesday
Please consider assisting our St. Thomas youth in funding their trips to conferences.
We are raising funds so our youth may travel and experience God and fellowship as we grow in faith together. Trips such as the March for Life, the National Catholic Youth Conference (NCYC), Catholic Heart Work Camp, Steubenville Youth Conference, and the LifeTeen summer camp at Covecrest have a huge impact on our youth in their journey of faith. Please, help us help even more youth get involved in these trips by making a generous donation to our parish.
Click on the picture to be redirected to the iGiveCatholic website. If you wish to support this cause but do not wish to give online, feel free to write a check to St. Thomas and put iGiveCatholic on the memo line.
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.
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.
MORNING PRAYER ON FRIDAYS
Morning Prayer on Fridays after Daily Mass.
Please join us!
The Rosary is prayed 40 minutes before 5:00PM Mass 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.
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
Gus Lloyd, popular radio host of Sirius XM morning show, Seize the Day, on the Catholic Channel will be coming to St. Thomas the Apostle as our guest for 3 evening events this December. His “Minute in the Church” publications are well known and we will be sharing excerpts in our bulletin throughout the summer and fall.
The November Women’s Guild meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 14th. We will be meeting in the Deacon Jose Rivera room of the Parish Family Life Center, after the morning Mass about 9:30 to put together Soup In A Jar. The Soup In A Jar will be distributed to the 83 clients that St. Thomas currently provides food to through Friendship Kitchen. Also, we will be doing cookies in a jar that will be sold at our Craft and Bake Sale Fund Raiser in November. Come join us for this fun meeting! The date of the meeting was changed for November ONLY due to Veteran's Day. All ladies of the parish are welcome to join us. Information on the December meeting will be forthcoming. Have a good Thanksgiving by giving thanks to the Lord. Hope to see you on the 14th!
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have recently registered and have not heard from our Welcome Committee, please contact Deacon Dave Pecot at email@example.com.
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.
The Veterans Committee is finalizing its plans to salute our veterans with its yearly Veterans Day Observance.
Mark your calendar and join us on Monday, November 12, at a 10 AM Mass, with Father Ray celebrant, followed by a reception with a guest speaker, at the PFLC.
A Table of Honor will be set up at the PFLC, where pictures of your Military Service member may be placed. Be sure to include your name and telephone number on the reverse side.
You may begin bringing your photographs not earlier than the weekend of 3 November. There will be a table outside the Deacon Jose Room for leaving your photograph. You may pick up your photographs immediately.
PRAY AND STITCH MINISTRY MEETING
Wednesday, November 28, following morning Mass, Room 118. Looking for an opportunity to support others in need, from the comfort of your own home? Come and see... Please bring yarn and Size J crochet hook or Size 7 knitting needles. Patterns and instructions will be provided. Contact Penny Visconti for more information, (865) 408-9996.
KEEP CHRIST IN CHRISTMAS
In today’s secular world with all the attacks on our Catholic Faith there is one easy way for us to evangelize our belief in Jesus Christ. Remember He said: “Do not be afraid.” Proudly display a “Keep Christ in Christmas” magnet on your car. They are available for sale in the Narthex both in English and Spanish. We also have lapel pins that you could wear anywhere. Let those around you know that Christ is our Lord.
You’ve heard it time and time again: “Pull yourself together. . . Cheer up . . . Tough it out. . . It’s not that bad.” Perhaps people have said it to you. Or perhaps you keep saying it to yourself. But it hasn’t helped. You’re still hurting. Here’s the good news: You don’t have to go through your struggles alone. Our Stephen Ministers are trained caregivers who will walk with you, listen to you, and provide confidential, one-to-one care as you search through the pieces and find what is truly in your heart. To learn more about what Stephen Ministry can do for you, contact Barbara Brennan 458-8922 or Tom Ringenbach 458-0915.
