It is hard to believe that we are in the second week of Advent, with just a couple of weeks to go before the celebration of the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. The season of Advent is a call to persevere and vigilance as we celebrate not just the historical event of Jesus’ birth, but also our central belief that Christ will come again in glory to judge all humanity . Our liturgical readings this weekend reflect on this great truth and prepare us for the long-awaited coming of Christ.

The Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary, holy day of obligation, will be celebrated at St. Thomas, 7 p.m., Friday, December 7.

Liturgical teams for this weekend: Saturday, 7 p.m., St. Catherine’s, Mark Clements (Lector), Marky and Gabrielle Clemens (Servers) and Barb Gilligan (Extraordinary Minister) and Sunday, 11:30 a.m., St. Thomas, Walter Bialkowski (Lector), Michael and Lena Lewis (Servers) and Tom Socha (Extraordinary minister).

Tioga County Penance Services in preparation for the Christmas Season, another chance to refresh our souls: Thursday, December 13, 7 p.m., St. Peter’s Church, Wellsboro; Wednesday, December 19, 7 p.m., St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Elkland and Thursday, December 20, Holy Child Church, Mansfield.

Our Angel Tree is up. Be sure to pick up an angel. Gifts need to be returned this weekend.

The second collection for this weekend will be for the Capital Campaign Fund, to help us get the heat restored at St. Thomas Church, and our retired religious: priests, sisters, brothers and ordered priests who have worked for little or no pay and do not have enough money to pay for their retirement care.

Each Christmas, the flowers in the church during the season, memorialize deceased loved ones. If you would like to contribute to this year’s Christmas flowers in memory of a loved one, please use the envelope found in your monthly packet and place in the collection basket or write the word memorial on an envelope with your donation and place in offering basket.