Father Toole to teach the Gospel message at Sacred Heart in Brevard
BREVARD — With the expansive church filled with worshippers, Sacred Heart Church in Brevard welcomed its new pastor recently in a special bilingual Mass of installation celebrated by Bishop Peter J. Jugis.
Father Patrick Toole, formerly parochial vicar at St. Matthew Church in Charlotte, was installed July 23 as pastor of the 63-year-old parish situated near the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway. It was a warm reception for the young priest in his first assignment as pastor.
Sacred Heart is a unique parish community of close to 500 families, being comprised mostly of retirees and vacationing Catholics, more than one parishioner remarked following the installation Mass, and at 32 years old Father Toole comes with a much different background than their former pastor, Father Carl Del Giudice, who has moved to Our Lady of Consolation Church in Charlotte. Father Del Giudice served Sacred Heart Parish for 21 years, and some said they "weren't too sure about this" change when they were first informed of it.
So what do they think of Father Toole so far?
"He's a winner," said Tom McGohey, and his sentiment was echoed by others.
Besides being his installation Mass, Father Toole requested from Bishop Jugis that it also be a special votive Mass offered for the Sacred Heart. The beautiful prayers of the votive Mass mirrored the effusive character of the parish.
During the installation Mass, Bishop Jugis reminded Father Toole of his priestly ministry to teach, sanctify and shepherd the faithful in Brevard. To fulfill his role, he must not only know people's names from a distance – he must serve them as Christ served: "to know your sorrows, to know your difficulties, to know your challenges, to know your joys and your celebrations – to be the Good Shepherd."
The self-sacrificing character of the Sacred Heart, Bishop Jugis noted in his homily, especially expresses this divine love of God for His people.
"It's just amazing to consider the mystery that is present in the Person of Jesus. Humanity and divinity come together: God our Good Shepherd coming down from heaven, taking humanity to Himself, so that He could express all of the love of God, all of divine love, and mercy and compassion in a human heart – the Heart of Jesus," he said, adding, "The heart of your pastor, Father Toole, is to be an expression of that Heart of Jesus, the Good Shepherd for you."
He also encouraged Father Toole to see the Eucharist, the source and summit of our faith, as the life-giving sun emanating rays of love and warmth that will feed all of the ministries of the parish – which at Sacred Heart number more than 50.
At the conclusion of the Mass, Father Toole expressed his thankfulness and said he looked forward to working with everyone in sharing the Good News of Christ. He thanked Bishop Jugis and his fellow priests who had traveled from around the vicariate and from Charlotte to be a part of the Mass, as well as everyone who helped to prepare for the special occasion. He also recognized seminarian Brian Kaup, who grew up in Sacred Heart Parish and is now pursuing studies to become a priest for the Diocese of Charlotte. Kaup served at the Mass, along with fellow seminarian Casey Coleman.
"I'm very happy to be here as your pastor, and I want to thank all of my colleagues for being patient with me these last few weeks as I figure out what the heck I'm doing," he joked, evoking laughter from the congregation.
As many parishioners nodded their heads as they listened, Father Toole concluded, "We are a parish community that is open and welcoming of God's love and sharing His gifts with one another. We are one community of faith here at Sacred Heart."
— Patricia L. Guilfoyle, editor
Photo carousel will auto rotate. Click on image to advance to that photo or enlarge.
Deacon Jim Toner: Should I become a priest?The following letter offers one perspective about entering the seminary. "Davey" is fictional. Hi, Davey. Your Grandpa and I go back a very long way, and I appreciate his suggesting that you ask my advice about becoming a priest. I advise...
The Poor Clares: The art of discernmentIt's the million-dollar question: "How do I know if God is calling me to be a nun?" In my experience serving as vocation director for our community of Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, this is always the burning question. Regardless of age,...
Joshua Davey: Saint can teach us a lot about threats to religious libertyAs an attorney, I have a particular devotion to St. Thomas More, patron saint of lawyers, whose feast, along with that of fellow martyr St. John Fisher, the Church celebrates on June 22. Today, the vigil of the feast of St. Thomas More, coincides...
Dr. Ronald Thomas: The Sacred Heart is aflame for usThe feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus had a long history even before it was given definitive shape by the spiritual visions and ecstasies of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in the 17th century. The feast concerns the love of Jesus as symbolized...
Matthew Warner: Why the world doesn't take Catholicism seriouslyFor years I've been immersed in Catholic media and the ongoing conversation within the Church of how to carry on as the Church. And, of course, in the West, at the heart of this conversation is the fact that within the next generation half of...
Lennie Cox: What is spirituality, anyway?Recently I was asked to elaborate on my spirituality. In an attempt to answer I found myself listing my devotions, prayer life, Mass attendance, parish participation and personal initiatives. As this list poured out of my mouth, my head began...
Gretchen Filz: On the feast of the Visitation, two mothers rejoiceOn May 31, the last day in the Month of Mary, we celebrate the Feast of the Visitation. On this feast day we remember the occasion when two expectant mothers – the Blessed Virgin Mary and her cousin Elizabeth – came together to celebrate...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
Vatican II called for post-conciliar liturgical adaptationsThe April 26 Catholic News Herald commentary entitled "The Honest 411 on Vatican II" discussed a participant's experience at an adult education series in the diocese. The course, "The 411 on...
Warrior saints are found throughout historyRegarding the April 26 letter criticizing St. Nicholas of Flue, I am disgusted that an American would insinuate that a soldier who distinguishes himself or herself in combat is not following...
Who would be worthy?In a letter in the April 26 Catholic News Herald, St. Nicholas of Flue was referred to as someone who "did not follow those teachings" of Christ because he defended the faith with his sword and...
FROM THE PASTORS
Read and listen to homilies posted regularly by pastors at parishes within the Diocese of Charlotte:
- Fr. Frank Cancro at Queen of the Apostles
- Fr. Patrick Earl at St. Peter in Charlotte
- Fr. John Eckert at St. John the Baptist in Tryon
- Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann in Charlotte
- Fr. Benjamin Roberts at Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe
- Fr. Patrick Winslow at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Watch full Masses live and on demand, listen to homilies and reflections from Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury
- Listen to homilies from St. William Catholic Church in Murphy