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November 17, 2014

Positions Available. The Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities are looking to fill part-time nurse aide positions at St. Mary of the Angels Convent in Williamsville, NY. Nurse aides work as part of a health care team providing personal care services to the sisters / residents of the regional house, including assisting in feeding, bathing, grooming, and dressing. Incumbents will work approximately 20 hours/week, either a morning or afternoon shift. Prior experience working in a long term care facility or with the elderly is helpful. Applicants should forward a resume to bludlum@sosf.org or fax a resume to 716-631-3135.

Festival of Lights. Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston is hosting its 24th Annual Festival of Lights beginning Saturday, November 22 with Mass at 4pm and Blessing of Lights at 5pm. Come see 15 acres of spectacular Christmas lights, including a 9-foot tall outdoor illuminated Nativity scene and a life-size Fontanini Nativity scene in the Basilica. Climb to the top of the Basilica and get an angel's view of the Avenue of Saints and the spirit of Christmas. Festival runs through January 6, with lights on daily from 5-9pm. Shrine open daily 9am-9pm. All are welcome. Admission and parking are free. Gift shop open until 9pm. Call for cafeteria hours. For more information and a schedule of our free music concert, call 716-754-7489.

Spaghetti and Meatball Dinner. The Knights of Columbus Fatima Shrine Council #14622 will host its 7th Annual Spaghetti & Meatball Dinner on Saturday, November 22 at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston from 3-7pm. Tickets at the door. Come for some great food and stay for the opening of the spectacular Festival of Lights! Mass at 4pm. For more information, call 716-754-7489.

Christmas Nativity Sets on Display. The annual display of nativity sets will take place at SS. Columba-Brigid Church located at 75 Hickory Street at Eagle (one block south of Clinton Street in downtown Buffalo). There are 507 creches from 57 countries with a special section for the children. Some sets are made from banana leafs, corn husks, newspapers, automobile parts, rice, cork, coal, and other materials. The display runs each weekend between November 29 and January 4 on Saturdays and Sundays from 1-4pm. It is free and handicap accessible.

Advent: What Are We Waiting For? Advent Retreat by Sister Karen Allen, OSF on Tuesday, December 2 from 9:30am-3:30pm at the Center of Renewal, 4421 Lower River Road, Stella Niagara. This is the darkest time of the year, yet we celebrate God with us. We pray, "Thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven." But the kingdom is more than heaven. How do we vision the kingdom? What have we made our "kingdom"? How many of us are running after goals and treasures that cannot really satisfy? Reflect with us as we seek to bring hope to our place in the world today. Reservations required 7-14 days in advance to ensure adequate seating and meals. For reservations, call 716-754-7376.

Advent: A Path of Expectancy and Joy. This is an Evening of Prayer and Reflection offered by the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph on December 3 from 7-9pm at Immaculate Conception Convent, 5229 South Park Avenue, Hamburg. Please call 716-649-1205 to register.

A Festival of Lessons & Carols. Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston presents its annual Advent program: A Festival of Lessons & Carols on Friday, December 5 at 6:30pm in the National Shrine Basilica. Come enjoy a Friday Fish Fry from 11am-8pm during the Festival. Lights on daily 5-9pm through January 6. Gift shop open daily 9am-9pm. Free parking and admission. Handicap accessible. For more information, cafeteria hours and a schedule of our entire free music concert series, call 716-754-7489.

Advent Evening of Reflection. Take some quiet time away from the bustle and consumerism of the season and spend time reflecting on the meaning of Christ's birth in our world. Dr. Edward Sri will present Walking with Mary through Advent on Friday, December 5 at 7pm at St. Gregory the Great Church, 200 St. Gregory Court, Williamsville. Be sure to invite family and friends and consider inviting that neighbor, co-worker or loved one who has been away from the Church who may be inspired by her message of hope this Christmas.

Seasonal Sounds - A Buffalo Master Chorale Family Christmas - conducted by John Fleischman, Jr. and Paul Ferington. Joyful arrangements of beloved carols and a holiday sing-along for all ages. Saturday, December 6 at 7:30pm at Clarence Presbyterian Church, 9675 Main Street, Clarence and Sunday, December 7 at 4pm at St. Joseph University Church, 3269 Main Street, Buffalo. For ticket information, visit http://www.bnchoirs.org.

Adoption - Jesus was "adopted" by Joseph; Moses by the Queen of Egypt! What does the lived reality of being adopted really mean? Dianne Riordan explores this theme using her own experience, described in her book, "The Names of My Mothers," as a touchstone. Program will be held on Saturday, December 6 from 9:30-11am at St. Joseph Center for Spirituality, 4975 Strickler Road, Clarence. For reservations, call 716-759-6893, ext. 175.

Magnificat - Buffalo welcomes Marangely Gonzalez as its guest speaker on December 6. Registration opens at 9:30am, program at 10am at the Holiday Inn-Amherst, 1881 Niagara Falls Boulevard. For reservations by November 28, call Chris Holden at 716-759-8135.

