Dear Friends in Christ,

It is with great joy that we are celebrating the 53rd Anniversary of Mary, Mother of the Church as a community of faith, gathered as One Body in Christ! Our history in Burnsville has been marked by significant changes in our community, from new developments springing out of farmer’s fields, to becoming a bustling suburb of the Twin Cities Metropolitan area.

Mary, Mother of the Church History

The first Sunday Mass was celebrated in the gymnasium at Cedar School on Sunday, September 12, 1965.

Our own main Church space has gone through changes, too. I would like to invite each of you to a presentation in October: “The History of our Parish Worship Space – 1965 to present” given by our Liturgy Coordinator, Roxanne Tozier. Over the course of an hour, Roxanne will share with you the history of Mary Mother, how the Church arrangement reflects an understanding of God and each other, how our space contributes to our full and active participation in liturgy, and the changes that have been made over the past 53 years. This presentation is also valuable in understanding how Fr. Burns and the Parish Charter Members applied the liturgical documents of the Vatican II Council to design the worship space.

This presentation will be given in the Mary Center, with the following dates and times:

Tuesday, October 2 at 7:00 pm
Wednesday, October 10 at 6:30 pm
Sunday, October 14 at 9:45 am

I am encouraging everyone to attend. Knowing our history is a foundational part of any parish process that involves change. I have asked our Staff and Parish Leadership to lead a parish wide discussion about installing a large, permanent crucifix within our worship space. This discussion comes at a most appropriate time in our culture. Perhaps you have felt it yourself and noticed how many in the world seem to be searching for genuine self-sacrificing love? As well, the current sexual abuse crisis in the Church has jarred each of us to our core.

Is our culture to fall into the darkness of despair? Our discussion of the placement of the crucifix in our parish life hopes to lead us through this world’s darkness and into a New Life in the Spirit! Our parish discussion will also take place in the refreshing light of the Vatican ll Council, where, in the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, we are told that at the core of our faith is the Paschal Mystery. This is the Mystery through which we find true love and life in Christ, as well as the joyful fulfillment of all of our human activity, in the life, death and resurrection of
Jesus Christ!

To help facilitate the next step of our parish discussion, we have invited Fr. Bob Schwartz to be with us at Mass on the weekend of October 27 and 28. This weekend will follow Roxanne’s presentations. Fr. Bob will share his personal story of bearing the cross and his own experience at Our Lady of Grace Parish in Edina where the crucifix was welcomed and installed after a time of study and prayerful reflection.

Once again, all are welcome to the discussion. With Fr. Tim Rudolphi and our leadership team, we look forward to being with you at Roxanne’s presentation and we invite you to attend with all of us.