Dear Parish Family,
There is nothing like a sudden summer thunderstorm. The air becomes very still, the light dims and, off in the distance, the faint rumblings of thunder can be heard. Then the skies darken, the wind blows, lightning flashes, thunder roars, and rain falls from the heavens in torrents. But after the storm, one can step outside with arms raised in praise. The air smells fresh and clean. The dry earth welcomes the wetness and the plants seem alive to growth. Perhaps one might even see a rainbow in the sky. In wonder God reveals himself to us in the imagery of his creation. How like the account of Pentecost in the “Acts of the Apostles”!
In stillness the disciples, along with the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the holy women, wait in prayer. Their spirits are dimmed as they recall Jesus’s words resounding in the back of their minds to return to Jerusalem and await the coming of the Holy Spirit. Suddenly from up in the sky there comes a loud noise like a strong driving wind. In tongues of fire the Holy Spirit pours down upon those gathered in the Upper Room and they are filled with the gifts of the Spirit. Renewed in mind and heart, the apostles rush out to proclaim the message of the Risen Lord. A large crowd has gathered because of the noise that was heard and Peter begins to speak to them. Like the parched earth those in the crowd are ready to absorb the words of eternal life and that day about 3000 repent and are baptized. The seeds of faith are planted and the Church begins to grow!READ MORE
Dear Parish Family:
If you think of everything you do every day in order to be healthy, how long would your list be? I think for many of us we know we should do more than we actually get done. It could be eating right and exercise, personal hygiene, laundry, cooking organizing and investing in personal relationships. If we let anything go for too long, it catches up with less than happy consequences.
Today we celebrate “Corpus Christ Sunday” or “The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ” this feast came into existence precisely at time in history that people were losing their personal faith and devotion to the great truth that in our Mass, the very presence, body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ is made present for us. It is our “daily bread.” Yet too often we human beings can go stale in our fervor. We can take spiritual things for granted because we don’t perceive their immediacy like we do our physical needs. If we don’t eat for day, we know it. Believe me I’ve tried it. I feel weak, irritable and tired. The same is more true in our spiritual dimension. However many people think it is possible to get by without Mass, because they are spiritual people. It’s ironic how true the statement is and how badly applied is the conclusion that the most spiritual activity we could do is commune in the flesh with the living God is somehow “not necessary.” There is a spiritual maxim: the more we grow in our spiritual lives, the more we recognize our sinfulness and the things that must change in our lives. The Bread of Life, that is Jesus is the source and summit of orienting us to holiness of life and helping us to put everything else into perspective.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family,
The opening sentence of John's Gospel today does a good job of describing how God feels about us: "God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life." But if you look at the sentence closely again, John says that those who believe might not perish and might have eternal life. He doesn't use the definitive verb will but the conditional verb might. That's because there is no guarantee that we will achieve eternal life in heaven. So what does it take to get to heaven and achieve eternal life? Great question. I'm not sure I know the answer, but I can put forward some ideas. If we go to church every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation and go to confession once or twice a year, is that enough? Well, we know that receiving Jesus' body and blood is both the source and summit of our relationship with Jesus Christ. And certainly going to confession absolves us of our sins, no matter how serious. It's a great start…and an essential ingredient to punching our ticket to heaven. But there's more to it than just a checklist. And I know that because of that sacrament called baptism. Through our baptism, we are called to be a light to the world. Striving to be a light to the world signifies a much more active participation on our part then sitting in the pew every Sunday. And for those of us who are cradle Catholics, we really didn't have a choice in our baptism. But then through confirmation we received additional graces and were filled with the Holy Spirit to go on our mission as a light to the world. And this happened just three weeks ago when Bishop Paul confirmed 133 young adults at St. Magdalen's. And it also happened this past Pentecost Sunday when14 adults were confirmed at the 10:30 am Mass.READ MORE