Little Flower Catholic Church Blog

The latest news and insights about our Catholic parish.

Blog 1
Church

Restoring the Saturday Vigil Mass

Little Flower Parish Family: Since our return to public Mass on Wednesday May 6, 2020 we have continually reviewed what precautions and procedures we have put in place at Little Flower Parish in an attempt to provide a safe environment with regard to the potential spread of the coronavirus, as best we can.  Updates to Mass Times Over time, along with updated information on how the virus is most likely to spread, together with our

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Blog 2
Church

Lifting the suppression of public Masses

Dear Little Flower Parish Family, Bishop Bill has for now lifted the suppression of public Masses in our Diocese beginning Wednesday, May 6th. That being said, there are still strict guidelines that must be followed if public Masses are to be offered. These primarily relate to the number of people allowed in a church and the need to maintain social distancing. For this reason, it will NOT be possible for anyone and everyone to attend

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Blog 3
Church

The Church is not closed

Dear Little Flower Family, As news broke yesterday of Gov. DeSantis’ stay-at-home order, there was some confusion and miscommunication. As the order stands, churches are allowed to keep their doors open and serve their people as best as possible while still following the Federal guidelines of social distancing and groups under 10 people. With that Little Flower’s day-to-day practice over the last few weeks will continue for the foreseeable future:   The church’s side-door closest to the

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Blog 4
Church

Drawing closer to Holy Week

Dear Little Flower Parish Family,           Today we celebrate the 5th Sunday of Lent as we draw closer and closer to Holy Week and Easter. I pray you and your loved ones are all doing well. Here at the parish things have been a bit quiet, but still busy.   Facebook Masses: For now our goal is to upload a video of the Mass every day (Monday-Sunday) around 10am. The videos can be

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Blog 5
Church

Transitioning to a Virtual Church

Dear Little Flower Parish Family,           This weekend we approach the first Sunday since the suppression of public Masses due to the Coronavirus. But it’s not really called Suppression Sunday. This is actually the 4th Sunday of Lent, called Laetare Sunday, which is Latin for ‘Rejoice”.  This sudden change [I’m still feeling the whiplash of it] has caused us to quickly and creatively reimagine how we communicate and gather as a church family.

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Blog 6
Church

A letter from the Pastor to Little Flower Parish

Dear Little Flower Parish Family, As your pastor it is with a heavy heart that I write this to you. Today our Bishop, in unity with the Bishop’s of Florida and many others around the country and world, has announced the suspension of all public Masses and gatherings, effective noon Friday, March 20, 2020, until further notice. This impacts our parish in the following ways: All public Sunday and weekday Masses are hereby suspended. Catholics

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Blog 7
Church

A letter from the Bishop suppressing Masses

Dear Brothers and Sisters, Greetings in the Lord. I write to inform you of important decisions I am making in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. As Christians, we place all our trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, knowing that our God is always with us and will always watch over us. As citizens of the state, we must do what we can to abide by the rules set up by legitimate authorities in order

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Blog 8
Church

Join us for our Advent Penance Service

Join us at Little Flower Catholic Church at 6pm on December 11th for our Advent Penance Service. We will have six priests available to hear confessions, and they will remain in the church as long as people are still coming. Sin is to the soul what disease is to the body and forgiveness is the Divine operation that heals. Advent is a beautiful time to receive the Sacrament of Penance, as we prepare our souls

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Blog 9
Church

We’re all called to be saints

On the heels of our beautiful parish celebration of St. Thérèse, our Patroness, we arrive today at the feast of All Saints and the beginning of November! These indeed have been days of great joy for our parish family. First and foremost, the saints (and especially St. Thérèse) remind us that happiness and fulfillment are within reach for all God’s children.  Since St. Thérèse promised to spend her heaven doing good on earth, let us

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A portrait of St. Thérèse of Lisieux
Church

A simple gaze towards Heaven

“For me, prayer is the heart’s impulse, a simple gaze towards heaven.” -St. Thérèse When I was in High School, I saved up my money to see a movie with my younger sister on the weekends.  One day, I saw an advertisement for movie simply called “Thérèse”.  At the time, I had no idea what the movie was all about; it just looked vaguely religious.  So I went and found out that it was the story of Thérèse

