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Weekly Letter from Father Richard

The prophecy of Zechariah speaks of the hope of a people who had returned from exile. It was a hope that no longer looked to restore the glory of a former time (such as it was in the days of King David), but a future-oriented hope for the coming of the Messiah. Zechariah speaks of a different kind of king who will come, "meek, and riding on an ass, ...(who) shall proclaim peace to the nations," rather than a warrior king who would ride in on a horse to bring destruction to enemy nations.

Jesus referred to himself as "meek and humble of heart." As he invited his disciples to come to him (I would say, to abide with him), Jesus was seen as the fulfillment of Zechariah's hope. Jesus speaks of this meekness and gentleness as true wisdom, which is hidden from the clever and learned people of the day. He calls it a source of rest and a relief from burden.

On first examination, this message might seem out of touch with reality: the meek and gentle are ignored at best, abused at worst. However, Jesus is asking his disciples to find their strength in him, to forgo violence to attain their goals, and to use their strength to advocate for those who are voiceless and defenseless. It takes discipline; we are rightly called disciples.

This is the work of a lifetime, for we need not wait long for an opportunity to use our strength in a violent or malicious way against another person or group. This strength can take many forms: intellect, wealth, authority, physical force, gossip, intimidation. By abuse of blessing or embrace of sin, we have ample opportunity to do the wrong thing. Meekness and gentleness, however, are practiced by nurturing community and seeking collaboration, pursuing win/win rather than win/lose scenarios.

This runs counter to worldly wisdom, and so Jesus proclaims that his wisdom is "hidden from the wise and the learned, (but) revealed to little ones." The wisdom Jesus offers is pure gift to us, but it is a gift we must be open to receive. Some in Jesus' day believed they had all they needed from their understanding of the law and the prophets. They did not understand Jesus to be the fulfillment of the law and the prophets, and so his teaching was, in a sense, "hidden" from their (closed) eyes.

We are challenged to keep our eyes open to the possibilities offered by Jesus' way of wisdom, and to proclaim the good news of his teaching on ending the cycle of violence which is far too prevalent in our culture. A rabbi was once asked why God did not destroy Cain for the murder of Abel. He replied, "because God wanted to stop the cycle of violence." We are created in God's image; we are to reflect the divine image, which is peace. 

Father Richard 

Mass Schedule


Saturday Vigil 4:30 p.m.

Sunday Eucharist 8:00 & 10:30 a.m.

Daily Mass

12:10 p.m.

Monday, Wednesday& Thursday

Friday - Location rotates between five residential/care facilities.  Please call the office for this weeks location. 


Wednesday 4:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Office Hours


11:30 - 4:30 

Tuesday - Friday

8:30 - 4:30


Liturgical Ministry Schedule



June 14 September 28, 2014 

2013 Annual Parish Report



Parish Outreach

Our parish is a supporter of a number of outreach organizations in town, including:

Catholic Social Services: 442-4130

Guided by a commitment to respect for life, CSSM serves the varied needs of mothers, babies and children by building and strengthening families in Montana.

Good Samaritan Ministries: 442-0780

Supports family life in our community and enhance human dignity with services to meet the physical health, social, emotional and spiritual needs of individuals and families.

God’s Love: 442-7000

Supports homeless in our community and helps provide food and shelter.

Friendship Center: 442-6800

Supports victims of domestic violence and/or sexual abuse with a broad range of support at no charge.

Helena Food Share: 443-3663

Creating a hunger free community with emergency food boxes monthly and daily produce and breads.

Options Women’s Clinic: 422-1011

Guided by a commitment to respect for life, Options offers a wide range of health care services to women free of charge.

 If the good work of any of these organizations resonates with your desire to serve, please feel free to contact them—and please mention that you are from Saint Mary Catholic Community.