Letters From a Pastor to His People

  • 01 November 2020 | By

    Letters from a Pastor to His People- November 1, 2020

    Dear Parishioners,

    Today, November 1st, we celebrate the Solemnity of All Saints.  This is a holy day of obligation, but because the feast falls on a Sunday this year, we kill two birds with one stone!

    I've noticed, and many of you have jokingly remarked to me, that in my homilies on a particular saint's feast day I'll say, "such and such is one of my favorite saints" or "she's definitely in my top 5."  And my "top 5" is like 500. 

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31 May

Gospel, May 31, 2020

The first reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. On Pentecost (meaning fifty days after the feast of the Resurrection of Jesus by Christians), when the Spirit fills the disciples, it gives them new languages to preach about Jesus. This is the official birthdate of the Church. For this reason, today the entire Church celebrates the great Feast of Pentecost, the coming of the Holy Spirit, and the pouring out of His graces and benefits on all the baptized. The Church will be universal in scope. People of every nation will be invited to join this new People of God.

24 May

Gospel May 24, 2020

In the Ascension of the Lord, the First Reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. Saint Luke describes the last forty days of the Risen Christ on earth, teaching and preparing the apostles for His departure. Jesus instructed the Apostles to remain in Jerusalem to receive the Holy Spirit, the source of power. Then Jesus was lifted up in the sky and was covered by a cloud covered: The disciples received the angelic message that the ascended Jesus would come back again in glory “in the same way as you have seen Him going into Heaven.” Jesus’ Ascension marks the end of his journey on earth and signals the beginning of a new era.  It is through the Holy Spirit that God's Plan of Salvation will continue until the end of time. And the mission of the Church also begins under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

17 May

Gospel May 17, 2020

On this sixth Sunday of Easter, the First Reading comes from the Acts of the Apostles. After the martyrdom of Stephen, a severe persecution broke out, and all the followers of Jesus except the Apostles scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. God uses this terrible event to bring the Good News to the people of Samaria, a people despised by Jews. These verses focus on the evangelization ministry of Philip, one of the first Seven Deacons: “Philip went down to the city of Samaria and proclaimed the Christ to them.” 

10 May

Gospel May 10, 2020

 

 

On this fifth Sunday of Easter, the First Reading comes from the Acts of the Apostles. As the Christian community “new Church” grows so rapidly in numbers, there is conflict around the care for poor widows. It seems that widows among the Hellenists -Greek-speaking Gentile Christian or to Jews who spoke only Greek- do not receive the same care as Hebrew widows -Palestinian Jews who spoke Aramaic- living in Jerusalem. This has also caused a problem for the Apostles. In caring for the widows, time set aside for the preaching of the Word has been reduced. The Apostles resolve both problems by having Greek-speaking Jews select seven men to take over the ministry of caring for the widows. The Apostles lay hands on the chosen seven and pray over them. And thus begins a new ordained ministry in the church— the diaconate.

03 May

Gospel May 3, 2020

On this fourth Sunday of Easter, the First Reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. At the conclusion of Peter’s first sermon to the Jews assembled in Jerusalem for the feast of Pentecost, he announces that the crucified and risen Jesus who is both Lord and Christ shares divine authority with the Lord God. After Peter proclamation, the audience, convinced of their own sin and of God’s love for them ask “What must we do?” Peter tells them that they must “repent, be baptized, and receive forgiveness and the Holy Spirit, who is given for you and for all who are far off.” In telling believers to repent, Peter calls for conversion of mind, heart, behavior, and relationship to follow the Risen Lord. The final verse in today’s reading notes the increase of believers through the power of the Word and gift of the Holy Spirit.