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Blog 10
Church

Understanding the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)

The Rite of Christian Initiation of adults (RCIA) is a process developed by the Catholic Church for prospective converts to Catholicism  who are above the age of infant baptism. Candidates are gradually introduced to aspects of Catholic beliefs and practices.   The ideal is for there to be an RCIA process available in every Roman Catholic parish.  Those who want to join an RCIA group or class should aim to attend one in the parish where they live.   For those

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Chris Holcomb | Staff Photo | Youth Minister at Little Flower
Church

Chris Holcomb enters the seminary

Dear Parishioners of Little Flower, As many of you have already heard, I was recently accepted as a seminarian for the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee.  This decision was a long time in coming.  However, it is important to note that this step is one of discernment as I pursue this potential calling.   Thank you for your support throughout the years, especially in the many ways you have helped to show Christ to our young people during these past

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A magestic lion standing on a rock preparing kids for vacation bible school
Church

Vacation Bible School 2019: The Adventure Begins!

Hello! We hope that everyone is preparing for a fun summer. Your children have worked very hard all year and are excited summer is finally here. The Little Flower VBS team is also excited to announce and invite you and your children to our VBS event!  Vacation Bible School is June 24th to 28th from 9:00 am to 12:30 pm, and our 2019 theme is “ROAR: Life is Wild, God is Good”!  This epic African adventure is sure

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An aerial view of Sacred Heart Catholic Church shows the words
Church

State of the Diocese Video from Bishop Bill

Please take a moment to watch Bishop Bill’s address to the diocese by clicking here. After serving 18 months as Bishop, he shares his insights on some challenges and opportunities that we are currently facing. We encourage you to share the video with your friends, fellow parishioners and through social media.

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The image of seedlings growing in potted plants is an analogy for how our students grow every year at Little Flower Catholic School
Church

God’s time allows us to grow

Time is an important concept in the Christian life.  In the beginning was the Word. God created the world in 7 days.  The book of Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament is a meditation on the meaning of our time and God’s time.  In the book of Revelation God reminds us that he is “The Alpha and the Omega . . . the beginning and the end.” (Rev 22:13).   As we come the end of another

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Bishop Bill Wack confirms a female student at the 2019 Little Flower Catholic Church graduation Mass
Church

Easter deepens and renews our own baptisms

Dear Little Flower parish, Peace! When I made my first pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2000 (which was the Jubilee Year), I had the chance to concelebrate at the mass of Saint Pope John Paul II. I was also fortunate to see places connected with our Savior. I stood in silent wonder at the River Jordan where our Lord was baptized, contemplating the value and significance of that moment. Since ancient times, Baptism has

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A stethoscope sits curled up on a table
Church

The history of the nursing ministry at Little Flower Church

We wanted to take a moment to introduce the nursing ministry here at Little Flower Catholic Church, their history, and how you can benefit from the generosity of these skilled nurses. Beginning in the early 90’s as “Parish Nurse Ministry” In the late 1990s, Cindy Castellano RN introduced a program called Parish Nurse Ministry through Sacred Heart Hospital with Father Holley’s approval.   Cindy was the first Coordinator and she had four founding members –

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Blog 11
Church

Come see the live action Passion Play presented by our youth group

We invite the entire parish to the Passion Play this Friday, March 22nd at 7PM in the school cafeteria to meditate on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and his great love for us all. When I was in the third grade at Little Flower School, my teacher, the late Mrs. Ruth Stewart, described the liturgies of the Holy Triduum by saying that these special rites “reenacted” the key moments from the final hours of the

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Blog 12
Church

Be unafraid of the swords that may pierce us

Dear Friends, The Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary reflect on moments in the Passion of Christ that we will recall during this season of Lent (the Agony in the Garden, the Scourging, the Crowning with Thorns, the Carrying of the Cross, the Crucifixion and Death), but through the heart of Our Lady. Much like the Israelites in the desert, or the fleeing disciples of Jesus on Good Friday, we are tempted to withdraw from struggle,

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Blog 13
Church

Deacon’s Open Letter to Busy Men

Dear Men of Little Flower Catholic Church, The Men of Saint Joseph movement has been around for a while.  It was the brain child of a parish priest who wanted to get men, primarily young men with families, involved in a process of spiritual growth.  A process and a devotion that they could use to help them become better husbands and fathers over time.  The challenge was how to reach men that were already very busy with

