Thursday, August 28, 2008

Women's 127th Cursillo

Last weekend (August 21-24) was the 127th Women's Cursillo of the Arlington Diocese. Two Saint Anthony of Padua parishioners, Jane Karpick and Pamela Sanchez, attended the Cursillo weekend -- and parishioners Carole Schloss and Mary Lou Miller along with administrator Carol Poplin were on the Cursillo team for the weekend. The retreat was held in the beautiful setting of the Dominican Retreat House in McLean -- seen above with some wandering Cursillistas.
  • If you might be interested in making a Cursillo ("short course" in our faith) weekend or are just curious about it, feel free to talk to Fr. Grinnell or Fr. Nicolas. It's a wonderful weekend of faith and friendship (and snack food). The next Men's Cursillo (the 117th) will be October 23-26 at Missionhurst, another wonderful setting for a relaxing, but invigorating weekend.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Car Wash Saturday, August 30th

Effetá (one of the parish's young adult groups for spiritual, social, and musical activities) held a fund-raising car wash last Saturday starting at 8:30 am. There was great music and refreshments!

For music-lovers, Effetá's recent album, Incondicional, is available for purchase on iTunes or from Effetá ( to hear samples of the music). Their next concert (Ritmo & Fe) will be Saturday, October 25th; tickets are available in the Parish Office.


On Monday August 25th Priests from our sister parishes in Haiti met with interested parishioners to give updates on what is happening there. The food crisis has hit the parishes hard. A bag of rice has risen 500% in price. This translates into feeding the school children twice a week, instead of five times. If you would like to assist, Father Nicolas can provide more information.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Youth Trip to Kings Dominion

The day was beautiful and the rides and the park were fun as the Youth Ministry held its recent, annual trip to Kings Dominion! Maria Calacan, the parish's Coordinator of Youth Ministries, led the trip -- that's her driving their luxurious chartered bus (driving on the other side of the road like they do in Australia). There's no word on how many roller coaster rides were made that day by the youth, but you can definitely tell who the chaperons are -- the one's who look tired!

World Youth Day

A small Youth Ministry team from Saint Anthony of Padua (including Fr. Baez and Youth Minister Maria Calacan) attended the recent World Youth Day in Sydney, Australia. They found that the trip to Australia was really long -- even with a stop in California to visit the many historic missions there. Once in Australia, they found chilly winter weather (the Southern Hemisphere has winter when we have summer) as can be seen in the above picture. However, the Masses and worship services including the Pope's Mass were wonderful, uplifting experiences and the enthusiasm of the young people was inspiring. Ask Maria for details of their adventures in the "Land Down Under!"

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Healing Touch

The healing ministry and Father Grinnell are highlighted in a special In Focus section of the August 17 2008 issue of Our Sunday Visitor newspaper. The main article, “Healing ministries bring comfort those who are hurting,” describes the healing ministries of the Catholic Church in detail and quotes Father Grinnell:

“...Actual cures from the healing services are rarely authenticated, but physical, emotional and spiritual cures are occurring, said Father Tuck Grinnell, moderator of the Catholic Healing Ministries of the Diocese of Arlington, Va.”

“‘I tell people I can’t guarantee if they are going to be healed of cancer, or diabetes, or their depression, but if they have a contrition I can guarantee their sins will be forgiven when I invite them also to go to confession,’ said Father Grinnell. ‘If you are carrying a burden and you want to lay it down tonight – do it...’”

“The norms for Masses with healing services include prayers for healing within the Mass during the general intentions and often a blessing of the prayer ministers. After the Mass concludes, prayer ministers, often including the priest celebrant, stand in positions around the church and people come up to be blessed and prayed over, said Father Grinnell, who is the pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Church in Falls Church, Va. Father Grinnell has celebrated healing services almost monthly for 18 years in the Arlington diocese.”

“‘We have a regular Mass, and the only thing different is after the general intercession we say a prayer over the prayer ministers’ who then pray over those who come up for a blessing after the conclusion of Mass, said Father Grinnell, who said he has no special healing gift.”

“Each service always includes a priest hearing confession, and at times Father Grinnell will hear confessions rather than joining in the laying on of hands if there is not a priest to hear confessions, he said.”

“‘There are some marvelous healings – some emotional, some physical, some spiritual,’ Father Grinnell said. ‘The reason I am so committed is it yields a great deal of spiritual peace. There is a beauty about the fact that everyone is there praying for themselves or someone else. It doesn’t sound very exciting but it yields some beautiful stuff.’”

A sidebar article, “Physician reminded that ‘nothing is impossible with God’ after healing,” describes the inspiring story of Dr. Rex Ruiz and his experience of the healing ministry in at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Vienna, VA. The article also describes the beginnings of the healing ministry in Arlington diocese and Father Grinnell’s role in it.

“One of the several stories of healings related by the administrator of the Arlington (Va.) diocese’s healing ministry is that of a medical doctor [Dr. Ruiz] and married father of young children….Catherine Griffin, administrator of the Arlington Diocese Catholic Healing Ministries, said Ruiz’s recovery is one at which she marvels. Griffin helped found the ministry after she found consolation through a healing service in Baltimore after the unexpected death of her husband from cancer. She asked parish priest Father Tuck Grinnell to moderate the ministry, and he has celebrated a special Mass 11 months a year since 1990 at various churches in the Arlington diocese.”

For more information about the healing ministry in the Arlington diocese, visit their web site The next Mass and healing service will be on Thursday, September 18th at Saint John the Apostle Catholic Church in Leesburg, VA at 7:30 pm. The 18th Anniversary Mass and healing service will be on Friday, October 17th here at Saint Anthony of Padua at 7:30 pm. As Father Grinnell describes, the Mass and healing service is a wonderful spiritual and healing experience; if you know someone who is ill but cannot attend the Mass and service, you can also attend in their place to pray for them or have them prayed for.

If you would like to read the full articles in the OSV newspaper, please come by the parish office (open 9am to 9pm Monday through Friday). For information about Our Sunday Visitor visit their web site

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Jesus My Friend Choir

The 5:30 pm Mass on Sundays is now blessed with a wonderful new choir formed by the Jesus My Friend prayer group. Not only do they provide beautiful music, but their elegant choir robes bring color and brightness to this popular evening Mass. (The choir robes were sewn by members of the prayer group.) For information about joining any of our choirs, see Joleen Michalowicz, Choir Coordinator, or any member of a choir.