From:                              Saint John Vianney Parish <>

Sent:                               Friday, February 26, 2021 10:48 AM

To:                                   Cathy Berger

Subject:                          Second Sunday in Lent - February 28th 2021


St. John Vianney 105 Vianney Lane Prince Frederick MD 20678 410-535-0223 (Office) 410-535-4395 (Rel Ed) 410-414-9099 (FLC) 410-286-1944 (Food Pantry) Dear Brothers and Sisters, To a certain extent, everyone...







St. John Vianney

105 Vianney Lane

Prince Frederick MD 20678


410-535-0223 (Office)

410-535-4395 (Rel Ed)

410-414-9099 (FLC)

410-286-1944 (Food Pantry)










Dear Brothers and Sisters,


To a certain extent, everyone enjoys some risks in life. Most of us may not be dare devils willing to take a motor cycle over a line of buses, or jump off a bridge with a bundgee cord. There are risks though we are willing to take. It could be anything from dropping a few bucks on lottery tickets or speeding down the highway. It may be a business venture with unsure results or even a career move that is anything but a sure thing.










Whatever the case may be, we tend to take risks in life in order to get a thrill, an advantage or maybe even a reward. One thing is for sure, we rarely will take a risk, if there is no gain.


Yet there are times when we are almost compelled to take a risk. There are times in life when we seemingly have little or no choice. Such is the case for example when a risk is a matter of life and death. Ask anyone who's had to undergo a serious surgical procedure.   Either you lay your life on the line, in the hope of success, or you don't. Either way there's the possibility of tragedy.


The Story of the sacrifice of Isaac in the readings for this Sunday is similar to this type of risk. With Abraham there seems to be no gain or good involved.  Either way, Abraham seems to gain nothing. At the heart of his choice is one result, tragedy. If he refused to sacrifice Isaac, then he risked the loss of his covenant relationship with the Lord. If Abraham sacrificed Isaac, he would lose the very son promised through his wife Sarah. Let's be clear, Isaac was the son of Abraham's old age. His wife Sarah was not about to bear any other sons. If Isaac died, there is no clear sense that any other sons from the union of Sarah and Abraham would be impossible.


Also, it’s good to note that the practice of child sacrifice was not unknown to Abraham. Cultures of the ancient world often had the practice as a means of appeasing the gods. Abraham knew what he was being asked to do. Whatever he did, Abraham seemingly has nothing to gain and everything to lose.


Yet, Abraham chose to risk the life of his son, something that no parent would ever willingly want to do. He chose to be faithful to God, risking his son for the sake of his obedience to God.


Now, the question this leaves us is how much are we willing to risk for our faithfulness to God. The Lord will never ask us to put the life of a child on the line or maybe even our own life. But how much of ourselves are we willing to put on the line in order to be faithful?


Do we draw lines and say only so much and no more or are we willing, like Abraham to make our covenant total? Are we at least able to say, I’ll try, I’ll struggle, and give ourselves over to God? Or, are we unwilling to risk anything at all?


Ask anyone who has ever been in business, there's always an element of risk in any agreement or contract. Ask anyone who's ever entered marriage, there's an element of risk in entering into the marriage covenant. Whatever the situation in life that deals with some kind of human relationships, there is always a chance of hurt or even tragedy. Faith and trust must be part of the agreement. This is the tension we must always understand to be a part of our natural life. Should we think anything differently about our supernatural life with God?


The Lord invites us to be his own people. We are called upon to be honest in that covenant. We are asked to listen to God. True faith, honest faith involves risk.  If we want to believe in God only when its safe, or when it’s convenient or easy, then we live in a fantasy world.  


We risk nothing and thus can lose nothing and our faith has no real future.  Under those terms we want a one-sided covenant.  That kind of covenant is designed to meet our standards and not God's. This is a supreme form of idolatry.  


We set ourselves up to be in charge of the agreement, when all along it must be the other way around. The Lord calls us to conform to his ways. This is not always an easy choice. It is though the choice that leads us toward God. As the Father in the Gospel passage of the Transfiguration says to the disciples, which means he’s also speaking to us, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him.” Our risk is doing it.


Sincerely yours in Christ,
Fr. Joseph B. Pierce









Second Sunday in Lent

Lectionary: 26

2nd Reading Rom 8:31b-34 

Gospel  Mk 9:2-10 










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God bless you today and always! 

Below is a copy of our bulletin for this weekend.   On Saturday evening, it will be uploaded to our Parish website. (click here)    You may also find a history of our parish bulletins using that link.















You can now watch St. John Vianney Masses via livestream from our Parish website (link is on our home page) or from our Facebook page!  Our last Sunday Mass of often recorded and uploaded to youtube!















40 Day Lenten Challenge The Lenten 40 day Contemplative Challenge as an opportunity to deepen our relationship with our Lord in the Trinity.  Details and a simple sign up form can be found here: (click here)










Exposition - During Lent, following morning daily mass on Weekdays (Mon-Fri) there will be an opportunity to stay and participate in Exposition and Morning Prayer. In remembrance of our dearly departed will will pray Psalm 130 following Morning Prayer in our Festival Room.












Reconciliation - Wednesdays at 6:00-7:30 pm during Lent.  1st Fridays and Every Saturday after the 8 am Mass.  For times at other Catholic Churches in the Archdiocese of Washington, go to for a complete listing.










Stations of the Cross - Every Friday through March 26, Stations of the Cross will be at 6:00 pm in the church with the exception of  Good Friday.   On Good Friday,  April 2nd Stations will be at 12:00 noon


Below is a PDF version of the Powerpoint for The Way of the Cross (with text from Scriptures) should you wish to follow along on your phone.  A print version has also attached for your use.  These documents can also be found under documents on our the Resources for Lent page on our website.









Lenten Food Drive Bags for our Lenten Food Drive will be distributed following all Masses this weekend!  Our Food Pantry Truck will be in our Church parking lot before and after Masses next weekend to receive donations (donation items needed can be found here:  (Link here)


Prayer for Vocations During Lent we ask you to pray for Vocations and for the Seminarians of our Archdiocese.  The Prayer and photographs of our Seminarians can be found on our Prayer for Vocations page on our parish website. (linked here).










We have recently been made aware of additional email communications coming from someone claiming to be our Pastor.  Please exercise caution when receiving email ir text from sources other than those generated from our Flocknote (mail@flocknote.comor our Parish Staff.  Email addresses from Parish staff, with the exception of Fr. Pierce will come from a email address.  Fr.  Pierce's email address is  We do not have gmail addresses!









Sent by Cathy Berger













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