Jesus brings life to Our Lady of Victory Church when He says “I am the vine, you are the branches.” Guided by the Holy Spirit in the Roman Catholic tradition, we are called to minister to the spiritual formation as well as the emotional, physical and social needs of our members and the community at large. We imitate Mary whose faith led her to accept God’s mission so that we may live out our mission. As Mary serves as a model of hope for us, we as people of hope remain as life-giving branches on the vine.
Stay Connected to OLV
Our Food Pantry is STILL open Saturdays from 9-10am. We serve people in our community with non-perishable food and goods. Our pantry is completely run by volunteers and it only exists because of YOUR donations. Thank you so much for helping us! This week we are in need of:
Canned Beef Stew
Canned Corned Beef
Cereal (No Corn Flakes)
Fruit (Canned or Dried)
Instant Mashed Potatoes
Pasta Sauce (No Pasta)
Spices (oregano, basil, cumin, pepper, rosemary, thyme, cinnamon, etc.)
You may drop your donations at the Parish Office
Again, thank you for your generosity! God Bless!
What if I cannot go to confession right now because of the pandemic?
Pope Francis addressed this issue in his remarks on March 20, 2020 “But many people today would tell me, ‘Father, where can I find a priest, a confessor, because I can’t leave the house? And I want to make peace with the Lord, I want him to embrace me, I want the Father’s embrace.’”
The pope said his response would be, “Do what the Catechism (of the Catholic Church) says. It is very clear: If you cannot find a priest to confess to, speak directly with God, your father, and tell him the truth. Say, ‘Lord, I did this, this, this. Forgive me,’ and ask for pardon with all your heart.”
Make an act of contrition, the pope said, and promise God, “‘I will go to confession afterward, but forgive me now.’ And immediately you will return to a state of grace with God.”
The Catechism of the Catholic Church, N. 1452, says: “When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all else, contrition is called ‘perfect’ – contrition of charity. Such contrition remits venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal sins if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramental confession as soon as possible.”
“As the catechism teaches,” Pope Francis said, “you can draw near to God’s forgiveness without having a priest at hand. Think about it. This is the moment.”
The Apostolic Penitentiary also addressed this issue in his March 20, 2020 note on sacramental confession. It urged priests to remind their faithful that when they find themselves with the painful impossibility of receiving sacramental absolution they can make an act of contrition directly to God in prayer. If they are sincere and promise to go to confession as soon as possible they “obtain the forgiveness of sins, even mortal sins” according to the note.
The Special Plenary Indulgence offered by the Apostolic Penitentiary
What is the special indulgence recently granted by the Apostolic Penitentiary for those who are sick and their caregivers during the time of the COVID-19 outbreak?
On March 20, 2020 the Apostolic Penitentiary issued a document that noted In the decree on indulgences, the Apostolic Penitentiary noted the fear, uncertainty, physical spiritual suffering people around the world are experiencing because of the pandemic.
The decree said, “This Apostolic Penitentiary, with the authority of the Supreme Pontiff, trusting in the worlds of Christ the Lord and looking with a spirit of faith at the epidemic underway, which should be lived in a tone of personal conversion, grants the gift of indulgences” to a variety of people in a variety of circumstances
An indulgence is a remission of the temporal punishment a person is due for sins that have been forgiven.
Praying for the dying who cannot receive the sacrament of anointing, the decree said the church entrusted them to God’s mercy and drew on the merits of the communion of saints to grant a plenary indulgence to Catholics on the verge of death, as long as they “habitually recited prayers during their lifetime.”
If that is not possible, the decree said, they should at least recite the Creed and the Lord’s Prayer and invoke the help of Mary, “offering this trial in a spirit of faith in God and of charity toward others” and with a determination to go to confession, receive the Eucharist and pray for the intentions of the pope as soon as possible.
“Health care workers, family members and those who, following the example of the good Samaritan, assist those sick with the coronavirus, exposing themselves to the risk of contagion,” also receive the plenary indulgence, it said.
The decree also grants the indulgence to any Catholic who visits the Blessed Sacrament, “reads sacred Scripture for at least a half hour,” recites the rosary or the Divine Mercy Chaplet “to implore Almighty God for an end to the epidemic, the relief of those who are afflicted and eternal salvation for those the Lord has called to himself.”
The faithful can claim the indulgence for themselves or offer it on behalf of someone who has died.
What is a plenary indulgence?
An indulgence is not a quick ticket to heaven, as St. John Paul II once said; rather, it is an aid for the real conversion that leads to eternal happiness. Sins are forgiven through the sacrament of penance, but then there is a kind of punishment still due the sinner, the late pope explained during a general audience in 1999.
God’s fatherly love “does not exclude chastisement, even though this always should be understood in the context of a merciful justice which reestablishes the order violated,” he said. The pope had said the “temporal” punishment that remains after forgiveness is a grace aimed at wiping away the “residues of sin,” offering the reformed sinner the chance of complete healing through “a journey of purification” that can take place in this life or in purgatory.
Why is an indulgence granted by the Church?
In the words of St. John Paull II, the granting of an indulgence by the church is, “the expression of the church’s full confidence of being heard by the Father when, in view of Christ’s merits and, by his gift, those of Our Lady and the saints, she asks him to mitigate or cancel the painful aspect of punishment by fostering its medicinal aspect through other channels of grace.” He went on to say that an indulgence, then, is the result of the abundance of God’s mercy, which he offers to humanity through Jesus Christ and through the church.