SOCIETY OF ST. VINCENT DE PAUL
In today’s Gospel Jesus tells us: “I want you to observe that this poor widow contributed more than all the others who donated to the treasury. They gave from their surplus wealth, but she gave from her want, all that she had to live on.” Ask yourself “Am I only giving from my surplus wealth?” and then put your gift in the parish charity collection this month so that those who are suffering will be able to know God’s love and care. The next regular meeting will be on Friday, November 16 in the Deacon Jose Rivera Room at 1:00 pm. Call Larry Finneran at 865-657-9119 for more information.
IMPORTANT TRAFFIC SAFETY MESSAGE
We have received a request from our traffic safety officers, asking us to PLEASE encourage parishioners to help keep everyone safe and traffic flowing when entering or exiting Hwy 321. Pay very close attention and follow directions from the traffic officers. Our cooperation is extremely important! Be alert. Be courteous. Be safe. THANK YOU.
NPH NEEDS YOUR HELP
We will be going to NPH El Salvador again this year and we need your help with filling large luggage for the children. Items needed are: Toothbrushes (adult sizes only); Toothpaste; Bras sizes 32, 34, 36; Bikini panties girls sizes 12,14,16 and women’s sizes 5, 6; Boys underwear boxers sizes 12-14-16 and adult small; boys white socks for shoes 6-9; stickers, Crayola color markers, permanent markers (black, blue, red) coloring books. Please – No pencils, small scissors, or Crayons. Items must be new and dropped off at church no later than Tuesday, November 6th. Thank you for your help. Stu & Jan McFadden 458-3911.
3RD GRADE CATECHIST NEEDED!
Beginning in December, we need a catechist for 3rd grade. Please consider using your time and talent to pass on the love of Jesus Christ and our rich Catholic faith to our children. All materials and guide books are provided. Contact Jill St. Yves, firstname.lastname@example.org or 986-9885.
BAKERS, it’s that time of the year again! The Women’s Guild fall bake sale is just around the corner so get your ideas and recipes ready. We could use pies, cakes, cookies, breads, jars of jelly and preserves, pickles or any of your wonderful specialties. The event will take place after all Masses on the weekend of November 17-18. You can find us in the parish hall. Many parishioners buy goodies for their Thanksgiving house guests. Many thanks for your support.
The time for the craft sale is getting close. We would like to have your home crafted items turned in by November the 10th. We need time to price items and determine how much space we need. You may call for pick up at 408-2339. Remember there will be many nice items for your holiday gift giving. Delicious baked goods will also be available. Plan to shop after Masses on the weekend of November 17-18. You can find us in the parish hall. Come by to support the Women’s Guild.
FRESH EVERGREEN DECORATIONS
Get an early start on your Christmas decorating! Give yourself, your family, and friends a special greeting with a fresh fragrant Evergreen Wreath, Mini-Christmas Tree, or Candlelit Centerpiece. The Knights of Columbus will be taking orders in the Narthex after Mass starting the weekend of Oct. 20-21 through Nov. 10-11. The proceeds will benefit area charities. Your order will be shipped direct and include a greeting card, wreath hanger, and gift packaging. FedEx will deliver between November 19th and December 8th. For information contact Quin Hostetler 217-801-7677.
ROSARY MAKERS ARE LOOKING TO EXPAND THEIR MINISTRY
If you have an interest in making rosaries, we can teach you. We meet in Room 111 the last Thursday of every month from 6:00-7:00pm. No need to call, you just stop by and see if this is for you. We have everything you’ll need.
If you have rosaries or parts of rosaries that you no longer use, please contact us. We can put them to good use and make new ones.
If you know of someone who needs a Rosary just contact us. We can give them to you for free!
Pam Geoghegan 865-657-0949
ADVENT BY CANDLELIGHT- Save the Date
Sunday, December 2, 2018
It’s never too early to mark your calendar for this important event. St. Thomas Women’s Guild will hold its annual Advent by Candlelight for the women of our congregation and their women guests on Sunday, 12:30 pm, December 2nd. There is no charge for this event. This is a wonderful afternoon of Word, music, and fellowship to help you prepare your hearts for the Advent Season before the holidays get into full swing!