Blessed Trinity's 2014-15 Concert Series continues with "A Christmas Pie" on Sunday, December 7 at 3pm. The Freudig Singers of WNY, under the direction of Roland Martin, present a concert of traditional and contemporary seasonal favorites including "Gifts for a King," composed by Louisville-based musician Sydney King and dedicated to the group in honor of its 30th anniversary. The concert concludes with a fresh baked pie reception for audience members, as well as an auction featuring signature pies prepared by the singers. Blessed Trinity is located at 317 Leroy Avenue, Buffalo. The Landmark Church is wheelchair accessible and has secured off-street parking. Information at http://www.blessedtrinitybuffalo.org or call 716-833-0301.

All Invited to 40th Anniversary Celebration - Center of Renewal Retreat & Conference Center, 4421 Lower River Road on Sunday, December 7 from 1:30-3:30pm. Interfaith Service and presentation of Mission/Core Values Awards at 1:30pm in the Stella Niagara Sisters' Chapel, followed by a dessert reception and Ministry Recognition Accolades at 2:15pm in the Center of Renewal Dining Room. Award recipients: Father John Mergenhagen - Lifetime Ministry Commitment Award. Core Value Awards: Hospitality & Service - Sister Diane Gianadda, OSF; Spiritual Growth - Sister Karen Allen, OSF; Performance Excellence - Paul Gromosiak. Mission Awards for Retreat Center Groups: Church Award - Knox Evangelical Presbyterian Church; Ministry Award - Faith & Sharing; Hobby/Avocation Award - Friends in Threads Quilters. Everyone is invited. Call 716-754-7376 or email hospitality@center-of-renewal.org to confirm number attending no later than December 1.

Book Signing with Father Bill Quinlivan. Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston will host a book signing with Father Bill Quinlivan in the Shrine's Gift Shop on Sunday, December 7 from 1-5pm. Father Bill will be autographing his new book, "Made to Praise Him: Finding my Song." Come and visit with Father Bill and enjoy the festivities of the day and the Festival of Lights by night. For more information, call 716-754-7489.

Bake-Off, Sale & Auction. The Fatima Shrine Bakers Guild will host its 7th Annual Bake-Off, Sale & Auction on Sunday, December 7 at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston. Entry forms for the Bake-Off are available in the Shrine office or by calling 716-754-7489. Bake Sale will be held Saturday, December 6 and Sunday, December 7 from 9am-8pm. Sunday will also include live music, 50/50 split, a visit from St. Nicholas and free hot cider. The auction of winning entries begins at 3pm. A grand prize and first place prizes will be awarded during auction. Come celebrate a festival day and let us do your Christmas baking for you!

National Night of Prayer for Life. The Barnabite Fathers and Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, 1023 Swann Road (off Rt. 18E), Lewiston, invite all to come and join in a National Night of Prayer for Life in the National Shrine Basilica on Monday, December 8 from 9pm-1am. Eucharistic Adoration, Rosary for Life and silent time will comprise each hour of prayer. For more information, please call 716-754-7489.

Monthly Evening Guided Meditation & Prayer Session guided by Rev. Bette Bond on the First Tuesdays of each month at the Center of Renewal Retreat & Conference Center, 4421 Lower River Road, Stella Niagara. For those who are new to meditation or find it difficult, please join us for guided meditation and prayer. We will learn and practice how to center ourselves in God so we might have a deeper experience in our prayer. No pre-registration is needed. Rev. Bette Bond is a United Baptist-Christian minister in Western New York and a member of the Center of Renewal Board of Directors. This evening session begins at 6:30pm and ends by 8pm. Please use the Center of Renewal door (which will be staffed from 6-6:45 for opening).

Marriage Moment. Advent begins November 30. Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come. (Mk. 13:33) Death is not a welcome thought for anyone, but sad as it is, all of us will face death eventually. Are there any endearing words you want to say to your beloved? Don't wait.

Parenting Perspective. Thanksgiving is next week. For most families Thanksgiving is a time to reconnect. It is also a time when in-laws often mix. Your children benefit from a healthy extended family. Seek to know at least one extended family member better next Thanksgiving weekend. Don't fight. Bite your tongue if you must. Can you find anything positive to say about a black sheep in your family? Do it for the sake of your child.

Looking for ways to enhance your family's Advent Journey? For your free 2014 creative family focused Advent / Christmas season packet of ideas and activities certain to increase and encourage your family's spirituality in practical ways, just contact the Office of Family Life Ministries at 716-847-2210 or email familylife@buffalodiocese.org.

Spiritual Uplift Packet. Feeling sad, down, discouraged, blue? Looking for healthy, wholesome alternatives to cope? Reach out now. Inner healing and hope are a phone call or email away. Please contact the Office of Family Life Ministries for your free packet of practical, easy to use resources to provide you with tried and true antidotes! For more information or a free packet, contact the Office of Family Life Ministries at 716-847-2210 or email familylife@buffalodiocese.org.

Bereavement Packet. St. Paul reminds us in his letter to the Romans of many comforting words. During times of loss, loneliness and grief, we may not feel or recognize God's presence in our lives. Though we can't imagine all the thoughts and feelings you are experiencing right now, we do understand a bit about grieving and that, first of all, it is a process. The Office of Family Life Ministries has a free bereavement packet of materials designed to provide support, especially during the initial stages of grief. For a bereavement packet, please call 716-847-2210 or email familylife@buffalodiocese.org.

*** New Announcements will be published again on November 25, 2014 ***

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