Simbang Gabi is a series of special liturgies leading up to Christmas. The celebration of the nine-day novena of Masses is a longest-running and popular Catholic Filipino religious tradition. At the Masses, the faithful especially focus on the Blessed Virgin Mary in the preparation for the birth of the Savior Jesus Christ.
In an effort to inspire and challenge Catholic families across Alaska, the Fairbanks Diocese is hosting a Catholic family conference later this winter. The Feb. 9-11 conference is titled, “Families Fully Alive.” The gathering will take place at Monroe Catholic High School with the aim to “engage family members of all ages to help foster Christ-centered families through a weekend-long vacation Bible school for children and nationally renowned speakers for teens and adults.”
Anchorage Archbishop Paul Etienne has hired John Harmon as the new chancellor for the Archdiocese of Anchorage. Harmon brings extensive business, legal and pastoral experience as a former teacher, college president, Fortune 100 corporate attorney and a Catholic high school principal.
St. Nicholas of Myra Byzantine Catholic Church is celebrating its 60th anniversary on Dec. 10 and welcomes its Latin rite brothers and sisters from across the Anchorage Archdiocese to join in.
Life is short — the years and decades, peopled with children and loved ones, recede into history before we have time to properly savor them . We know this — we feel the occasional pangs of life slipping through our fingers. But just for good measure, the church reminds us again, even as we prepare to celebrate Christmas.
Christmas is fast approaching — a time to be reminded of all we have and to prepare ourselves for a new birth. It is a time to celebrate with our family and community — to share time, joy, gifts and love. The coming together in joy reminds me of an event held at Brother Francis Shelter in October.
The adventurous and long-serving Sister Marie Ann Brent, of the Sisters of the Holy Family, died last month at the age of 83. According to her religious order, Sister Brent died suddenly on Nov. 22, while living at the order’s motherhouse in Fremont, California. A funeral service was held there on Nov. 29. A Memorial Mass for Sister Brent will be celebrated at St. Francis Xavier Church in Valdez on Dec. 6 at 6 p.m.
Saint Catherine of Siena is the renowned 14th-century woman who played an eminent role in the history of the Catholic Church and in the life of Anchorage Archbishop Paul Etienne. On Dec. 12 Archbishop Etienne will share his own experience of how Saint Catherine influences his life and why she is still relevant and inspiring for people of the 21st century.
CatholicAnchor.org Editor’s note: This interview by Nikolay Syrov with Father Michael Shields was originally published in Moscow. It is reprinted here with permission. When and how did you come up with the idea of setting up a mission to Magadan? Father Shields: I didn’t. God did. I came to Magadan first in 1989 and fell…
Anchorage Archbishop Paul Etienne was installed as archbishop of Anchorage just eight months ago. As part of an ongoing effort to visit parishioners across his 138,000-square-mile archdiocese, he boarded several planes, including a small two-seater, and flew to the hinterlands of North America.