Let’s Cool It!
Fr. Dave Reeson
Our parish plan is to pay off phase two of “Pave the Way” and have one-half the money on hand before we proceed with phase three which will include a new more efficient Air Conditioning System for the Church and Social Hall. In order to keep the old Church/Social Hall AC units running, we have had the AC units repaired and serviced seven times since I have been here in the past two years which is rather costly for our parish. We have slowly but surely been paying down phase two of “Pave the Way” but we still owe $147,700.
I would like to get the three quotes for the new AC units, as is the policy of our Finance Council, and secure ASAP the funds to pay off “phase two” and raise one-half the funds for “phase three” so we can move more quickly to replace the units. I encourage you to join me in making a sacrificial gift that will help make St. Columbkille’s not only the best parish but also the “coolest” Church in the Archdiocese of Omaha. When it is 95 degrees with 90% humidity outside we will all be happy that we pressed hard to secure the new energy efficient units! If anyone is interested in what I am willing to contribute to the cause, I am even willing to “release my tax returns!”
I am so delighted with Deacon Eldon Lauber, Michelle Grzwya and Doug McWilliams who prepared our Easter Candle, which is the largest in the Archdiocese. If you missed it on our Parish Blog, see the story below.
Preparing the Easter Candle
For the past 34 years, Deacon Eldon Lauber carefully prepares the Easter “Paschal” candle for St. Columbkille.
In 1983, Brother William, Director of Office for Divine Worship in the Archdiocese of Omaha, taught one of our very own deacons, Eldon Lauber, how to prepare the Easter candle for the vigil service held on Holy Saturday. For the past 34 years, Deacon Eldon Lauber has followed Brother William’s instructions and carefully prepared the Easter “Paschal” candle at St. Columbkille.
The Paschal candle represents Christ, the Light of the World. The pure beeswax of which the candle is made represents the sinless Christ who was formed in the womb of His Mother. The wick signifies His humanity, the flame, His Divine Nature, both soul and body.
Michelle Grzwya, Deacon Eldon Lauber, and Doug McWilliams with the largest Easter Candle in the Archdiocese.
Five grains of incense inserted into the candle in the form of a cross recall the aromatic spices with which His Sacred Body was prepared for the tomb, and of the five wounds in His hands, feet, and side. The wooden spikes are inserted into the candle and melted beeswax secure them in place.
The Easter Vigil begins with the blessing and lighting of a new fire, symbolizing our eternal life in Christ, and is used to light the new Easter candle. The candle, representing Christ himself, is blessed by the priest who then cuts a cross into the candle, the first letters and last of the Greek alphabet, (Alpha and Omega `the beginning and the end’) and the current year, as he prays:
Christ yesterday and today; the Beginning and the End; the Alpha; and the Omega. All time
belongs to him; and all the pages. To him be glory and power; through every age and forever. Amen.
The priest then lights the candle from the new fire, saying: “May the light of Christ rising in glory dispel the darkness of our hearts and minds.”
The Easter candle is used throughout the Easter season until Ascension Thursday. It is also used at every funeral Mass and Baptism throughout the year.
We are grateful to Deacon Lauber for taking the time and special care to prepare our Easter candle each year. Thanks also to Doug McWilliams, our candle preparation “apprentice” and Michelle Grzywa for her efforts to prepare our worship space for the Easter celebration.
More photos on our Parish Blog