All posts by Rob Boelke

Statement from the Florida Council of Catholic Bishops

To view the original document released by the FCCB, click here.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 24, 2022
CONTACT:
Michele Taylor
Associate Director for Communications
(850) 205-6817
mtaylor@flaccb.org

Statement on U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization

TALLAHASSEE – On June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a landmark ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, overturning Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. In response, the bishops of Florida issued the following statement:

“We are deeply heartened to see that the U.S. Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey in its landmark opinion, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. The most influential abortion case in decades, Dobbs is a decision by our nation’s highest court to allow states to protect women and their children from abortion through all stages of pregnancy.

“The legacy of Roe and Casey has been the imposition of an abortion regime that made our nation one of the most liberal of Western democratic countries on abortion. As a result, over 62 million children nationwide and 3,368,4751 children in Florida were denied the opportunity to live outside the womb since 1973. Mothers, fathers, and families have suffered under the shadow of Roe. Now, decision-making on abortion policy is once again in the hands of the American people and their elected officials. This is a momentous step towards establishing a more robust culture of life.

“The Dobbs case marks a new era for the work of the Church and all those who strive to protect children in the womb. We remain committed to ministries of service that accompany expectant mothers facing difficult or unintended pregnancies. We strive to continue to build a society that empowers women so that mothers are truly supported throughout pregnancy and beyond. A truly pro-life culture values women for their unique contributions and special gifts in all spheres of life, while supporting them in their roles as mothers. We wholeheartedly promote the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ initiative Walking with Moms in Need as well as the Florida Pregnancy Care Network to provide life-affirming care for women.

“We also remain passionate in the collective effort to change hearts and minds in Florida so that abortion is unthinkable, and to advocate for the legal protection of human life in the womb accompanied by profound care for mothers and their children. Roe’s reversal is the long-awaited righting of a grievous wrong, and we look ahead with grateful hope as we seek to bring the light of Christ and the Gospel of Life to our state of Florida.”

1) https://www.johnstonsarchive.net/…/usa/ab-usa-FL.html, accessed on May 20, 2022.

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The Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops is an agency of the Catholic Bishops of Florida. It speaks for the Church in matters of public policy and serves as liaison to the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. The archbishop and bishops of the seven (arch)dioceses in Florida constitute its board of directors.

Online Mass | The Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Thank you for participating in Sacred Heart’s Mass, whether in person or online. On this page you can find the readings for the Sunday celebration as well as the music for Mass.

Hymns for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time:

Opening Song: Here I am Lord G:844
Penitential Act: Glory to God: Mass of Joy & Peace (Alonso) G:249

Responsorial Psalm 16:

Preserve me, O God, preserve me, O God,
For in you I take refuge.

Gospel Acclamation: Salisbury Alleluia (Walker)

Speak, Lord, your servant is listening;
you have the words of everlasting life.

Preparation of the Gifts: Will you come and follow me G869
Eucharistic Acclamations: Mass of Creation G: 231, 234, 238
Lamb of God: Mass of Creation G:240
Communion Song: O Lord, I know you are near G:751
Dismissal: Sent forth by God’s blessing G: 855

Links to Resources for Mass: 

  • Readings for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday, June 26, 2022
  • Contemporary Music for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday, June 26, 2022

Online Mass | The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Thank you for participating in Sacred Heart’s Mass, whether in person or online. On this page you can find the readings for the Sunday celebration as well as the music for Mass.

  • Readings for the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Friday, June 24, 2022
  • Music for the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Friday, June 24, 2022
  • Vespers Prayer Service for the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Friday, June 24, 2022

Parishioners Show in Droves for Successful Donation Event for Tampa Hope, JCHC

Volunteers from Sacred Heart’s Outreach Committee, Friars, and Knights of Columbus managed to thwart the rain as our latest Giving from the Heart donation drive-thru event was held last Saturday, June 11, at the North Campus. The event was organized in conjunction with Catholic Charities DOSP and Faith Community Nursing, supporting both the Tampa Hope Homeless Center and the Judeo-Christian Health Clinic.

The Judeo Christian Health Clinic provides free, quality, timely and compassionate health care to medically indigent residents of the Tampa Bay area who have no other resources for their health care needs. The Clinic, which began in 1972, serves patients who do not qualify for government funded programs and have incomes that fall just above the federal poverty level. JCHC recorded nearly 30,000 visits in 2021.

Opened last year, Tampa Hope houses over 100 local homeless in semi-permanent shelters while providing food, clothing, transportation, education, employment and benefits assistance, substance abuse and mental health counseling, basic medical care, and case management services in an effort to help reestablish permanent housing. Sacred Heart is an original partner of the facility, which is located in East Tampa.

