Monday, December 9, 2019


Beginning the Church's liturgical year, Advent (from, "ad-venire" in Latin or "to come to") is the season encompassing the four Sundays (and weekdays) leading up to the celebration of Christmas.

The Advent season is a time of preparation that directs our hearts and minds to Christ’s second coming at the end of time and also to the anniversary of the Lord’s birth on Christmas. The final days of Advent, from December 17 to December 24, focus particularly on our preparation for the celebrations of the Nativity of our Lord (Christmas).

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Burundi Women's Choir

St. Leo's Burundi Women's Choir sings an anthem
as St. Leo's children receive their First Communion

May 26, 2013

St. Leo's Burundi Women's Choir sang and danced in prayer at the January 1, 2013 World Day of Peace mass at St. Peter in Chains Cathedral, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Worship Schedule

Mass  Saturday    6:00 pm, Spanish

  Sunday   10:30 am
    Thurs.   7:00pm
Children's Liturgy of the Word    Sunday
10:30 am
Holy Days       Call 513-921-1044 for specific information 
Vigil       Call 513-921-1044 for specific information 
Exposition of the 
Blessed Sacrament
  Following 7:00 pm Mass until 9:00 pm
Confessions   Saturday   5:00 - 5:30 pm
Baptism       Call 513-921-1044  3 weeks in advance 
Marriage       Call 513-921-1044  6 months in advance 
Sacrament of the Sick        Call 513-921-1044 
        Daily Reflections 
The Strangers We Meet

Painting in the vestibule of St. Leo's

The work of the late Fr. Jim Hasse, SJ, “The Strangers We Meet” depicts Christ breaking bread at Emmaus. Instead of more traditional representations, it depicts Christt as a man of African descent, sitting with people of various ages and from various ethnic heritages. All the models were St. Leo parishioners.

“Fr. Jim captured spiritual life in his works, revealing the sacredness in everyday people and everyday actions,“ says Fr. Josephh Folzenlogen, SJ, who lived and worked with the priest painter at Claver Jesuit Ministries in South Cumminsville (OH). “Jim’s paintings were mirrors in which people could see their own beauty.”

Models for the 2004 painting were Timaya Smith (the child in the foreground), Amy Egan, Darnell Edwards, Ivy Peppers, and Rick Nohle.

“Since Jim used people from the parishes and neighborhoods where he worked as his models, the paintings were not just images,” says Fr. Joe. “They were connections with people he loved. Those people were also his children.”

St. Leo parishioner Stephanie Sepate describes the painting as “a beautiful remembrance of purpose” in every life.

“In the upper left of our painting is the figure of the angel by the tomb of the Risen Lord, and the women running to share the news,” she says. “What a beautiful remembrance of purpose in each of our lives — we are not really strangers to each other but we are all one universal family in our life’s journey.”

Fr. Jim Hasse, whose paintings appeared in several publications and are held in private collections, including the art museum at St. Louis University, died in 2011. Most of his paintings are of biblical subjects and feature African-American people he worked with. To see several galleries of his works with associated reflections, click here.

A New Life

Michelangelo sculpted the Pietà in 1498–1499,    taking less than two years to complete. His depiction of the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary after the Crucifixion on the rock of Golgatha is one of the most famous pieces of sculpture known by so many across the world.

Showing the "religious vision of abandonment and a serene face of the Son", Michelangelo did not want his version of the Pietà to represent death, but rather a representation of the communion between man and God through Christ’s gift of life.

For the 1964 New York World’s Fair, the Vatican loaned the Pietà for installation in the Vatican pavilion. A conveyor belt moved people, who stood in line for hours, past the sculpture. It is housed in St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City and is the only piece Michelangelo ever signed.

Several decades ago, St. Leo was gifted with a beautiful representation of the Pietà in memory of the Schuchart Family. Over the years, the wear and tear, fragments of the more fragile areas of the statue cracked or missing, and chipping paint called a friend of the parish to totally refurbish our Pietà. To repaint it with its former colors would have shown the flaws; it was decided to paint it all one color, especially in keeping with the make-up of our parish—all one people. After months and months of prayerful restoration, our Pietà finally came home, quite appropriately, the day before Ash Wednesday.

As we celebrate Holy Week and Easter, we are grateful for Michelangelo’s reminder of the ultimate gift in our midst. The St. Leo Pietà has been given a new life; let us all celebrate a season of renewal in our own lives as Lent ends and as we rejoice in the hope and joy of Easter’s Alleluias!

- Stephanie Sepate

2nd Sunday of Advent

From Fr. Jim:  December 8, 2019

Bivuye kwa Padiri Jim:  
Desemba 8, 2019

(African translation)

Mensage del padre Jim:
8 de deciembre de 2019

(Spanish translation)

   Retirement Fund for Religious:  Today is the collection for The Retirement Fund for the Religious.   Many of us would not be where we are today in the practice of our faith if it were not for the faith of our parents and the faith of the religious sisters and brothers who have dedicated their lives to teaching the faith and living the faith in service of so many of God’s people.  This fund is always a way to show our deep gratitude to them and to show our care and love for them in the needs of their retirement.  In a television advertisement for this fund, an elderly sister with a walker is making her way to her chair in the chapel.  She is saying that there are many things that she can no longer do because of her age but one thing she will always be able to do is pray.  She assures everyone that she is praying for us every day.  She calls this her prayer ministry.  The advertisement ends by asking the viewer to consider supporting the fund in some way and to remember the retired religious because “you know that they are remembering you.”  Thank you so much for keeping them in your prayers and for your generosity.

For Your Advent Prayer and Reflection: As the Season of Advent invites us to be awake and aware of the many ways that God has come, is coming and will come into our lives, where do we hunger the most for God’s merciful love?  Where does our world need it the most?   Come, Lord Jesus, quickly come with your saving grace.

 The Blessed Virgen Mary, from the moment of her conception, was free to say “Yes” to the presence of the Lord in her life without the effects, limits and conditions of sin.  While we do not live our lives sinless as did Mary, nonetheless, we can, like Mary, choose to do God’s will.  God comes to us, too.  What is God’s will for us?  To what is God asking us to say, “Yes?”

 John the Baptist calls for repentance as we prepare for the Lord to come into our lives.  We need to acknowledge our shortcomings and change our ways.  We need help in order to say “yes’’ to God’s will fully and completely as Mary models for us.  We need God’s forgiveness and mercy to keep saying “yes” to God’s will and way of Love.  Where do we need God’s mercy the most? For what do we need forgiveness?  Come, Lord, Jesus, quickly come with your saving grace.

 What can I do In Advent to prepare the way of the Lord?  Simple acts of kindness like holding the door for someone; saying please and thank you; Be kind, courteous and smile; Do works of mercy – feed someone or donate to our food pantry; share clothes with someone or donate to St. Vincent DePaul or Helping Hands in North Fairmount.  Perhaps our parish Wish List in the bulletin can offer suggestions to you.  Listen to someone; free yourself from distractions like the cell phone and be really present to someone.  Celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation; come to our weekly Thursday night Mass; Pray a Hail Mary to our Lady of Guadalupe.  Learn about St. Nicholas, or St. John the Baptist; Introduce yourself in church to someone you do not know and find out a little bit more about them.  Make a family Advent Wreath and light the first two candles.  Come, Lord Jesus.  Quickly Come!

 I recently read this post on Facebook:  “While you are waiting for the Lord, do what waiters do – Serve!” 

Eucharistic Adoration
World Day of Prayer


St. Leo The Great Parish

Rev. James R. Schutte, Pastor
2573 St. Leo Place
Cincinnati, OH 45225
513-921-1044 ext. 21


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