02 Jul 2016

This Week Letter – July 03, 2016

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Dear Parishioners and Friends,


Summer and vacation for some is a time of carefree rest. Others suffer from disease, poverty and unemployment. We are all concerned about the increasing aggression of young people, the irresponsibility of the government and severe lack of peace in many parts of the world.

The Word of God offered to us today, on the fourteenth Sunday of ordinary time,  fits well with the issues that every human being faces today. Our current situation, is reflected in the “Constitution of the Church of the Modern World,” Vatican II: “The joy and hope, the grief and anguish, especially that of the poor and suffering, are also the joy and hope, grief and anguish of all followers of Christ” (GS 1). Just as we experience peace and mercy, flowing from faith and the sacraments of the Church, the suffering, difficulties and problems sown by Satan and his slaves fall upon us. But where sin increases – in the words of St. Paul – there abundantly grace pours (Rom. 5:20).
Jesus said that real joy exists, and it can be even greater: the joy of those who work hard, who it may seem have not achieved much, but offer their work to God. Just as the Apostle of the Sahara, Charles de Foucauld, was murdered by those whom he had converted said: “Jesus is Lord of the impossible.”

Today’s readings reflect the great realism of the Gospel.  They include Paul’s mysterious scars – marks that signify his belonging to Christ (Gal 6:17) as well as Jesus’ concern about the worldly affairs of his disciples (Lk 10,7).
As we begin our summer, the gospel (Luke 10: 1-12. 17-20) shows us how patiently and painstakingly  Jesus was teaching the apostles.  This formation and catechesis was no longer the twelve selected, but seventy-two, sent to proclaim the Good News. In this number of seventy-two disciples, we can find each of us, regardless of age, status or any other differences. Every Christian, is a student of Christ. With their life, their example and  their testimony, we should all preach the living Gospel of love, forgiveness and sacrifice.  The proclamation of the Gospel is to be based not on trust in the measures of the rich and powerful, but trust in God and the “Lord of the Harvest”. Jesus sending the disciples off, told them what is most important. He said, “pray and preach the gospel, do not teach, convince and convert. Use prayer to stay in constant contact with the One who sends you. Talk to him. Entrust in Him the effort to combat evil.  Share the good news with those you meet on your way. Shake the dust off your feet and leave the places where you are not wanted.”

I encourage everyone to pray for the intentions of the Church and the world, which is experiencing a deep crisis. A clear lack of vocations, and at the same time the pursuit of material goods and advertising evil aberrations and deviations. God is our only hope and our power! God bless!