“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone. You have brought them abundant joy and great rejoicing…”
– Isaiah 9:1-2
From the beginning of Creation, God foresaw this momentous act of love in which the Son of God would enter into our world fully, becoming one of us. As we prepare for the coming of Christ in his birth, let us use all of our senses to “see” in a new way, the presence of God. Just as the prophet Isaiah boldly proclaimed the coming of Jesus, we invite you to break open the Word once more in your home, reading Scripture for accounts of the Nativity as found in the first chapters of the Gospels of Matthew, Luke, or the more poetic John. Or while on the go, consider listening to The Truth and Life Dramatized Audio Bible available free on FORMED (olphparish.formed.org).
May the Lord open our eyes to his presence in our midst, our ears to his Word, our touch to his warmth often experienced in our family and friends, our smell of the evergreen and Christmas cookies or our taste of wonderful meals remain as signs of God’s goodness and care for us. Moreover, may the Lord strengthen our sense of Wonder, recapturing the joy of a child on Christmas morning, as we reflect on the gift of Jesus.
Each week of Advent, the parish team will share, on a weekly basis, their own personal reflections.
To help keep our focus on this time to grow with wonder for Christmas we offer you this year’s OLPH Advent & Christmas Prayer Calendar (page 3 of the Advent Packet). The goal of this prayer calendar is to approach each week “with our senses on some of the rituals of the Advent season” like Christmas movies, Art, Music, yet with our heart guided to see God in our lives and grow with that excitement for what is Christmas morning. To get you started with each new week of Advent, the parish team will share, their own personal reflections of Christ found in and through music, art, movies and more. Check back each Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday for the addition of a new Advent Reflection!
Receive God’s Mercy in the Sacrament of Reconciliation
Don’t miss these opportunities to unburden your heart from sin and be reconciled with God:
Regular Weekly Confessions
- Wednesdays 6:00-7:00pm
- Fridays 4:30-6:00pm
- Saturdays 3:00-4:15pm
Howard County Regional Advent Reconciliation Services
- Monday, December 9, 2019 at 7:00pm at the Church of the Resurrection, Ellicott City
- Tuesday, December 10, 2019 at 7:00pm at St. John’s, Columbia
Haven’t been to confession for a while? Just let the priest know it’s been a little while and he’ll be ready to help. Don’t worry, click the button for a helpful guide to prepare yourself for confession.
Join us for daily Mass (Monday-Wednesday, Friday-Saturday at 8:15am and Thursdays at 9:30am) to enter more deeply into the season by reflecting on the Scripture readings that foretell the coming of Christ, and then receive Him in the Eucharist. This is a great way to build-in time with the Lord during the busyness of December!
Spend Quiet Time with Jesus during Eucharistic Adoration
Every Wednesday from 9:00am until Saturday at 8:00am we have the opportunity to pray before Jesus truly present in the Blessed Sacrament during Eucharistic Adoration. With faith in His words “This is my Body”, we come before Him and spend time in His presence. In the midst of the holiday rush, stop into the Chapel, slow down, and spend some quiet time with Jesus and speak with Him in prayer or simply enjoy sitting in His presence.
Advent Offerings & Events
St. Vincent de Paul Christmas Giving Tree Program
You are invited to select from 850 gift tags as we do our small part to bring joy in the form of a gift to children at St. Wenceslaus, St. Veronica’s, the Franciscan Center, Sarah’s Hope and Grassroot shelters. Just take a gift tag or two from the trees in the Narthex on Nov. 30/Dec. 1, follow the instructions found on the tag and return your gifts (along with the tag and yarn you took from the tree) to the Narthex no later than the 11:00am Mass on Sunday, Dec. 15!
SALT-Boxes for Baltimore
Join us in a Christmas Project sponsored by OLPH-SALT to provide care packages to those we serve in Baltimore City. Would you please help? Please visit our website at www.olphparish.org/boxes to sign up to make a box.