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Blog 14
Church

Pastoral Council Election Ballot

Dear Little Flower Family, With excitement, I am pleased to present the names and biographies of the 12 parishioners you have nominated as candidates for our Pastoral Council. As you know, we have not had a Pastoral Council in the parish since the 90’s, so the formation of this advisory council is both long overdue and greatly anticipated. Through the “yes” of those nominated, the clergy will gain a better pulse of what is happening

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Blog 15
Church

Our youth group returns changed from their recent trip to help those affected by Hurricane Michael

Dear Parishioners of Little Flower, We recently brought eight members of P.A.C.K., our Parish Youth Group, on a service trip to help those affected by Hurricane Michael. After driving the 2.5 hours to Panama City, the focus of the day was simple: to be onsite at St. Dominic Catholic Church and help those affected, and still struggling, from the immense damage caused by the recent Hurricane Michael. The eight youth of the parish that went were

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A white statue of Mary Mother of God in the garden of Little Flower Catholic Church 
Church

Announcing the formation of a Pastoral Council at Little Flower Catholic Church

Dear Little Flower Parish Family, Since we all can’t get enough of election season, now seems an appropriate time to form a new Pastoral Council for Little Flower. Canon Law, which dictates the governance of the Church, states that each bishop may legislate the formation of a pastoral council for parishes in his diocese (CIC, can. 536). Bishop Ricard promulgated such norms for all the parishes of our diocese in January 2004. Upon my arrival,

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Rows of donated clothes available for the poor at St. Teresa of Calcutta Mission at Little Flower Catholic Church
Church

The history and current needs of the St. Teresa of Calcutta Mission

The St. Teresa Mission, now serving about 250-300 families per month, had a humble origin. Our initial response to the needs of our local brothers and sisters was serving donated clothing from the trunk of a car on parish grounds. The arrival of Msgr. Crawford in the 90’s was the impetus for a building structure and formal process to help the needy. Now, in 2018, the Mission not only offers clothing, shoes, household goods, but food

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Blog 16
Church

Gratitude for our successful St. Thérèse parish festival

Dear St. Therese Festival 2018 Committee Heads and Members, Volunteers, Entertainers, Sponsors, Donors, School Administrators, Parents and Students, Parishioners and guests, Peace of Christ! We wish that this letter finds you in the best of health.  Here’s to express to you our sincerest gratitude for the wonderful Festival which we spent together last 21st October 2018.  The festive occasion beckoned for the get-together.  It was a joy that parishioners and families spent such quality time

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Blog 17
Church

The Pro-Life Committee thanks you for all of your generous donations

On October 14th, 2018, the Little Flower Citywide Pro-Life Committee hosted its annual Alpha Center Baby Shower and Fundraiser. We collected donations throughout the month of September. We would like to thank all of our generous donors. Because of you, we were able to donate about 3,000 diapers, 24 Pack n’ Plays which can be used as cribs, hundreds of baby clothes/items and several hundred dollars in monetary donations – 100% of donations were given

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Damage to St. Dominic Catholic Church in Panama City after Hurricane Michael
Church

Urgent Hurricane Michael Relief Needs

Dear Friends, Update: October 17th The Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee in collaboration with Catholic Charities of NW Florida are seeking volunteers. As you may know, two-thirds of the diocese was majorly impacted by Hurricane Michael. We are in need of 50 volunteers, seven days a week, for several months to help with distribution at St. Dominic Catholic Church to assist in distributing water, basic supplies and unloading trucks. The water and supplies mentioned are going directly to

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A statue of St. Thérèse of Lisieux in the garden of the school at Little Flower Catholic Church and School in Pensacola, Florida
Church

Preparing to celebrate the very first St. Thérèse of Lisieux festival | October 21st, 2018

Dear Parishioners and Guests of Little Flower Catholic Church, Peace of Christ! This is to respectfully inform you that the Little Flower Catholic Church and School in Pensacola will celebrate its first ever St. Thérèse Festival on Sunday, the 21st of October 2018.  We will be very honored if you can celebrate with us the feast of our patroness, St. Thérèse of the Little Flower.  There will be religious activities both in the church and in

