Pastor's Letter for the June 30, 2019 bulletin
Pastor’s Letter for the June 30, 2019 bulletin
For the past two years we have been blessed to have a parochial vicar, Fr. Jonas, assigned here to Christ Our Light Parish. He begins his new assignment this week, July 1st, as the new pastor of two parishes in Carroll County. I believe we have benefited from Fr. Jonas’ priestly ministry in our parish in two key ways: he offered a very sincere witness by “being himself” and he pointed very genuinely to the broader Catholic Church to which we are connected. So, may the Lord continue to bless him in his new chapter of priestly ministry and may those ways we have benefited continue to bear fruit.
On a different focus, one of the several ministry outreach groups that have developed in our parish recently is the addiction recovery support group called The Calix Society. Several parishioners had spoken with me a couple of years ago about some ways we as a parish could support people facing addiction. Just as we connected our social needs outreach group with the international organization of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul to bolster the endurance of our local group, we investigated some models of addiction recovery groups to see if there is a broader organization from which our local group could gain resources and stability. We found the organization called the Calix Society. We saw that they have local groups in Columbus, Cleveland and Pittsburgh. After visiting the group in Columbus we felt that we could employ the Calix Society approach here in Cambridge. It seemed that we could both fill a place in the overall map and relate to its approach.
What is unique about the Calix Society approach is two-fold: it is meant to be support both for those who are in addiction recovery and for their family members who are affected by their struggles. The Calix Society approach also concretely draws upon our Catholic faith for guiding the group’s activities. You could say it is like a combination of the Alcoholics Anonymous and the Al-Anon approaches.
The word “Calix” is the Latin word for “Chalice.” This means that we seek to replace desires for addictive substances, behaviors and attitudes with the desire for Jesus’ presence and graces, especially those graces that flow from his cross. The meetings usually have drawn upon a book, video or audio series to facilitate discussion and to help with the renewal and strengthening of the character and faith of each group member. Our local group started by meeting monthly and has become stable enough to meet weekly. For this summer the meetings have been shifted to the Second Wednesday of each month. For additional meeting information please feel free to contact me by phone or in person.
May the Lord continue to help us to walk together ever more joyfully, always ready for the gift of eternal life!