The Giving Tree is in our Church beginning this weekend!
Our parish is collecting gifts to be distributed to individuals of St. Simon Stock Church in Bronx, NY, for AIDS patients at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, for the women and children of Siena House in Bronx, NY, for the Missionary Franciscan Sisters in Tenafly and the Sisters of St. Joseph residing in Teaneck. Please bring your gift tags and the purchased gifts attached together as indicated on the tag. Thank you for helping to make someone’s Christmas special!
Deadline to bring gifts to the Church: All gifts must be returned to the Church no later than the weekend of December 9th and 10th. THIS WEEKEND!
Please be sure gifts are wrapped with the ORIGINAL GIFT TAG affixed to the OUTSIDE of the package.
In honor of St. Thérèse of Lisieux’s “Christmas conversion” we’ve added a spiritual component to our Giving Tree.
In addition to taking a tag and buying gifts this year we ask that you take a moment to lift up in prayer the children
whom you are purchasing gifts for using the following prayer:
St. Therese, beloved friend, please accept these petitions, hopes, needs, and dreams on behalf of [child name(s)].
Please present them to our Loving Father so that God may do what is best for them.
We ask you, dear friend, with the bold confidence and loving surrender you taught us.
We make this prayerful petition in the name of Jesus and through the power of His Spirit.
It’s a wonderful thing for families to do together this season. We invite you not only to share your prayer petitions in our comments below but also your reflections pictures, comments etc on the prophetic work for children you do in Therese’s name. Share it on social media using #ChristmasConversion or #PropheticContemplation
OLMC’s Giving Tree Benefits:
Children, teens and young adults living with AIDS at Bronx Lebannon Hospital
Children at Arcadia Day Care in the Bronx
Religious Sisters living in Tenafly and Teaneck
Children and their mothers living in the Siena House shelter
Children of the families of our sister parish St. Simon Stock
christmas-conversion-web1Thérèse’s Christmas Conversion
Thérèse referred to it in her autobiography as her “Christmas conversion” but in many ways it was a simple, domestic scene out of late 19th Century France. It was Christmas 1886 and Therese was 14; an age when most children had outgrown the French custom at Christmas of leaving their shoes by the hearth so their parents could fill them with gifts. But her older sisters liked indulging her as the “baby” of the family so they continued the custom with Thérèse.
Therese and her sister Céline had returned from Midnight Mass and as they climbed the stairs to take off their hats, they heard their father, standing over the shoes in the parlor below, say “Thank goodness that’s the last time we shall have this kind of thing!” Thérèse froze, and her sister looked at her helplessly. Céline knew that Thérèse would be in tears over the comment.
But the tantrum never came. Instead, Thérèse tells us that something incredible happened. She swallowed her tears, walked slowly down the stairs, and exclaimed over the gifts as if she’d never heard a word her father said. Jesus had come into her heart and done what she could not do herself: make her more sensitive to her father’s feelings than her own. The following year she entered the convent.