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Rejoicing in the beautiful feast celebrating San Lorenzo | Little Flower Catholic Church

This last Friday, September 28th, we celebrated the feast of one of our patrons, Saint Lawrence Ruiz, at Little Flower Catholic Church. Though he is not the official patron of our parish, his historical significance as the proto-martyr and patron of the Phillipines gives him a home here at our parish as an example to all of us. For those who do not yet know, Saint Lawrence of Ruiz was born around the year 1600

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A stained glass window portrait of St. Thérèse of Lisieux at Little Flower Catholic Church in Pensacola, Florida
Church

A “Little Flower” in God’s Creation | a homily on St. Thérèse of Lisieux

There is a story of a little girl and, much like other Catholic kids her age, she grew up in a Catholic home, learning her prayers and devotions, and went to her religion classes at her parish Church. She really understood at a young age the goal of what Catholic education is really about: that we are in a relationship with a loving God and the goal of life is to become holy, to be

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An image of St. Thérèse of Lisieux when she put on a play of St. Joan of Arc, her favorite saint, for her fellow sisters
Church

Announcing our St. Thérèse Festival at Little Flower Catholic Church | October 21st, 2018

Peace of Christ! Sometime in August, Fr. Matt requested me to spearhead the the first ever St. Thérèse Festival in October 2018 for the benefit of the church and school. Somehow this gesture gave me an impression that he trusts my pastoral experience in Texas.Even if there are only 2 limited months to prepare for this big event the vision of the church has encouraged me to do better knowing that my pastor and the

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Blog 18
Church

Welcoming 24 candidates and participants into our parish RCIA program at Little Flower Catholic Church

Peace of Christ! I’m extremely grateful to Fr Matthew Worthen, Pastor of Little Flower Catholic Church, for sharing with me his plans and visions for the parish. He is so inspiring and so encouraging. I pray that in my simple capacity as parochial vicar I may be able to assist him fulfill those endeavors, visions and plans. I feel so elated when he assigned me to take care of the RCIA program for the parish.

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Fr. Alberic Lazerna | Staff Photo | Parochial Vicar at Little Flower
Church

Welcoming Fr. Alberic Lazerna OSB, the new parochial vicar at Little Flower Catholic Church

We are very happy to welcome Fr. Alberic Lazera, O.S.B. to our Little Flower Catholic Church and School family here in Pensacola, FL. We know many of you have already had the opportunity to meet him, but we asked him to share a bit about his journey with us, and how God has brought him here for ministry. Monastic Calling I am Fr. Alberic Lazerna, OSB and I belong to the Benedictine Order. It was

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Blog 19
Church

Welcoming Deanna Carmichael, the new Director of Children’s Religious Education at Little Flower

Hello! I am Deanna Carmichael.  Recently I was given the opportunity to serve in the Children’s Religious Education Ministry.   Soon after joining the team I was asked to write something about myself and to highlight Children’s Religious Education in this month’s Parish Newsletter.   I spent several days not knowing what I should write. Then, in Mass listening to Father Alberic’s Homily, it hit me! I just needed to tell my story. How did I get

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Staff Photo | Stephen Sanchez
Church

Welcoming Mr. Stephen Sanchez, the new Principal of Little Flower Catholic School

Little Flower Catholic School is proud to announce the arrival of our new principal, Mr. Stephen Sanchez! He is a lifelong Catholic educator, with extensive experience as a principal/administrator, teacher, and youth minister. He holds an MA in Educational Leadership from Fordham University, Certification in Business Analytics, Accounting, and Economics from Harvard Business School, and a BA in Philosophy from the University of Notre Dame. Though he is new to the Little Flower Catholic family,

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Kid holding up a craft at Vacation Bible School 2018 at Little Flower Catholic Church 
Church

Children’s Religious Education at Little Flower | Ministry in Focus

The Parish Religious Education program provides formal religious instruction and formation for the children of Little Flower Parish who do not attend a Catholic day school. The program seeks to form the children into faithful Disciples of Christ. The program hopes to encourage participants to have a personal relationship with Jesus, a love of the scriptures, an understanding of the creed, an ability to make good moral decisions, active participation in the sacramental life of the