CATHOLICISM INQUIRY SESSIONS
Do you have a family member or friend who is interested in becoming Catholic? The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a ministry for those who are not baptized or who have been baptized in another faith tradition and wish to learn more about and possibly enter the Catholic Church. Our Inquiry sessions are held every Sunday morning (10:15am-11:15am) or Monday evening (6:30pm-8pm) in Room 118 downstairs in the Parish Family Life Center. You may attend either session as they will both contain the same information. For more information, call Deacon John Krepps, 469-0604, email@example.com.
Welcome to our Community
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.
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. 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!
Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary
St. Louis de Montfort proposed this focused method of drawing closer to Jesus through Mary. It’s a 33 day self-directed process of prayerful preparation followed by consecration. Preparation starts 11/5/18 for consecration on 12/8/18 – Feast of the Immaculate Conception. Those interested should purchase books in Church office.
Thursdays starting 11/8/18; Session 1 of 6 / 9:30 – 11:00 am; Deacon Jose Rivera Room
Walk through the Liturgy with Bishop Robert Barron and be transformed through insights on this most privileged and intimate encounter with our Lord Jesus Christ. Facilitator: Deacon David Lucheon
Second Tuesday Lunch Presentations
Becoming a People After God’s Own Heart / This Month: How well do YOU know God?
Tuesdays 11:30 – 1:00 pm; Deacon Jose Rivera Room
Meeting on: 11/13/18 & 12/11/18 / Facilitator: Deacon Dave Pecot
Please join Fr. Ray Powell on Tuesday, November 13th
When he speaks on his conversion and call to the priesthood, 6:30 – 8:00 PM in the STA Parish Family Life Center.
Adult Faith Formation Facilitators Wanted: Training Provided!
As we seek to expand our Adult Faith Formation to more days and times as well as to additional topics in 2019, we are looking for facilitators. If you have facilitated in the past, we’d welcome you back! If not, we can provide training. Most programs have DVDs or online content and workbooks so the facilitators just need to be willing to help with discussion. Being a facilitator is enriching as we help others learn about their faith while gaining a lot ourselves! Please contact Jill St. Yves at firstname.lastname@example.org or Warren Hunt at email@example.com.
Apologetics/Defending the Faith – Become more comfortable in discussing your Faith with others
Bible Study - Unpack Bible scripture to explore the mysteries of the Word and increase your understanding and Faith
Mariology – Learn about the Blessed Virgin and her place in Salvation history
Morality & Contemporary Issues - Fundamentals on Catholic teaching and practice for a Christ-like life
Parish Mission – A special three day event designed to enliven and renew your faith
Personal Spiritual Growth - Grow your faith with books and DVD programs that will inspire you about your Faith
The Sacraments – Augment your understanding of the Sacraments, especially as they relate to the Sacrifice of the Mass and the Holy Bible
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
Sunday, December 2, 2018
12:30 – 2:00 pm St. Thomas PFLC
Theme: The Nativity
Please join us for a special afternoon for women to gather together. A time sparked with thoughtful reflection, soothing music, sweet desserts and quiet conversation among friends old & new. A gathering in a room filled with lovely set tables, glowing with myriads of candles. A spiritual & sensory experience. Ladies of our parish are invited to host or co-host a table. You’ll enjoy favorites: small sandwiches, desserts and/or snacks, at an inviting table of eight. We are looking for hostesses and co-hostesses to make our event joyful. Table hostesses please contact Bette Purvis:
firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 865. 458. 8070.
There is no cost for this event, but reservations are recommended.
There will be a display of Nativity Sets, share yours.
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.
COME EXPLORE CATHOLICISM UPDATE
No Inquiry Sessions will be held from Monday, March 26 through Monday, April 23.
NEW PROGRAM: All those interested are welcome to join us for a 5 session Bible Study on the Gospel of John beginning on Sunday, April 29, at 10:15am, in Room 118 of the PFLC. We will meet twice a month on the following dates: April 29, May 13 & 27, and June 10 & 24. Please bring a Bible! For more information, call Deacon John Krepps, 469-0604, or email@example.com
There will be no Inquiry sessions during July.
Our regular Catholic Inquiry sessions will begin again on August 5 & 6.
If you would like to donate flowers for the altar, please contact the parish office at 865-986-9885.
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.