Last week we put our attention on the CREED. Next come the PRAYERS OF THE FAITHFUL.
Now that we have heard the readings and stated what we believe, we ask God to make us people who live what we have just heard.
The Deacon, or if a deacon is not present, a layperson speaks our petitions. Beginning with prayers for all the priests, deacons and religious, we pray for all the people in the Church as well as those who in our world who are suffering in any way. We even pray for those who have already died, that they will find peace in Christ.
We listen and agree mentally to the words that are prayed, then we make the prayers our own when we say “Lord, hear our prayers.”READ MORE
What does it take for our eyes to be opened? Every day, a man laboriously walks down Main Street of town. With great difficulty but graceful determination, he places one foot in front of the other, uses a crudely made staff for support, and walks. His pace is slow, but he walks. What does he hope to see? Where does he want to go? What does he find? We all walk through life. The type of “walking” life requires is not always physical but is most assuredly emotional and spiritual. We walk, we look, we encounter, and we seek. How we do these things and what we actually find is determined by what we carry and what we allow ourselves to discover along the way. If walking is too challenging for us, we may choose to isolate and stay alone.
If we are afraid to walk, we may become overly dependent on others providing for us and abandon the journey. We can walk and pay attention only to what is in front of our feet and never notice the immensity of what is happening around us. The road is never the same twice. The journey is always different. What kinds of things do you notice as you walk through life? It seems that the disciples of the Road to Emmaus missed a lot at first. We do as well.READ MORE
I wonder how many of you listened to a HOMILY for Easter last Sunday?
Our faith is a shield that defends us from lies or wrong ideas that will hurt us if we believe them. When we recite the CREED together, we announce the important truths we believe; we profess our faith. The CREED sums up in a few sentences what we believe as Catholics. The CREED is also a way of handing on our faith to the next generation.
When we profess our faith by reciting the CREED we accept Christ’s teaching as our own.
You can imagine the reciting of the CREED as polishing your shield of faith.READ MORE
A person was going through a very dark time, questioning the meaning of life, not feeling very purposeful or worthwhile, and feeling disconnected and unappreciated. Suddenly, they gazed up at the night sky, found themselves in awe of all the stars and constellations, and exclaimed, “I am here on purpose and I am loved!” Having been brought by God to this moment of intense connection and awareness, his life changed from that moment on.
If we are always preoccupied with the challenges, obligations, and stuff of daily life, we can easily miss the wonderful opportunities when the resurrected Christ is knocking at our door. If we open ourselves to the fullness of experience, we will find ourselves listening and embracing all that is around us, being caught up in the magnificence of creation’s grandeur and knowing in our heart and soul that God is and I am.READ MORE
Last week we discussed GOSPEL. You probably already guessed what is next - the HOMILY. Now the priest or deacon explains the meaning of the readings or some other important topic and tries to show how it applies to our lives.
Some deacons and priests are easier to listen to and understand than others, but the HOMILY is not really about the deacon or priest. It is for all the people. Our part is to listen attentively to the HOMILY. Here are three tips for better listening:
1. Sit up straight and look at the priest or deacon while he talks. If you are distracted and have a hard time paying attention, maybe you should choose a different place to sit. Choose a place where you can focus better.READ MORE
Dear OLPH Parishioners,
May the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your families. First of all, how are you doing? It is our hope that things are going well in your family and we insist that you take care of yourselves by not overstressing. Keep in mind that stresses is the door to other illnesses. Please know that we are constantly praying for you and your family members and remind you that if you need anything from us, you should not hesitate to contact us.
Did you have the opportunity to see the Urbi et Orbi papal blessing on TV? Through this blessing to the Universal Church the Pope implores the mercy of God upon us. In case you didn’t see it, I would encourage you to do so; it was so beautiful. You can find it in any trustworthy website related to Vatican media. Something I noticed was that after the blessing, people had the opportunity to experience the peace of Christ and the trust in God during these challenging times. As I was listening to the Pope’s homily, you and your families came to mind. Our family members who because of their jobs are risking their lives to save the lives of others. Those that are on the trenches. Be assured that we have been praying for them on a daily basis.READ MORE
Human beings are united in their suffering. When we find ourselves in a painful moment, our first reaction is “why me?” as if we are the only person on earth who ever encountered this challenge. Going through life with a “why me” attitude only finds us wallowing in the mire of selfpity and never seizing opportunities or graces. We walk in solidarity with every human being in the experience of suffering. Believing that the goal of life is the elimination or avoidance of suffering is simply an illusion that keeps us entrenched in a collective myth. This myth distorts us and limits us.
There are living witnesses among us showing how courage and determination can overcome any degree of hardship, pain, loss, or tragedy. Folks finding the normalcy of their lives suddenly torn asunder are faced with options: opportunity or despair, stay or leave. Jesus stands before us as the prime example of endurance and perseverance. He is the One who showed humility through both the triumphs of life (by learning to be humble) and the tragedies and injustices (by learning how to be obedient). To secular ears, this may be perceived as nonsense. But to those with the eyes of faith, they are pearls of great price.READ MORE
The focus this week in our series on the Mass is the GOSPEL. This word literally means Good News. Every week, try to find what is the good news in the GOSPEL reading. Ask yourself, “How does Jesus reveal His Father’s love in this reading”?
Today is Passion or Palm Sunday when we hear the longest GOSPEL of the liturgical year. The GOSPEL always brings us scenes from Jesus’ life.
During this time when we cannot gather for Mass, watch a televised Mass with your family. Dress as you would for Church. Stand, sit and kneel. Help your family pay special attention to today’s GOSPEL.
We stand at the GOSPEL like knights and damsels receiving orders from Christ our King. We make the sign of the cross on our forehead, lips, and heart while praying, “may the words of the Gospel be always on my mind, on my lips, and in my heart.” Notice at the end of the reading that the priest or deacon shows reverence to the book of the GOSPEL with a kiss.READ MORE
Dear OLPH Parishioners,
We greatly appreciate your prayers and the sacrifices you are doing in financially supporting our beloved parish. We are trying very hard to be good administrators with the current assets. We have been cutting expenses in all the departments and even making adjustments in some of our salaries. (The priests in the entire diocese have volunteered to cut their paychecks in order to be in solidarity with the faithful who are struggling financially.) For those of you struggling to put food on the table, remember that we have St. Vincent de Paul to help you. And finally, we have implemented a positive attitude of helping each other with small sacrifices.READ MORE