BEHOLD: The Joyful Mysteries
A Women’s Evening of Prayer through Sacred Art
December 2, 9, 16 at 7:00pm
Visio Divina is a form of prayer where one uses Scripture and sacred art to encounter God. Behold is an offering exclusively for women to come to a deeper understanding of their value through contemplating the feminine heart of Mary and their God given gifts as women through Visio Divina. Join us for three 90-minute sessions in the Church! Can’t make all three, no worries, join us for the sessions possible for you!
Parish Advent Mission
Evenings with Fr. Joseph Mary
December 3, 4, 5 at 7:00pm
OLPH is excited to host Fr. Joseph Mary from the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal as he leads our parish in three nights of time together in Mission. Each night will include a talk in the Church (Inner Healing, Forgiveness, Reconciliation and the Eucharist) and time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. Make a commitment to your spiritual health and set time aside for this special offering.
Did you miss the Mission?
Check out all the video from all three evenings!
Monthly Eucharistic Festival of Praise
Friday, December 6 at 7:30pm
We experience God’s joy, peace, love, healing, and mercy when we lift our hearts to Him in praise. Join us for our Advent Festival of Praise, an evening of prayer, praise, and worship before Jesus in the gift of the Eucharist.
OLPH Annual Breakfast with Santa
Sunday, December 8 at 8:00am-12:00pm
(Photos with Santa available until 1pm)
Join us for a delicious breakfast buffet, Santa’s Workshop Maker Crafts, games, raffles, and photos with Santa (photos available until 1pm). Tickets are $11 for adults, $6 for children ages 3-12, $8 for seniors, and free for children under 3. Visit olphschool.org for more info!
Blue Christmas Service
Hope for the Holidays
December 8 at 7:00pm in the Church
The season may bring the first Christmas without a loved one, or a painful reminder of the those we have been without for some time. Join us in the Church for a service of prayer and reflection where we will acknowledge that God’s presence is with us in our pain. Fellowship time to follow.
Celtic Christmas Music Tour
Saturday, December 14 at 7:00pm
Ben-David Warner, OLPH Music director, brings his full-band, acoustic, Celtic Christmas show to the parish! Featuring a blend of Celtic, Classical, and Christmas Carol styles of music. Grab a sneak peek: www.bendavidwarner.com/Christmas-tour.
Women’s Eucharistic Adoration
Tuesday, December 17 at 7:00pm
This evening will offer a time of prayer for women before the Blessed Sacrament in the Good Shepherd Chapel. Fr. Mike will expose the Blessed Sacrament for our time of prayer and offer benediction and a fellow sister will lead us in reflection. As we prepare for Christmas, consider giving yourself this gift of time with the Lord in his very presence.
Christmas Parish Family Dinner Night!
Friday, January 3 from 5:00-8:00pm
Mark your calendars for our upcoming OLPH Family Dinner Night as we continue our Christmas celebrations. Our chefs have a wonderful meal planned so take time to relax with family and friends and join us for a great night. Don’t let Christmas end too early – join us for our Christmas Parish Family Dinner Night!
Christmas And New Year’s Mass Schedule
Christmas Eve Masses
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
4:00pm in the Church and 4:00pm in the Parish Center
6:00pm – Church
8:00pm – Church
12:00am Midnight – Church
❧A musical prelude will take place before each of the Christmas Eve Masses
❧ The Children’s Christmas Program will begin at 3:30pm in the Church
Christmas Day Masses
Wednesday, December 25, 2019
9:00 am – Church Please Note: this is the only Christmas Day Mass!
New Year’s Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
New Year’s Eve – Tuesday, December 31, 2019
5:00pm – Vigil Mass for the Solemnity
8:00pm to Midnight – Eucharistic Adoration
12:00am – Candlelit Midnight Mass
New Year’s Day – Wednesday, January 1, 2020
9:00 am – Mass for the Solemnity