More than 40 vehicles drove through with many car-and-truck loads of needed items, including toiletries, blankets, clothes, cleaning, office, medical and kitchen supplies, as well as monetary donations. More than 500 individual items were collected to help stock these important community resources.

Our next Giving from the Heart event will be held in August, co-sponsored by Open Doors and Sacred Heart’s Young Professionals, benefitting Saint Vincent de Paul, and Dignity for Haiti.

View the gallery below for pictures from the event:

Christ Has No Body But Yours | Friar Reflections | Fr. Steve Kluge, OFM

Dear parishioners,

Saints of God, the Lord be with you!

Two weeks ago on the Solemnity of Pentecost, the Church had us focus on the Holy Spirit: the Divine Love who abides within and among us so as to encourage and empower us to “follow in the footprints of Christ.” With the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Church is given its mission to preach and be the presence of Christ in the world. In the Gospel according to John, the Church is born from the spear split side of the crucified Christ from which gushes forth water and blood (signifying the great sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist).

The Corpus Christi Procession
Arcadi Mas i Fondevila | 1887

Last week, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, the Church proclaims the Mystery of All Mysteries in which Christians profess and celebrate that God is in God’s very Self a relationship of Love. From this relationship we are created in and for Love, nourished and redeemed by Love enfleshed in Christ Jesus, and sustained and sanctified by Love through the Holy Spirit. As God is a Personal relationship of Creative, Self Sacrificing, and Abiding Love, we in our everyday lives are called to imitate this love in our own finite way.

Today we focus on the mystery that in the Holy Eucharist, the Risen Christ is truly and fully present under the appearance of bread and wine. Meditate on this. The Risen Christ is not only seated in glory at the right hand of the Father, but in all humility comes into our hands to be touched and tasted. Christ comes to us not only to nourish our souls but our bodies as well.

Each time we receive the Risen Christ in the Holy Eucharist, we are once again dipped in the waters of Christ’s baptism of solidarity. Our identity as disciples of Christ is strengthened and our mission to each other is renewed. As St. Augustine wrote, “Rejoice, O Christian! For by your baptism, you are more than a Christian, you are Christ Himself.” We receive Christ in the Eucharist so as to become more like Him. Seen in this light, the Holy Eucharist becomes food for our journey through life, not a reward for good behavior.

Today I am reminded of that great prayer of St. Theresa of Avila:

St. Theresa of Avila
Anonymous, 17th Century

“Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which He looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which He blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, YOU are His body. Christ has no body now on earth but yours.”

So today, as we leave our beautiful church and head back into our beautiful and broken world, let us remember that we take Christ with us. Our call is to make Christ visible in the world, and we do this best through simple acts of charity. And to all of us who are the Body of Christ, I give a resounding “Amen!”

Peace and all good,
Fr. Steve

Online Mass | The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

Thank you for participating in Sacred Heart’s Mass, whether in person or online. On this page you can find the readings for the Sunday celebration as well as the music for Mass.

  • Readings for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, Sunday, June 19, 2022
  • Music for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, Sunday, June 19, 2022
  • Contemporary Music for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, Sunday, June 19, 2022

The Mystery of the Trinity | Friar Reflections | Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity


Dear Parishioners,

This weekend we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. I think we can all agree the understanding of the Holy Trinity is one greatest of all mysteries of our faith: the One and Only God is a unity of Three Persons. In attempts to define the Trinity, we often hear it explained as a three-leaf clover, all being part of one stem. We’re also referred to the physical states water can take, as either liquid, ice, or steam, yet are all still water.

Perhaps you are familiar with a story from the life of St. Augustine on The Trinity:

It was around the year 415 A.D., and St. Augustine was walking along the beach on a bright, sunny day. He was frustrated, having taken a break from working on what’s become known as one of his greatest contributions to the Church, “On the Trinity.” The subject matter had left him bleary-eyed and in need of fresh air, so he went for a walk on the beach.

It was in this moment, as the frothy tide rushed out, that a little boy caught St. Augustine’s eye. He was a freckle-faced child who had a determined, furrowed brow. He was clearly up to something, running back-and-forth, back-and-forth, between the sea and a tiny hole in the ground.

The Vision of St. Augustine by Sandro Botticelli, 1488

“My son,” St. Augustine called over the crashing waves, “What are you doing there?” The boy held up the pink shell he was using to move water, “I’m trying to fit that great big ocean into this tiny hole,” he yelled, pointing assertively at the sand. St. Augustine smiled, charmed by the child’s innocence. He then followed the boy to kneel beside the hole, watching him spill out a few meager drops.

