Last week in our continuing series on the parts of the Mass we highlighted the INTERCESSION which unites the three states of the Church in Heaven, on Earth and in Purgatory together.READ MORE
A single mother who has a child with special needs works two jobs and sacrifices much of her own pleasures in order to be available for her son. Being the best mother possible is important to her and brings her joy. We are willing to make great and often heroic sacrifices for those people and things that matter most to us. Unless there is something of obvious importance to us in our immediate path, we can easily approach life in a more haphazard and chaotic way. We jump from one thing to another, responding to whatever it is that is competing for our attention at that moment. When everything is important, nothing is important.READ MORE
Grace and sin, belief and unbelief, good and evil all exist together. While we wrestle with these two dimensions of reality inwardly, they are also witnessed in the actions and words of others. Many, all too often, beat themselves up because of their sin. We are also all too quick to pass judgment on others whom we perceive to be in error and walking down a wrong path. God does not make rash judgments, nor should we. Patience is the order of the day as is an understanding that God is ultimately the caller of the shots.
Our faith tells us that while God allows the wheat and the weeds to coexist, the wheat will always triumph. As long as we can cultivate even a little faith and a small measure of desire for God, He can produce abundant blessings and good things. Even when the weeds seem to have triumphed, there still may be a small measure of faith remaining that can be cultivated and grown. It doesn’t take much! Unless a person totally allows the weeds to reign, there is always to be found at least a small measure of faith, good, light, and love. With even this small portion, God can produce abundant growth.READ MORE
We continue our series on the parts of the Mass. Last week we considered the OBLATION or OFFERING in which the priest offers the Body of Christ to God the Father as a living sacrifice, mystery of Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection.
Next comes the INTERCESSION. Let’s not confuse it with the intercessions we pray during the PRAYERS OF THE FAITHFUL which we discussed several weeks back. This INTERCESSION is made by the priest who represents Christ at the altar. The INTERCESSION unites the three states of the Church together: The Church Triumphant or those already in Heaven, the Church Militant, those of us still fighting our spiritual battles here on earth, and the Church Suffering, those souls who are being purged from all sin in order to be purified for Heaven.
You will hear the priest pray for the pope and bishops, the baptized, and the souls in purgatory. While he prays, we remember all those people we want to offer to God including loved ones who have died.READ MORE
Using the best seeds doesn’t always guarantee the best plants. An older Italian gentleman straight from Italy gave me these amazing tomato seeds that he claimed produced the best tomatoes ever grown. Without doubt, the fruit he shared with me was a testament to that fact. These tomatoes were amazing! I couldn’t wait until the next growing season to plant these seeds and harvest my own tomatoes. The whole experiment ended up a failure. I did everything the gentleman said, but my fruit didn’t even come close. What happened? At first I was perplexed, then some years later the light dawned. The problem wasn’t the seeds, it was the soil!
You cannot sow seeds in any old place and in a haphazard way and expect them to be at their best. It doesn’t work that way. Planting the seeds is the easiest part. Preparing the soil is the challenge. Tilling, mulching, enriching, and building up the nutrients are all required for good fruit. Then after the seeds are planted, more care is required in order to maintain that healthy, nutrient rich environment for those seeds to sprout, grow, and flourish. God happily sows the seeds of his Word. What do we do with them?READ MORE
After THE MEMORIAL ACCLAMATION where we lovingly remember the mystery of Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection comes the OBLATION also known as the OFFERING.
During the OBLATION, the priest offers the Body of Christ to God the Father as a living sacrifice. Remember the Body of Christ is both the Eucharist and us.
The OBLATION also brings to mind all the Saints already united with Christ in Heaven.
Our part is to offer our whole life, our joys and sorrows, tears and laughter, work and play, worries and gratitude, fears and trials to our Heavenly Father. We offer everything we have and are as a living sacrifice remembering that we are the Body of Christ.
We also thank the saints in Heaven who are praying for us.READ MORE
We continue our series on the parts of the Mass. After THE INSTITUTIONAL NARRATIVE which we learned last week is the high point of the Mass, comes THE MEMORIAL ACCLAMATION.
The priest introduces it with these words, “the Mystery of Faith”. Sometimes he speaks the words. Other times he chants the words in our language and we sing our response. At our parish, during Advent and Lent the priest may chant the introduction to MEMORIAL ACCLAMATION in the language of the Church, which is Latin: “Mysterium fide” Then we respond in Latin, “Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine,et tuam resurrectionem confitemur, donec venias.”READ MORE
May the good Lord find you with peace.
This second part of my letter has to do with the spiritual life of the parish. After being here for a year, I am a witness to the faith of all of you. Your respectful participation in Holy Mass is admirable. I do not want to pass this opportunity to thank all our volunteers, lectors, EM’s, greeters, and everyone else who are directly involved in the Mass. Also, we would like to thank all our different parish groups who have been the living soul of the parish. In these difficult times, we pray for all our parishioners who have health difficulties and for our donors who help us to sustain our parish. It is my hope that one day we will get back together.READ MORE