February 21, 2021
Dear Parishioners of the Oak Lawn-Bridgeview-Burbank Grouping of St. Louis de Montfort, St. Fabian, St. Albert the Great and St. Gerald:
St. Louis de Montfort
As we have embarked on a new chapter in our Catholic community, we have been informed of the decisions for our grouping back on Friday, January 22, 2021. For St. Louis de Montfort, there is great sadness knowing that our wonderful parish and its spiritual history and ministries, beginning in 1965, is coming to an end. Effective July 1, 2021, St. Louis de Montfort will close and its parishioners are invited to join any of the neighboring parishes. As we live and apply the Paschal Mystery each day of our lives, we, at St. Louis de Montfort, feel like it is Good Friday. Yet, we know that as tragic as Good Friday is for Jesus; it does not end on Good Friday. Unfortunately, there is continued sadness of the entombment of our Lord and being in the grave on Holy Saturday, but on the third day; the magnificent resurrection of Jesus and triumph and joy beyond our belief. It will take a long time to heal and grow from our Good Friday and Holy Saturday. Many parishioners have stated that it feels like a death of a parent, family member or very close friend. In this time of sadness, we would like to offer a prayerful hope from the prayers of our Catholic Funeral Mass. We, at St. Louis de Montfort, can relate to the following funeral prayer as it states, “Trusting in God, we have prayed together for our loved one and now we come to the last farewell. There is great sadness in parting, but we take comfort in the hope that one day we shall see our loved one again and enjoy his/her friendship. Although this congregation will disperse in sorrow, the mercy of God will gather us together again in the joy of His Kingdom. Therefore let us console one another in the faith of Jesus Christ.”
It is good to know that we are consoled by our all loving God. It is good to know that we have each other to console with one another. It is good to know that we are consoled and supported by our Catholic families of St. Fabian, St. Albert the Great and St. Gerald’s as we are in the grieving process. The legacy of St. Louis de Montfort will never be forgotten, but will grow as long as we share our lives and stories with the welcoming parishioners in our grouping and beyond. We give thanks to God for the numerous blessings He bestowed upon St. Louis de Montfort in this life: they are signs to us of God’s goodness and of our fellowship with the saints in Christ. We know that the Lord is with us, He continues to remain with us during this process, and we will be strengthened by Him by keeping each other in prayer. Let us continue to journey together with the wonderful parishioners of St. Fabian, St. Albert the Great and St. Gerald, and continue being prayerful and spiritual as we build together, with God’s help, a strong Catholic community into the future as disciples who inspire witness to the love of the Gospel.
My Friends, we are all followers of Christ. When we lose someone or something it is ok for us to be sad. It is natural. Even our Master, Jesus Christ, cried when his friend Lazarus died. So it is ok for us to grieve, it is ok to cry, but we need to keep in mind that in Christ there is hope, and that is why we cannot despair. Catholics don’t despair. Catholics search for strength.
So where do we find that strength when we need it? We can find it in Christ and his sacraments, especially in the sacrament of Eucharist. We are Eucharistic people, and we cannot abandon Christ present in the sacrament of Holy Mass. We need to receive Jesus at least at the holy days of obligation in order to be worthy to receive our reward in heaven. For whoever eats Christ’s Body and drinks His blood will be saved. Our faithfulness to Jesus and his sacraments is crutial at the time of distress.
My Friends, when we suffer, we also need each other. That is why the parishioners and staff members of St. Gerald, (St. Albert the Great and St. Fabian) ask the Family of St. Louis de Montfort to keep in mind that we are here for you. Not only we pray for you, but also we would be blessed if you would consider joining one of our parishes. You are important to us and we promise to do our best for you to feel at home with us. And please feel free to contact us if we could help you with anything.
Often times we are asked to make an important change in life. Now you are being asked to begin looking for a new parish, which isn’t an easy task.
Our St. Fabian Parish Family most cordially invites you and your family to join us. We are a friendly and welcoming parish that extends to you and your family our warmest welcome! You will feel at home with us as we pray and worship Almighty God together.
We are always open to new ideas, and we welcome any ideas that you might have to help enrich the life of St. Fabian. If you have been involved in any ministries at St. Louis de Montfort, we welcome your participation in those ministries here.
Please join us at Mass in our beautiful Church. Masses in English are celebrated on Saturday at 4:00 p.m., and on Sunday at 8:30 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. Masses in Polish are celebrated on Sunday at 7:00 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m.
If you have any questions, please feel free to call our Parish Office at (708) 599-1110. We look forward to meeting you!
St. Albert the Great
St. Albert the Great Parish is an exceptional religious community. It is open to diverse traditions, cultures and languages. This diversity makes our parish dynamic and the biggest parish in the Archdiocese of Chicago. As a one large community we try to “know all Jesus’s sheep” and promptly answer to their spiritual needs. Therefore, we kindly invite followers of Jesus from St. Louis de Montfort to come and pray with us. Please remember that you are a “Gift that is given and assigned. You are a great blessing always and everywhere”.
Jesus, I Trust in You!
Sincerely Yours in Christ,
Fr. Stan Stuglik, Pastor – St. Louis de Montfort
Fr. Robert Pajor, Pastor – St. Gerald
Fr. Grzegorz Warmuz, Pastor – St. Fabian
Fr. Mariusz Nawalaniec, Pastor – St. Albert the Great