My Dear Friends,

St. Mary School and St. Mary Faith Formation School are out for the summer now, so the campus is in “summer mode” once again. Remember that Friday morning Masses during the summer months are at 7:30 a.m.

Even though St. Mary School and St. Mary Faith Formation School are out for the summer, our other two St. Mary schools—St. Mary Adult School and CEPI de Santa María, will continue to be open. CEPI de Santa María, our newest school, is now the largest of our four schools with over 400 students. Most of the students of CEPI de Santa María are studying to be certified as carpenters, plumbers, electricians, welders, heating & air conditioning techs, and computer techs. Some, however, are focusing exclusively on academics.

If you follow the “Celebrations” part of our parish bulletin, you most likely have noticed that the majority of our Baptisms are American children of immigrant parents. Quite frequently, immigrant families are much poorer than families that have been in our country for generations. Thus, they are unlikely to be able to afford the tuition for our St. Mary Catholic School. That is indeed unfortunate, for a Catholic school education has been shown to produce great leaders. In fact, in this country, a third of all doctorates go to Catholics even though we are only a fourth of the population.

Therefore, I am forming a special Task Force to see how we can, as a parish community, increase the chances of our American children of immigrant parishioners to be a part of St. Mary Catholic School. If you have a special interest in this most challenging and important endeavor, please see me. And whatever you do, please pray for the success of this Task Force.

All kids, from Rising Kindergarteners through 5 Graders are invited to “join the stampede” for our SonWest Roundup Vacation Bible School that will be held from Monday-Friday, June 24-28th. The cost is $10 per child.

If you are looking for an extremely rewarding ministry experience, please consider the Camillus Ministry. Camillus Ministers, who are named after St. Camillus who was a nurse and priest, bring Holy Communion to the sick. We have two branches of Camillus Ministers at St. Mary Parish. The first branch brings Communion to the 770-bed New Hanover Regional Medical Center and to the 12-bed Lower Cape Fear Hospice. The second branch brings Holy Communion to 15 nursing centers and private homes. If you are interested or would like more information, please contact the parish office.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Bob