Fr. James' Letters

May 14, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

We’ve slightly shifted the focus in the Mass readings to the Holy Spirit. In our first reading we hear about the Apostles traveling to Samaria to pray for the Christians there, specifically to lay hands on them “that they might receive the Holy Spirit, for it had not yet fallen upon any of them.” The Lord in the Gospel says, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always.”

Pentecost is a couple weeks away, and so it’s like the Church wants us to start preparing for the feast by thinking about the Holy Spirit. I wonder if we could view these two weeks like a mini “Lent.” Lent prepares us for Easter. These weeks can prepare us for Pentecost.

What was the point of what we did in Lent, by the way? Why did we go to Mass more or give up chocolate or whatever? Because we wanted to notice and appreciate the presence of God in our lives. You might not have been explicitly aware of it, but when you were abstaining from meat on Fridays or doing whatever it was you did during Lent, God was in your life. You were living the spirit of God. That’s a good place to be in, which is why a lot of us, I think, actually enjoy(ed) Lent.

Well, God has more in store for us. He did some great things in our souls and in our community this Lent and Easter, but he wants to do more. When he sends the Holy Spirit anew this year at Pentecost, something great can happen.

But only if we prepare for it and want it.

What more do you want in your lives? What kind of personal gift are you looking for? Think about it and then begin to pray for it now. You might even consider doing the Pentecost Novena, which would start on May 19th, to help you.

We do so much planning in our lives. We’re starting to plan for the summer. We plan our gardens. We plan our finances. This is all good. That’s what’s kind of encouraging about, for instance, the Chicago Bears. Yes, they were bad last year, but at least there was a sense of a rebuild. The Blackhawks, on the other hand, seem to be kind of directionless. Yikes.

Anyways, don’t be afraid to plan for souls. Pentecost is the start of a new season.

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Happy Mother’s Day. To all the mothers and women in our parish, thank you for your presence in our lives. We love you and appreciate you. You are images of the Blessed Mother, and Jesus is very proud of you.

Please find inside the bulletin this week’s Daily Reflections on Mary for the month of May. May they assist your spiritual journey this spring.

Congratulations once again to all of our First Communicants. We had our last set of First Communions this past Saturday, May 13th. A special thanks to the hard work Mrs. Parkhill and her team put in for the beautiful liturgy.

Please join us this Sunday, May 14th, for the Family Mass in the Holy Family Chapel at 10:30am (the 10:30am UC Mass WILL still be occurring). The next Family Mass will be June 11th. If you are interested in being involved for future Masses, or would like to have your child involved, please reach out to Jennifer Waters (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Please also join us for the first session of The Search on Tuesday, May 16th at 7:30pm. The Search is an evangelization program (similar to Alpha, if you’ve heard of that) that’s intended to assist our own faith and then equip us to help others come to or back to the church.

Next Saturday, May 20th is the SPC Community Garden Planting. Father Nick will lead a prayer in the garden 9:15am. Thank you to all who have plots and grow delicious vegetables for our food pantry.

Also on Saturday May 20th is Priesthood Ordinations for the Archdiocese of Chicago. Deacon Kevin Gregus, our seminarian, will be ordained a priest this day at Holy Name Cathedral. Congratulations, Father Kevin. And congratulations, Deacon Martin Nyberg, who was ordained a deacon this past Saturday at Holy Name Cathedral!

Your Servant in Christ,

Who is Fr. James?

Father James Wallace grew up in Winnetka, Illinois and attended Sts. Faith Hope and Charity grammar school, New Trier High School, and then The George Washington University in Washington DC, where he earned his undergraduate degree in Political Science in 2007. He attended seminary at The Pontifical North American College in Rome and was ordained a priest in 2012 for the Archdiocese of Chicago. In addition to being the pastor of Saint Paul of the Cross Parish, he serves as a canon lawyer for the Archdiocese, a dean in Vicariate II, and a professor of canon law and spiritual director at Mundelein Seminary. He is also one of the featured Mercy Home Sunday Mass celebrants, airing Sundays at 9:30am on WGN.

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Contact Information

St. Paul of the Cross

320 South Washington Street
Park Ridge, IL 60068

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Phone: (847) 825-7605

Mass Schedule

UC = Upper Church
HFC = Holy Family Chapel 

Monday - Friday

6:25 am UC

8:30 am UC


8:30 am UC - weekday Mass

4:30 pm UC - vigil


7:30 am UC

9:00 am UC

10:30 am UC and HFC

12:00 pm UC