Pastor's Corner 033113

posted Apr 3, 2013, 1:01 PM by Music Director

On behalf of our parish clergy and staff, I want to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy and blessed Easter!  We are all deeply grateful for the many of you who have shared with us your joy in this great feast with cards, gifts, and wonderful foods. 

As we reflect upon and celebrate Our Lord’s victory over sin and death, let us hear His call, once made to His original disciples and now passed on to us:  “You are witnesses of this.”  (Luke 24:48)  By our words and deeds, may we show that we are, indeed, children of God, followers of Christ and heirs of God’s promise of rising to everlasting life with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

But just as the Resurrection did not come without sacrifice, let us remember that if we are truly His followers sometimes we, too, must sacrifice something of ourselves, to “die with Christ so we may live with Christ.”  (2 Timothy 2:11).  Such sacrifice can take many forms, but the greatest is sharing in Jesus’ own sacrifice by participating in the Eucharist each and every Sunday and major holy day. 

Volunteering one’s services to the parish and wider community is another form of sacrifice, in keeping with the Lord’s command to “love your neighbor as yourself.”  (Matthew 19:19)  Financial support of the parish and other charitable works is also good, necessary, deeply appreciated and greatly rewarded.  Remember, the weekly offering isn’t a “cover charge.”  It is your sacrifice for the support of our mission, its facilities and employees.

As we rejoice and give thanks for the gift of eternal salvation, let us remember all those who gave their lives that others might be free and safe, and commend them to the Lord to receive the fruit of His sacrifice: eternal life in the world that has no end.  Let us remember and pray for all our troops serving our country, and those places still waiting for light to shatter the darkness of evil, particularly the Holy Land, where peace remains so elusive and frustration and despair so rampant.  Let us pray that those who embrace the evil of terrorism will be converted in mind and heart and resolve to settle their disputes peacefully.

Let us also keep in our thoughts and prayers the people of our region who are still trying to recover from devastating Superstorm Sandy, and those throughout our country and around the world suffering the effects of natural and man-made disasters.  Let us particularly remember the people of Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Holy Land and other places where war and terrorism shatter the Easter message of freedom, salvation and peace. 

And with special joy this Easter, we celebrate the election and installation of our new Holy Father, Pope Francis I.  We are all struck by his great humility and simplicity.  What a tremendous sign and model to our world, which seems to be filled with people who are everything but simple and humble.  God has done something marvelous for us to behold in Pope Francis.  Let us keep him and his mission in our thoughts and prayers.

Sacrifice is difficult; but as this great feast reminds us, the rewards are out of this world!  Happy Easter, everyone!  And may God continue to bless our efforts in the glorious Name of His Risen Son!

 

In His Love,

Fr. Mike

 

 

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