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Welcome to Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Bellingham, WA.
Sacred Heart Parish is a Spirit-filled community of persons who follow the teachings of Jesus Christ through the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.
As Parishioners of Sacred Heart we witness the presence of God in our community as a family, bound together by the Word and Eucharist. We journey together through worship, education, service, social activities and stewardship. We use our gifts and talents to reach out to others.
Regular Mass Schedule
As many of you, I’m sure, saw last weekend a generous benefactor has stepped forward and given the Parish a beautiful chalice in commemoration of the church turning 100 years old this year. Up until this point we have been using the chalice that my parents gave me for my Ordination, a traditional gift from parents to their sons on the day of the first Mass celebrated. On weekdays, we have a nice chalice given to the parish by the Polish community some years ago, but it’s nice to be able to do something a little different on Sundays to distinguish it from the rest of the week.
The new chalice has a marvelous depiction of Jesus and the apostles at the Last Supper, complete with Judas and his bag of money on the rear side. It is of tremendous quality, and, as I’m sure you all saw from the smile on my face, it is a joy to use for celebrating the Sacred Mysteries. The red background on the cup matches nicely with our Sacred Heart window, creating wonderful symmetry between these two sacramentals.
Back in the seminary we were instructed by the priests that the chalice, since it holds the blood of Christ, should be one of our most prized possessions. This was reiterated by one of the priests I grew up with who told me that my chalice should be the most expensive thing that I own. While I can’t speak to the accuracy of this statement, since my parents gave it to me and I don’t know the cost, I do know that my chalice is truly something special and I always treat it with the highest reverence.
In the tradition of the Church the chalice is to be made from the most precious of materials, especially in the area of the cup that holds the Precious Blood. This is something that is consistent across cultures, as the type of chalice used varies from place to place. The Church has never proclaimed that there is one particular material that is to be used, only that we give God the best that we can, with the stipulation that the material used shouldn’t absorb the Precious Blood. This is a principle that we would do well to extend to the rest of our “give God the best that we can;” I’m sure He can take it from there. The idea of what is precious varies from place to place, which helps to make up the rich diversity of our faith. We here at Sacred Heart are deeply grateful for the generosity in our midst and hopefully will use our new chalice to honor God for years to come.
Fr. Joseph Altenhofen