Pastor’s Letter: March 27

Pastor’s Letter: March 27

Pastor’s Letter: March 27

25 Mar 2022 | Posted by: chadmin

The March 27 bulletin is available online.

Dear friend,

This Sunday is Laetare Sunday. The Latin word “laetare” means rejoice. The entrance antiphon for the Mass this Sunday is “Laetare Jerusalem” from the Prophet Isaiah. This is a call to celebrate and rejoice over the love God has for His people. For the liturgy this weekend, the Church allows more festivity than during the rest of Lent. Flowers may be used on the Altar and the color rose can be worn for the priest vestment. This Sunday marks the middle point of the Lenten Season. It is an opportunity for us to reflect on how the season has progressed and to ponder ways to grow closer to Christ.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is truly underutilized in our church. While I do think our parish makes fairly good use of the sacrament, we could do better. One of the 5 precepts of the Catholic Church is every Catholic should receive the Sacrament once per year. As a priest of 19 years, I can attest to the great healing aspect of confession for my own life and the lives of our Catholic faithful. I think some don’t receive the sacrament simply because they don’t realize the great freedom Jesus Christ desires to offer them in forgiveness. There are so many components to receiving forgiveness in the Sacrament. Through God’s action and the ministry of the Church, we are given certitude of our forgiveness. There is a true psychological freedom that comes when we speak our faults, weaknesses, sins, and hurts in the presence of a Church’s minister in a strictly confidential conversation. I have witnessed so many miracles of spiritual, mental, psychological and even physical healings by fully trusting in the power of Jesus Christ’s willingness to set one free in Confession. I cannot overemphasize the good of this sacrament to the health of Christians. Like most things in life, we get out of Confession what we put into the Sacrament. If you haven’t been in years, I know that once you get through the anxiety of going to actually experiencing the Sacrament, you will feel your faith journey rejuvenated. I think we all agree, it’s healthy to have some anxiety about speaking our sins and faults; but, Jesus truly desires to set us free. Please do your best to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation during Lent. We offer Confession Monday through Friday at 5pm during Lent. Some additional times will be offered during Holy Week. I am always willing to schedule a meeting in the office or church confessional for those that can’t make the regular confession times.

This weekend we hear the familiar parable of the prodigal son. The story has three main characters: the father, the older son, and the younger son. With all that takes place in this story, the passage centralizes on the forgiveness of the father. We too are invited to be agents of forgiveness. This yearly Lenten challenge is one of the most difficult aspects of the spiritual life. There is a reason Jesus talks about forgiveness so much. We all need to be forgiven and forgiving others is a great challenge. As we are called to rejoice in the halfway point of Lent this weekend, the Church clearly invites us to reflect on the power, meaning, and necessity of seeking and offering forgiveness before Easter. May the Lord help us to pursue forgiveness with Him and anyone in our lives that needs reconciliation.

God bless,

Father David