After Christmas, we sometimes think of January as a lull month, but what a faith-filled month we see!
We have World Day of Peace and Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God on January 1. Both offer so much meaning to Mattie and to us.
January 6 gave us the Feast Day of André Bessette. Mattie had a very special connection to St. André, praying to him to “finish my reason for being.” Mattie’s prayers were answered and a dangerous medical crisis came to an end, giving us several more years of Mattie on earth.
Next week we celebrate Catholic Schools Week. We look to Mattie who demonstrated that young people can move mountains and do matter.
This week we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and also witness to the right to life. Below in the next section are some thoughts from Mattie’s Mom, Jeni Stepanek, on Mattie and Martin Luther King, Jr.
In advance of this week’s March for Life, we ask “What is a life worth?” Mattie had quite a life and left his mark. But before he was born, Mattie was in danger, like others diagnosed with a disability in the womb. What the world would have missed if Mattie had never been born.
“Mattie was not an accident. He was not a mistake. He was a spirit meant to be,” said Jeni.
In 2001, when Mattie was 11, he spoke to young teens in Southern Maryland at a prolife rally, explaining that the building blocks of life were hope, peace, courage, forgiveness and kindness. These building blocks, he explained, lead to the understanding that life is a gift, not a choice.
Please join us:
Offer prayers – for Mattie and for all children, for Mattie’s mission of peace and for the Guild as we begin the most active year we have endeavored
Celebrating Mattie’s birthday and peace legacy with recreation, information, food, and fun — for people of all ages and abilities and aspirations!
Peace Day proclamations from the Governor of Maryland, the Montgomery County Council, and the City of Rockville
Remarks from Sen. Chris Van Hollen, Sen. Cheryl Kagan, and other leaders committed to building community
Entertainment & activities, food & fun — that celebrate Mattie’s “pathways and choices for peace”….
Saturday, July 13
1-5 pm — FREE Street Fair “Peace Tent Stations (elements of Mattie’s peace messages shared through arts & crafts, cake & conversation, entertainment & games, moon bounce & more…)
5-8 pm — Happy Hour Dance Party (free entry) (continuing the celebration inside Botanero Restaurant with music, dancing, conversation, and toasting to life with our neighbors)
1-8 pm — Food & Drink Specials (Botanero Restaurant and Fontina Grille — all day specials, including “Sunrise Sangria & Sunset Cerveza” signature drinks poured by local leadrers, and “Tie Dye Peace Punch” for the kids — with proceeds supporting Mattie’s Foundation.
King Farm Village Green area (the streets outside of Botanero & Fontina are closed for the day to accommodate the street fair peace tents and activities)
800 Pleasant Drive, Rockville, MD 20850
Youth and adults, leaders and families…
The outdoor street fair is rain or shine, and FREE!
Celebrate Mattie’s 29th birthday with peace
Mattie is the late teen poet and peace activist who penned 7 NY Times bestsellers on hope and peace and who inspired millions around the world — from children to celebrities.
Mattie was born on July 17, 1990 and died on June 22, 2004 from complications of a rare neuromuscular disease.
The annual Peace Day event is a local celebration of a National Peace Day Campaign that is growing in strength.
“Get to know your neighbors…” — Mattie
with cake and conversation and an afternoon of learning more about
how to begin peace, and
how to teach and share peace with our children and neighbors, and
how to be “okay” with ourselves, our neighbors, and our world, even amid challenges and differences.
15th Anniversary Memorial Mass of Mattie Stepanek – famous and faith-filled young poet from the Archdiocese of Washington
All are invited to the 15th Anniversary Memorial Mass for Mattie J.T. Stepanek on Saturday, June 22 at 11 am.
Mattie’s brief life had many challenges, yet he accomplished a great deal in 13 years, writing six bestselling books of poetry and one bestselling book on peacemaking.
Mattie inspired tens of thousands around the world with his message that life is worthy, hope is real, and that peace is possible.
At an early age, he developed a profound relationship with God, and these spiritual conversations shaped his poems and other writings.
The Mass will be held at St. Francis of Assisi (6701 Muncaster Mill Rd, Derwood, Maryland).
Please join members of the Mattie J.T. Stepanek Guild after the Mass to learn more about the cause for Mattie’s sainthood and how Mattie’s life of holiness and heroic virtue continue to inspire young people today.