The Year of Celebration Continues
March 19-22, 2019 – Lenten Adoration
March 20-22, 2019- Lenten Mission featuring The Vigil Project
April 28, 2019 – Easter Eggstravaganza
April 27 – May 4, 2019 – 150 Hours of Adoration
May 4, 2019- Jubilee Gala at Turf Valley Resort
Download the YEAR OF CELEBRATION calendar.
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On April 15th this year, we will begin a Year of Jubilee to mark 150 years of Catholic faith in Sykesville/Eldersburg. The focus of the year is “Our Journey in Christ: Remember, Celebrate, Dream.” This title affirms that faith draws us into the mystery of God. Following Jesus, individually and collectively, is a journey—a pilgrimage of discipleship. There are great things to remember about the journey so far; there are things to celebrate in the now, and there are dreams to be shared and concretized.
Remember: I see three aspects to our remembering: remembering the lives of the individual women and men of faith, the history of the local Church, and the evolution over time of how the Church understands itself. Initially, Catholics here met in private homes. One of the wealthier families, the Owings family, donated land for a church in 1865. The faith of individuals, how it was expressed, how it was prayed, and how it motivated them is what we thank God for. Many of those who have gone before us here were holy people, and some are now saints!
Remembering parish history is secondly about the infrastructure of our community. The cornerstone of the current Sykesville church was laid in 1867, and the parish was constituted in 1868. In 1965, a second church in Eldersburg was added. The Society of Mary, the Marianists, assumed pastoral leadership in 1981. The current Eldersburg church was dedicated in 1998. These facts point to growth, confidence, and the role religion played in the local community.
Remembering the impact the Second Vatican Council had on how we see the history of Church helps our 150th Jubilee. The Council opened in 1962, and over the next three years, it changed how we ‘do’ church. It taught that all people, not just nuns, priests and brothers, are called to holiness. The Mass can be celebrated in the local language, and with less a sense of ‘hearing’ Mass and more of a sense of participating in it. The Church is hierarchical and also, the Council taught, to be seen as the people of God. The result of these changes was expressed in the availability of Eucharistic Adoration, the development of lay liturgical ministries, and the establishment of a Parish Pastoral Council. It is these evolutions in our thinking that we remember and seek to learn from.
Celebrate: In the “now,” we celebrate the ministries and the volunteering that occurs at St. Joseph. People moved by faith teach, share faith with others, care for people, visit the sick, donate to charities, make casseroles, evangelize in the street, and offer time for service at liturgy. And an important aspect of what we celebrate now is the generosity of our members. This generosity enables us to have a large competent staff who are able to deepen our initiatives. Such fruits of the past, and their current expression, must be celebrated and applauded. Thank you to everyone who serves and contributes to St. Joseph. We are doing great things, and we can bring these things further. . . . and so we…
Dream: In the 150th Jubilee year, we hope to deepen our dream for the future of our faith community. The Pastoral Plan of 2017 is the foundation of such dreams. We hope to, not only welcome many people in the future, but help them encounter Christ. We plan to, not only accompany all so that they grow in faith, but we also dream of sending them on mission to spread the joy of the gospel and to serve those in need or in search of justice. One aspect of the dream for this 150th year could be, if we decide to do so, to consolidate the gifts we have and strengthen them for the future. To this end, if I get the help of a significant core group of people, I will run a Capital Campaign. Monies raised would remember our past by making the historic Sykesville church more usable (e.g., by installing air conditioning); celebrate our faith by giving our Liberty Road church a touch-up; and by making our dream for the future concrete by raising significant funds for Youth Ministry activities.
Rev. Neville O’Donohue, SM, Pastor
Take a moment to remember the events of the 150th Jubilee Celebration:
May 5, 2018 – Spring Craft Fair
June 1, 2018– Launch of WSJF 92.7 FM
June 17, 2018- Father’s Day Festival in Downtown Sykesville
August 11, 2018- Chicken BBQ Dinner
September 17 – 19, 2018- An Evangelistic Mission with Father Cedric Pisegna
October 8, 2018 – Inaugural Saint Joseph Cup Charity Golf Tournament
October 20-21, 2018 – SJCC Homecoming Weekend including a Ministry Fair, PumpkinFest, the 150th Jubilee Ice Cream Social, the Jubilee Fall Feast, and Sunday Brunch
November 3, 2018 – Festi-Fall Craft Show
November 10, 2018 – Commemoration of the Dead
November 2018 – Capital Campaign
NEW DATE*** December 1, 2018 – Breakfast with Saint Nicholas
December 14, 2018- Festival of Lessons & Carols
January 25, 2019- Christian Unity Concert
February 9, 2019- Valentine’s Day Flowers for Nursing Homes
February 13, 2019- An Evening with Sister Helena Burns- “God’s Vision of Love”