I have been praying about writing this for a few weeks now. It is a letter of praise and thanksgiving to our Lord Jesus for His love and mercy, as well as thankfulness for the witness Fr. Chad gave me of God's unlimited love for me.
Quite some time ago now, my husband had an affair. It was devastating. Not only did I have to mourn the loss of what I thought marriage was supposed to be, but my faith life went from a waterfall of grace to a trickling fountain that I could barely turn on. While my husband was deeply sorrowful and was finally seeking help for his issues, I felt completely broken. A lot of the thoughts I had when I was away from the Church came back with such a vengeance. The enemy knew how to attack me with fears, anxieties, and feelings of unworthiness to come before Jesus. I was afraid to go to Jesus, afraid of what might be in store for me if I kept striving for holiness, afraid of what my next cross would be.READ MORE
Today we are given such an insightful Gospel to help us grow in faith and our discipleship. Our Gospel is the well-known analogy Jesus uses to describe who God is, and who we are meant to be in relation. Jesus said to his disciples, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower, and you are the branches”. You and I are the branches, and if we remain in God, and God in us, we will bear much fruit. Jesus goes on in the Gospel to illustrate 2 kinds of branches- branches that bear fruit and those that do not. Today, I will describe these 2 branches, as well as the fruit that grows, and how this growth of fruit is the journey to true discipleship. To help highlight the growth, I will share a true story of a young man named Daniel. So, let us look at ourselves and examine if fruit is or is not growing in our lives, discover what this journey to discipleship really looks like, and reflect on how we still might need to grow.READ MORE
Today, on this 4th Sun of Easter, like it is every year, our Gospel is a portion of John chapter 10 in which Jesus describes himself as the Good Shepherd. This is a well-known analogy of Jesus which is given to help us know who He is. But before you think, Oh I’ve heard all about the Good Shepherd, I want us to look at this passage as a chance to measure our lives against the ideal of the Good Shepherd, and challenge ourselves in the areas we fall short. We know that Jesus, the Good Shepherd, will never leave or abandon but will always care for and protect us, his flock. Indeed, God, in Christ Jesus, has entered into a covenant with us, his people, and He will never go back on that covenant. Therefore, He sent His Son Jesus, to be the Good Shepherd, who has laid down his life for us, his flock, to save us and bring us back into Communion with Him. God is the Good Shepherd who will never go back on that covenant He has made with us, His people; but this homily will not focus so much on this truth itself, as much as how we, his people, are to relate to that truth. I feel inspired to challenge each of us, including myself, to reflect upon the high standard that we are given in the Good Shepherd. Hopefully, for many, if not all of us, this homily will cause us to take a hard look at ourselves, our lives, and those around us, to be inspired by the Good Shepherd. So, let us ask our Lord to open our mind and heart to what He wants to reveal to you today.READ MORE
Our parish feast day is coming up – and this year, with double-blessings! As you may know, the Feast of Corpus Christi moves around a bit since it is liturgically celebrated on the Thursday after Trinity Sunday, which is the first Sunday after Pentecost (50 days after Easter)! This year, Corpus Christi falls on the same day as the Feast of the Visitation, which was when Mary visited Elizabeth following the Annunciation. How blessed we are to have so many opportunities to celebrate the events in the life of Our Lord and Blessed Mother!READ MORE
Our Gospel for this Easter Sunday is from Luke, which comes immediately after the appearance of Jesus to the 2 disciples on the Road to Emmaus. If you remember that story, 2 disciples who had been following Jesus when he was alive, now were leaving Jerusalem and going back home after Jesus’ death, saddened because they thought he was the Messiah who would save them. On their journey of 7 miles from Jerusalem to Emmaus, Jesus appeared and walked with them, and while they were walking Luke describes, “beginning with Moses and all the prophets, Jesus interpreted to them all that referred to Him in all the scriptures”. Then when they were sitting down for a meal, “Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them”. And at that, at the breaking of the bread, their eyes were opened and the recognized that it was the Risen Jesus with them all along.READ MORE
Happy Easter everyone! Christ is Risen!!!
For those of you who came to Mass here last week, you know that the Deacons preached. Thankfully, they each did a great job preaching on Divine Mercy and helped keep Fr. Rey and I busy in the Confessional by inspiring you (and I) to go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation regularly. I am sure Fr. Rey will attest also, that heartfelt and honest Confessions are one of the greatest joys of being a priest. Even though the Deacons preached, I was inspired by last Sunday’s readings, so I thought I would share my reflections with you here in the bulletin. (For those of you who might have been excited that I wasn’t preaching, sorry, even that can’t stop me!)READ MORE
In May of 2000, Pope St. John Paul II canonized St. Faustina Kowalska and declared the Second Sunday of Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday. Here are a few quotes from St. Faustina's Diary pertaining to Christ's message of mercy.
Paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the signature: Jesus, I trust in You. I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and [then] throughout the world. I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over [its] enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory. (Diary, no. 47-48)READ MORE
Having delivered His farewell address from the pulpit of the Cross and finished the work of His Eternal Father, Jesus bows His head and dies. To make certain of His death, a centurion, Longinus by name, pierces His heart with a lance and the Divine Master, who saved up a few drops of His Precious Blood, now pours them out to prove that His love is stronger than death.
Two men who lacked courage to declare their affiliations while He was living, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, brought perfumes and spices and embalmed the body of Jesus. It was first laid on Mary's lap, and it seemed to her that Bethlehem had come back again — but really it had not. Between Bethlehem and Calvary our sins had intervened.The body was lifeless. Jesus was dead.READ MORE