top of page

July 2023 Newsletter

Updated: Jul 18, 2023

Men of Signum Crucis, happy Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul!

Men, there’s a little of Peter and Paul in each one of us.

Peter was called from a very ordinary life as a fisherman by Christ to bring others to the Church. Peter followed Christ without fuss or objection. Paul was a man from Tarsus who benefited from the lifestyle of an upper class Roman citizen who received a highly sophisticated Greek education, and later traveled to Jerusalem to learn scripture from the scholar Gamaliel. Paul came to know Christ kicking and screaming, eventually being knocked off his high horse.

In today’s Gospel, we hear that Peter proclaims that Jesus is “the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Later, we know that Peter denies Jesus three times. Before his conversion, the Pharisee Paul persecuted Christ and believed that speaking to or dealing with a Gentile (a non-Jew) was absolutely forbidden by the law, yet later he becomes the “Apostle of the Gentiles.”

Can we relate to Peter and Paul? I can. Because we are human, though made in the image and likeness of God, we have our share of failures due to concupiscence that comes from the fall of Adam and Eve. The question then becomes: What do we do when we fail? Pick ourselves up and recommit to following the example of Christ? Of course. That’s what Peter and Paul did.

And in the end, both Peter and Paul wore the red martyr’s crown. As a non-Roman citizen, Peter was crucified, but since he did not consider himself worthy to be crucified as Jesus was, he requested to be crucified upside down. The Romans gladly granted his request. Romans would never crucify one of their own, so Paul was beheaded instead.

Men, there is a little of Peter and Paul in each one of us, right? But are we willing to wear the martyr’s crown?

Whether or not you think of yourself as a martyr, when you live “a life boldly for Christ” and exhibit your faith even in the face of insult or mockery, you are a martyr. Click here to learn more about the three types of martyrdom, especially white martyrdom, which we called to live every day.

May Sts. Peter and Paul, models for us men, intercede for us and help us to become better men for our families and to live boldly for Christ.

Men, I have received so many compliments regarding the program on Fraternity on June 21. Our thanks to Dr. Jamie Smith, Deacon Ray Purvis, and Father Paul Clark for providing such great information regarding the need for all men to form fraternity. Remember that we all have at least one thing in common: we have come to these Wednesday gatherings because we know there is always more that we can learn and love about our faith. By your presence at our gatherings, you are an inspiration to someone or several simply by your presence, and in many cases by your thoughts, words and deeds. Every man in the Men of Signum Crucis is needed to “raise the bar” for all of us as together we build up this “Fraternity through Study, Devotion, and Service” here in mid-Missouri.

Many have asked us to begin to video our Wednesday evening presentations so we can review them again when we have time to digest more later. We will work on that in the future. If anyone has equipment to professionally video our events, please let me know.

Men, I mentioned at our gathering on June 21 that I would provide a link in this newsletter to an interview by Al Kresta (“Kresta in the Afternoon,” 4:00 p.m. on Catholic Radio 88.1 FM in Jefferson City or 94.7 FM in Columbia) of Leo DeLorenzo, a teacher of Theology at the University of Notre Dame regarding several titles of St. Joseph that we invoke in the Litany of St. Joseph at the end of each gathering in the Commons. Here is the link:

The interview regarding the Litany of St. Joseph begins at the 22:00 mark of the recording. I hope this is helpful in explaining and to reflect on so many of the titles of St. Joseph in the Litany.

Thank you for continuing to communicate with members of the Planning Group regarding our gatherings. I am aware that some of you felt that our time for fraternity was cut short by the testimonials on June 21 that I asked Jeff Cassmeyer, Kenney Newville, and Ken Sandbothe to deliver. I appreciate your feedback and we are considering an earlier start to the evening so that we have sufficient time for both our Study/Devotion and the fraternity that is needed in the Commons. More on this later.

Once again, if you wish to communicate with any of the Planning Group regarding your thoughts, here is the list of members of the group:

Next week marks the celebration of the beginning of our country on July 4, and also First Friday and First Saturday. I hope that you enjoy your Independence Day celebration, but also consider attending Mass on either First Friday or First Saturday (or better yet, both). Check your bulletins this weekend or your parish website for Mass times.

Men, again, I hope you will mark your calendar to help at the Diocesan Women’s Retreat on October 6 and 7 later this year. I assured Barb Prasad we would have all the manpower she needs to staff the registration desk and help serve the meals at their retreat. It will be held at the Cathedral. This will be a great way to help the ladies in our area so that those attending can focus full attention on the retreat itself. Men who volunteer will be able to hear the keynote presentation by Teresa Tomeo, the host of Catholic Connections, aired most weekdays at 8:00 a.m. on 88.1 FM (Jefferson City) and 94.7 FM (Columbia). To learn more about Teresa Tomeo, click here.

Finally, in anticipation of the Marian Feast of the Assumption in August, our gathering on July 19 will be a combination Study/Devotion regarding the Miraculous Medal. The Miraculous Medal has had an amazing history and a huge impact on the Church. In August we will transition to the devotional of the Brown Scapular (many wear both the Miraculous Medal and the Brown Scapular–some wear the medal inside the scapular). Therefore, the July and August gatherings will both be a combination Study/Devotion event in the Chapel. So, on July 19, we will officially begin our evening in the St. Pius X Chapel at Helias at 6:30 p.m., with an optional Rosary at 6:00 p.m. in the Chapel. Please come, and bring a son, father, brother, uncle, or friend. Afterwards, we will enjoy a cool summer treat in the Commons while our fraternity grows.

A couple other reminders:

  • As I have mentioned several times recently, Dr. Ray Guarendi, otherwise known in Catholic circles as the host of the Catholic Radio show, “The Doctor Is In,” will be the keynote speaker at the 10th Annual Catholic Radio Fundrasier, to be held at Helias in the Chapel and Commons on Saturday, July 8. Please contact me if you are interested in attending or helping out at the event. This would be a great service opportunity for the Men of Signum Crucis, so please let me know if you can help and/or wish to attend.

  • I hope that each of you will invite at least one new man from your family or circle of friends to the Men of Signum Crucis gathering on July 19. Please continue to share the “wealth” of the Men of Signum Crucis with other men in your circle. Remember that men do not have to be Catholic to be a member of our fraternity.

Thank you for your fidelity to this fraternity of Men of Signum Crucis.

Men, St. Joseph “chose hard.” Let’s choose to do the same.

St. Joseph, Foster Father of the Son of God, and patron saint of the Men of Signum Crucis, pray for us.

In hoc signo, vinces,

Mark Rehagen

Future Gatherings:

  • July 19, 2023 (Miraculous Medal Study/Devotional)

  • August 16, 2023 (Brown Scapular Study/Devotional)

  • September, 2023



bottom of page