After a beautiful High Mass and an excellent homily on the virtue of charity, Father Avis presided over a party afterwards in the parish hall. Father offered prayers in honor of the Nativity of the Blessed Mother (September 8th), and blessed the refreshments offered at the gathering. Father mingled throughout the crowd and proved to be a very genial, open and friendly person. Many parishioners in the hall commented on how his very presence generated a light-hearted and cohesive spirit among the congregation.
Since his ordination in June, 2007, Father has been serving as a Vicar at St. Francis de Sales Oratory in St. Louis and has also been saying the Latin Mass at the Holy Family Log Church in Cohokia, Illinois. Cohokia is just across the Mississippi River from south St. Louis.
In his letter to parishioner published in the Sunday bulletin, Father Avis wrote: "I was sent here to be your priest in order to teach you, to guide you, and to sanctify you. We should never forget that your final destination is the Beatific Vision in Heaven. But in order to obtain this goal we must live our Catholic Faith, and as your priest, I will assist you, that in eternity, we will all rejoice with the whole heavenly court before the throne of God".
It is very apparent that Father Avis is truly a pastoral priest, primarily interested in the sanctification of the sheep in his flock. We hope and pray for Father's success and for his contentment in his new responsibility as Rector of the Oratory.