“My child,” the bishop of Hippo started, as he attempted to break the news gently, turning the boy’s shoulders to face the sea. He then spread his own arms wide, “You could never fit this great, magnificent ocean into that tiny hole!” The child didn’t flinch, but responded quickly: “And you could never possibly understand the Holy Trinity.” Then in a flash, the boy disappeared.

In our Franciscan tradition, the fact that God is Triune is not simply a dogma for the intellect. The Trinity should have meaning in all of our lives. Scripture and tradition establish key things. First, God is love. Second, as Trinity, God is in loving relationship with Godself. Finally, we are created in the image and likeness of a loving and relational God; this means we are most human when we are in loving relationship with God and one another.

On his window depiction in our church, St. Patrick holds a three-leaf clover, in reference to The Holy Trinity.

Although the hidden life of God remains a mystery inaccessible by reason alone, professing God as Trinity is not meant to distance us from him. Through the Son’s incarnation and the sending of the Holy Spirit, not only are we capable of understanding the eternal  relationship of intimate loving communion that is the Holy Trinity, we are able to share in it. This is why we were created, why every human heart cries out to be loved. The revelation of God as a relationship explains what it means to be human. Let us always pray inviting the Holy Spirit into our lives for the understanding of what it means to be in true relationship with God, each other, and all of God’s creation!

Peace and All Good,
Fr. Zack

The Gifts of the Holy Spirit as Sacred Heart | Friar Reflections | Pentecost Sunday


Dear Parishioners,

Pope Francis, in his homily at Mass on the Solemnity of Pentecost, May 24, 2015, said the following:

“The world needs men and women who are not closed in on themselves, but filled with the Holy Spirit. Closing oneself off from the Holy Spirit means not only a lack of freedom; it is a sin. There are many ways one can close oneself off to the Holy Spirit: by selfishness for one’s own gain; by rigid legalism — seen in the attitude of the doctors of the law to whom Jesus referred as ‘hypocrites’; by neglect of what Jesus taught; by living the Christian life not as service to others but in the pursuit of personal interests; and in so many other ways.

However, the world needs the courage, hope, faith and perseverance of Christ’s followers. The world needs the fruits, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, as St. Paul lists them: ‘love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.’ The gift of the Holy Spirit has been bestowed upon the Church and upon each one of us, so that we may live lives of genuine faith and active charity, that we may sow the seeds of reconciliation and peace.”

In looking out into our parish it is wonderful to see how parishioners are willing to use their gifts for the betterment of our parish. As we celebrate this Pentecost Sunday, I would like to provide you, our parishioners, with an update on just how I have seen the Holy Spirit moving within our parish of late, and where I expect more things to progress as we head into the summer months.

More and more ministries are starting up again, not to mention new ministries in development. There is a group of women starting up a Women’s Prayer Group, to complement the existing one for the men of our parish. A committee on racial justice within our parish community is also forming. There are still more ministries that could use people’s gifts and talents. The staff and I plan on providing an updated ministry fair for late August.

This weekend we welcome Fr. Steven Kluge, OFM, who will be joining our parish staff. Fr. Steve and I were ordained together in 2001. Alongside the friars, I welcome Fr. Steve and look forward to having him in our local fraternity and sharing in our ministry to Sacred Heart. Over the summer Fr. Steve will be looking at what ministries he will be getting involved in.

The alcove alongside the spiral staircase will be enclosed to create a more private confessional.

Our Maintenance Committee has been hard at work, and we have several projects that we hope to complete this summer. In the church, we will be working with a restoration company to reinvigorate and fortify our front doors, along with the side entrance, handicap doors. In our alcove featuring the spiral staircase leading to the choir loft, a glass enclosure will be installed to create a more private confessional.

Up at the North Campus, two buildings are set to be renamed. The library will be renamed “Alumni Hall,” in memory and recognition of the alumni of the school. In an effort to make the space more useful for our ministries, the space will be redecorated, including painting and adorning the walls with photography and images that depicted life at Sacred Heart Academy while it was open. Our docents will be assisting with this venture.

Incremental progress continues on many North Campus projects.

Also slated for a name change is the old Pre-Kindergarten building, which will be renamed “St. Bonaventure Hall.” The restoration of electricity to the building is still scheduled for an early summer completion. Once restored, we can investigate if the air conditioning unit will also need replacement. We will also have to look at updating the bathrooms in that building as well. Our goal is to get it up and running for the Fall so that ministries can start using it for additional meeting space, reducing potential timing conflicts.

We’ve had initial talks about a way forward in updating the kitchen within the North Campus cafeteria. We are in the preliminary stages on this, trying to determine what the project would entail, and what functionality is of most need. It is then that we would be able to get an estimated cost to fundraise toward.

I look forward to providing you more updates as these exciting additions to our parish continue to come to fruition.

Peace and All Good,
Fr. Mike