Special indulgences have often been offered during times of great crisis from disease or other serious difficulties.
What should I do if I want to seek an indulgence?
By God’s grace, participation in a prayer or action that has an indulgence attached to it brings about the necessary restoration and reparation without the suffering that would normally accompany it. It frees a person from the punishment their sinfulness warrants as it is a remission of the temporal punishment a person is due for sins that have been forgiven.
But this gift cannot be received automatically or simply by fulfilling a few exterior requirements nor can it be approached with a superficial attitude, St. John Paul said. The reception of an indulgence depends on “our turning away from sin and our conversion to God,” he said. That is why there are several conditions for receiving an indulgence: — A spirit detached from sin. — Sacramental confession as soon as possible. — Eucharistic communion as soon as possible. — Prayer for the Holy Father’s intentions.
Here’s hoping all of you are staying well, staying home, and keeping appropriate social distances. With all that is going on and the constant adjustment in instructions, I wanted to touch base with another edition of my Business Manager’s Blog. To give you an update of what is happening around here and how we can stay in touch and connected during this trying time.
It’s hard to believe that liquor stores are considered essential but churches are not! I have a different opinion. I don’t recall people praying to Jack Daniels to stop the Great Baltimore Fire, or invoking the intercession of Johnny Walker to bring our troops home safely! Throughout history, mankind has turned to God, to ask for protection from any number of natural and man-made perils. In that tradition, we will continue to keep Our Lady of Victory Church open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday for private prayer. Please observe proper social distancing. Current bulletins are available on the tables, as well as online. There are rosaries and Stations of the Cross booklets available for your use. A reminder also that we have a wonderful outdoor Stations of the Cross garden just across the footbridge from the parking lot. This garden is open and accessible every day for your private prayer.
As I write this, we have been instructed by the Archbishop to close all parish offices following the latest instructions from Governor Hogan. We are having the staff work from home as much as possible and to maintain a skeleton crew to keep things flowing. We continue to check email, phone messages and receive and process regular snail mail. Feel free to contact us, leave messages, and email we will endeavor to answer all within 24 hours. Fr. Bill is available for the Sacrament of the Sick and anointing.
The parish will be connecting in various ways through the duration via Flocknote, My Parish App and on Facebook and YouTube. If you are not currently connected here is how:
Flocknote- Text olvictory to 84576 and follow the prompts
My Parish App- www.myparishapp.com and select OLV
YouTube- For now access via our Facebook page or click here.
Bulletin- Available online or in the Gathering Space.
As we strive to maintain as much normalcy as possible, we still need to pay our recurring utilities and maintenance bills and to pay the staff for as long as possible. To those of you that are using Online Giving, thank you. This is the easiest way to support your parish in times like these. Online Giving is easy to enroll just go to our website www.olvictory.org/olvc/stewardship-2/online-giving.
You can also drop off your Offertory envelopes, Lucky Numbers tickets and any other correspondence into the Poor Boxes in the church as you are visiting or via the new mail slot in the Rectory front door. To request Lucky Numbers tickets leave a voicemail or email Elizabeth at firstname.lastname@example.org and the tickets will be mailed to your home. As a side note, for those of you that make your contributions once a month either by cash or check please know that we rely on that income too. If at all possible please continue these contributions.
Thank you for your prayers as you all remain in ours. Follow the expert’s guidelines and we will all be here when this threat passes. As always, feel free to call or email 410-242-0131 x 234 email@example.com.
Just a reminder…
- All masses have been cancelled
- All Parish and School activities are cancelled
- RCIA is cancelled
- Religious Ed, First Eucharist, Confirmation classes all
- All Youth Ministry meetings are cancelled
- All Sport Activities (Basketball & Soccer) and youth based
activities (AHG & TL) are cancelled
- Soup & Bread & Stations of the Cross are cancelled
- Adoration is cancelled
- Confessions will still be held Tuesdays 4:30 – 6pm (Except
March 24th) and Saturdays from 3 – 3:50pm
- Food Pantry is still open Saturdays from 9-10am
- Parish Office is closed to the public
These measures are all based on recommendations published by the CDC, MD Dept of Health, Archdiocese of Baltimore, and other health agencies.
We will continue to pray for you, your family & friends during this time. We join Pope Francis in asking for the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary for a halt to the spread of the virus http://www.olvictory.org/olvc/stewardship-2/online-giving/
Youth Ministry Gatherings: Sundays, 7:00 – 8:30 pm, in the Campus Ministry Center
All Activities Have Been Cancelled Until Further Notice
If you are interested in being part of our Contemporary Music Ministry or one of our choirs please contact Mary Kurek at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Everyone loves the beauty and innocence of a baby. As an expression of that love, OLV announces a spiritual adoption program for young and old alike.
Over the next nine months, which began the weekend of September 7-8, the members of our parish family will have the opportunity to spiritually adopt a child who is newly conceived .
You may “adopt” a child individually or as a family. You will be asked to name the child for whom you will be praying, thereby giving the baby the humanity he or she deserves. As we all know the power of prayer is great.
You will receive monthly reports through a parish display describing your baby’s development. Each month we will print the prayer for the unborn in the bulletin. Please keep this prayer and commit to praying it every day. Our babies will be born in June.
There are millions of unborn babies desperately in need of your prayers. Please spiritually adopt and share the love that God has given you. This is a beautiful way to teach young children to respect all life.