School Open House Sunday, January 26 – 12:30 to 4:00 p.m.
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Msgr. Norb Ernst
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January 2020

Our Parish Council has been discussing the subject of “church security” for some time now, even before the recent shooting in that church in Texas. The Archdiocese has been offering active shooter training for the teachers and staff in our Catholic schools for some time, which we have participated in. In October of 2019, they began to offer related training for the larger parish.

Our Parish Council has arranged a church security training day here at SMMA on Feb. 22nd, 9:00 – 10:00 am in the Parish Center. In the Archbishop’s letter of encouragement to parishes, he said…“it is especially important for the priests, deacons, greeters, ushers, and lectors to attend the presentation.” However, any parishioner would be welcome to attend. Of course, we hope and pray we’ll never have to use what we learn.

Hopefully, you’re aware of our 5th Sunday of the month collection for our St. Vincent de Paul ministry. All the “loose” money goes to this ministry on those weekends, as well as other donations that come in throughout the year. Here’s a summary report on their efforts to help the less fortunate of our area during this past year:

Total Donations = $35,401 – with $22,866 from SMMA contributions
Total Help Given = $37,279 (for rent, utilities, transportation, etc.)

As you transition into the new year, perhaps you are thinking about how you could leave a legacy for your family and your parish family. In developing your plans, remember the value of “planned giving” – including our parish and/or our school as part of your estate. Many donors appreciate the option of endowment funds as a way to support the parish and the school they love. We have two endowment funds (parish & school) – and a non-endowed tuition fund – which are managed by the Roman Catholic Foundation of Eastern Missouri. You are always welcome to call me to discuss planned giving.

Each year in January the Catholic Church in America celebrates CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK (this year: Jan. 26 – Feb. 1). We’re planning some exciting events here at our SMMA Catholic Grade School beginning with an Open House on Sunday, January 26th. There can be no better gift parents can give their children than a Catholic Education. Our parish is greatly blessed to have a Catholic Grade School which receives the support of all parishioners.

While Catholic Schools can be expensive these days, remember there are always scholarships and tuition assistance available. I remind our parents that there is one website for all the scholarships (Beyond Sunday, Alive in Christ, Catholic Family Tuition Assistance) for the 2020-2021 school year. The application period begins on January 27th. Go to: for information about tuition assistance scholarships for all Catholic Elementary and High Schools (including SMMA of course).

Happy Ordinary Time!

Msgr. Norb Ernst – Pastor



The Archdiocese of St. Louis has developed a new system for safe environment compliance called Prevent and Protect STL. Everyone (clergy, employees and volunteers) ministering to minors and vulnerable adults in the Archdiocese are required and asked to register in the new system before December31, 2020. Click here for more information.

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