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Blog 20
Church

The Youth Group at Little Flower | Ministry in Focus

PACK stands for “People Aiming for Christ’s Kingdom” and is the high school ministry of Little Flower Parish, open to all teenagers from the ninth through twelfth grades. During the school year, we generally meet most Sundays at 5 PM. The agendas for our meetings vary greatly but usually incorporate prayer, catechesis, and fun games. Our activities are not limited to Sunday nights, however. We host a variety of social events such as bowling nights,

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Blog 21
Church

Learning more about Chris Holcomb, the youth minister at Little Flower Parish

Dear Little Flower Parish, My name is Chris Holcomb, and, as most of you know, I am the youth minister here at Little Flower. My family have been members of this parish for thirty years, and I grew up in Pensacola, graduating from both Little Flower School and Catholic High School. After studying mathematics and theology at Spring Hill College in Mobile, I returned to Pensacola as a youth minister at Holy Spirit Parish before

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Fr. Matt Worthen incensing above the gifts on the altar at Mass at Little Flower Catholic Church
Church

Fr. Matthew Worthen is celebrating seven years of priesthood!

Today is a great day of celebration! Fr. Matthew Worthen is celebrating seven years of priestly ministry for the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee. A little bit about his history… Fr. Matt Worthen was ordained a priest of the diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee in 2011. His first assignment was at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart where he served with both Msgr. Michael Reed and then later Fr. James Valenzuela. He first arrived at Little Flower Catholic Church in the

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Celebrating my first year anniversary at Little Flower Church

Dear Brothers and Sisters, It is hard for me to believe one year has passed since joining the staff here at Little Flower Catholic Church. What a year it’s been! I’ve had the honor of assisting at baptisms, funerals, school Masses, and liturgies with the Bishop. Through it all, I’ve felt welcomed here among you as part of the Little Flower family.My role during the Mass is simple: to assist with the training and formation of

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Students processing out after a school Mass at Little Flower Catholic School
Church

Altar Serving at Little Flower | Ministry in Focus

Here at Little Flower Parish we have a community of thirty-five of our young folks supporting us in the ministry of Altar Server. Included in that number are boys and girls in the third grade all the way through high school. Many began their service just after receiving their first Holy Communion and have faithfully served well into their high school years. We see them at every weekend and special liturgy we celebrate as a parish,

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Smiling youth group students of People Aiming for Christ's Kingdom at Little Flower Catholic Church
Church

Our Youth Group needs your help!

When I recently asked some of our youth why they attend PACK, the answer I received over and over again was that they wish to grow in their faith. Luke Lonergan said, “I come to youth group for group-based soul-searching.” Alyssa Pham emphasized that it’s fun but also provides an opportunity to grown in her faith whereas Jarrett Tindall enjoys participating in his faith life. Perhaps Nancy Cruz puts it best: “PACK is a place

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Blog 22
Church

An update after the Amazing Parish conference

Dear Brothers and Sisters, It is easy for me to say that this parish community has welcomed me in a manner far greater than I expected and has always supported me in the many ministries in which I’ve been involved.  Additionally over the past two years I have, together with Father Matt and some parish representatives, participated in what is known as “The Amazing Parish” process. As a small leadership group we have participated in two

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Blog 23
Church

Being a Sacristan at Little Flower | Ministry in Focus

The ministry of Sacristan at Little Flower Parish is a busy one, an often invisible one, but a crucial one. Every liturgy is made possible by the preparation and planning that happens behind the scenes by our faithful parishioners and volunteers. Let’s hear a little about Al and Lou, sacristans at Little Flower. Al came into the Catholic Church in 2011 through the RCIA process. A Methodist by birth, Al remembers his preparation for his

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Fr. Matt Worthen | Staff Photo | Pastor of Little Flower
Church

Fr. Matthew Worthen is the newly named pastor of Little Flower Parish

It is my great honor to announce that Bishop Bill Wack recently sent me a letter naming me Pastor of Little Flower Church and School. After a year and a half assigned here, it brings me great joy to know that I will be here for another six years. This promise of stability, along with your continued prayers and help, gives me great hope that the parishioners of Little Flower will continue to be formed as Missionary Disciples of

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