18 Jun 2016

This Week Letter – June 19, 2016

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Dear Parishioners and Friends,


Each of us carries our own cross within, struggling with health, family, work, and our community. Meanwhile, the idea is to help Jesus along His way of the cross, and through our own cross, to be closer to Him.

If we assess the words of Jesus individually they are not always easily understood and easily acceptable.  But our faith demands obedience, and that we follow the example of the most perfect, only begotten Son of God.  We know that participating in Masses and prayer are an expression of faith, but we are less willing to accept problems and suffering. How do we handle this? And what about our life, our family and responsibilities? And in general, what is this about?

The prophet Zechariah, one of the oldest prophets, chose to reproach the chosen people on their lack of piety, which is the basis of truly getting to know God. The same God, through Zechariah, announced an outpouring of devotion that all could experience when He said: “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have wounded, and they shall mourn for me, as one mourns for his only son, and shall cry for me, as one cries for his firstborn.” (Za 12,10b) This is an announcement of redemption, one whose validity we still feel today, despite the passage of time.

The death and the resurrection of Jesus are events that in spite of everything lead us to goodness, mutual understanding and love. This is what Saint Paul said in his letter to the Galatians, telling us that thanks to what we have already achieved personally and collectively, “there is neither Jew nor pagan, there is neither a slave nor a free man, there is neither male nor female, all are one in Jesus Christ.” (Ga 3, 38).

Therefore, the words of Christ, “If anyone wants to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me” (Lk 9,23b) are our most important calling, not only to take up the cross, but for a call of unity, and godliness, and for the profession of the truths of faith in every waking moment.

This is especially important right now. Soon you will travel with your family, with a group of friends or individually. You will find yourself on hiking trails, and taking vacations. Do not forget during this time who we are, thanks to whom we are here, and what awaits us if we admit our love for Christ no matter where we are.

Today in the U.S. we celebrate Father’s Day. I wish all fathers, that they be strong in faith, hope and love. That they be a reflection of the loving and Heavenly Father in heaven, and that they always lead their children down God’s path. May the Heavenly Father bless you and give you a long and beautiful life, and may He one day reward you with eternal happiness in heaven. God bless!