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July 2023

Dear Friends of St. Anne's Shrine,

We recently read at Sunday Mass one of my favorite passages from the Gospel according to Matthew:

"Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light."
(Matthew 11:28-30)

These comforting words of Jesus are an invitation to all of us to rest in Him and to be nourished by His presence. There are many distractions in our modern society that can prevent us from hearing this invitation. Amidst daily life, there is too much noise and many things compete for our attention. Technology is a blessing, but it also can harm our spiritual development. Our various responsibilities can steal precious time and deter our growth as disciples. It is important at times that we quiet ourselves and allow ourselves to hear the invitation of Jesus to rest in Him. And it is just as important to respond generously to this invitation.

Rest is important, both physically and spiritually, and St. Anne’s Shrine is a ministry where women and men of all ages make pilgrimage to rest in Jesus. Many pilgrims visit the Shrine for worship while vacationing this time of year. They are seeking to recharge their batteries and be re-created. Vacations allow all of us to be renewed and provide time to pray about matters that are important to us. Many of the retreats and programs we offer are designed for pilgrims who have accepted the invitation to rest so that a deeper relationship with Christ may happen.

We have had several retreats since opening in May, including a Directed Retreat, which had a record number of people participating. The Wednesday Reflection Series is off to a great start and the annual pilgrimage for families of the Diocese of Burlington had an excellent turnout for both a Sunday Mass and a bountiful cookout. As the summer season progresses, we look forward to the VT Knights of Columbus visiting, scheduled days of recollection and the celebration of our feast days on July 26th for St. Anne and August 15th for the Assumption of Mary.

Our expanded programming, investments in staff in a tight labor market and the upkeep of our grounds and facilities amidst inflation is challenging our resources. A family from Massachusetts has come forward with a $35,000 match for this appeal to help us cover these costs. Each dollar you contribute for the operations of St. Anne’s Shrine will be matched, up to a combined total of $70,000! Please help us realize this generous matching-gift opportunity. Please also submit the intention form so we can remember your prayer requests. Thank you for your continued support of the Shrine and be assured of my prayers for you and your family.

Sincerely in our Lord,

​​Rev. Brian J. Cummings, S.S.E.

Spiritual Director

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