Dear parishioners: Here's 2 different things to do as we look forward to the Holy Triduum this week. Bells. For the mass on Holy Thursday evening (starting at 7:30 pm) and also for the Easter Vigil this Saturday at 7:30 pm, you are invited to bring bells with you to ring at the start of the Gloria. Bring those bells and let us make a joyful noise unto the Lord!! Baskets. There is along standing tradition in many cultures to bring to church on Holy Saturday baskets of food to be blessed by the parish priest, which will then be used in your family Easter Sunday meal. This Palm Sunday weekend, at the entrances to the church, you will find a handout of a traditional Polish Easter basket that you can use as an example. Please note that what should be in basket are typical Easter foods of your own culture. The baskets can be simple or elaborately decorated. A special invitation also goes to our young ones to bring their Easter eggs and other Easter sweets to be blessed as well. You are invited to bring your baskets to the church on Holy Saturday, April 7th, from 1:00 - 1:30 pm, and Fr. Michael will joyfully bless your baskets.
today's reading are Jeremiah 20: 7-12 ; Psalm 18 and John 10: 31-42 The prophet Jeremiah in our 1st reading, with much concern, describes the machinations of those plotting to ruin him, as they were quite upset about truth of the prophecies God asked Jeremiah to share with the people and the rulers. 600 years later, Jesus could sigh and say to Jeremiah, "I know how you feel". Jesus determines His fate over by openly blaspheming - blaspheming that is in the minds of His opponents - by claiming to be truly one with God. Jesus fully implies that He is God's Son, who has come to save the world. His works are the Father's works. And as a result, He will be “lifted up,” meaning both crucified and glorified. He will be the ultimate revelation of God’s unconditional love for a sinful world. Today we have come to the point where "the board is set, and the pieces are beginning to move". The board is set for the great events of Holy Week. Come, let us worship.
today's other readings are Genesis 17: 3-9 and Psalm 105 The conflict continues. The conflict between between Jesus and his religious critics has reached a critical point. He had previously spoken openly and freely before about His intimate relationship with God the Father, and refers to Himself as I AM. Today, though, He goes further. At the conclusion of our passage, He says, "Very truly, I tell you, before Abraham was, I AM". His critics are stunned and enraged, Now He is claiming that He transcends history - that He existed even before Abraham, by referring to Himself as I AM - a title that God the Father only revealed hundreds of years after Abraham, when the Father spoke to Moses in the burning bush (Exodus 3). In reaction, His critics pick up stones so as to kill Him for blasphemy. In a few days we will enter Holy Week. That Holy Week is one in which we are once again presented with the truth of Jesus' being - that He is the Son of God and Son of Man, both divine and human. Just like the people of His time had to, the stories and events of Holy Week compel us to answer the question, "Who is Jesus for me?"
Join us at Nativity in the church for an opportunity to encounter Christ present in the Eucharist during Praise and Worship Adoration at 8:00pm this Friday. Come bring all your troubles and fears, all joys and accomplishments. Whatever it may be, lay it at His feet. Hosted by the Youth Ministry - all are welcome.
today's other readings are Daniel 3 for both the 1st reading and the canticle The opening saying from Jesus today, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth shall set you free", brings to mind a memory of a statement made by one of my Seminary professors, Fr Joachim Pillai, who said, "yes, the truth will set you free, but it also can get you into a whole lot of trouble". Fr. Pillai is right. The truth, especially speaking it or living it, can get you into trouble. For there are, and have been, many people who find the truth very inconvenient, especially those in power for whom the truth threatens their positions or status. Jesus spoke the truth. The Jewish authorities certainly were not happy to have it spoken to them. And we know the price He paid. St. Oscar Romero, the Archbishop of San Salvador in the country of El Salvador, spoke constantly of the truth of the suffering and the oppression of the poor of his country, paid in the ultimate price with his murder by the military of his country. In fact, every martyr of the Church paid that same price for living the truth of our faith. But the truth needs to be spoken and lived. For all who do so, live lives filled with a sense of purpose, a purpose that only God can provide. Let us pray that each one of us will live the truth of our Christian faith in all aspects of our lives.
today's other readings are Numbers 21: 4-9 and Psalm 102 An easy to overlook aspect of John's gospel is Jesus' frequent use of "I am". In our English speaking eyes, it makes sense that Jesus uses this term as it is the first person form of the verb "to be". But in the case above, Jesus isn't referring just to His earthly presence, but He is referring to the name God used in referring to Himself "I AM" in His appearance to Moses in the burning bush in Exodus 3. By referring to Himself as "I AM", Jesus infuriates His opponents who accuse Him of heresy. But there is another important phrase in today's gospel that requires comment: “When you have lifted up the Son of Man”, which links Him to two important Old Testament stories. One is today’s first reading from Numbers 21:4-9, an account of the attack of serpents in the desert on the people when they complain about lack of food and drink. Moses makes a bronze image of the serpent and lifts it up so that anyone who looks at it can be healed. By linking His reference to being lifted up with the saving image of the pole Moses creates, we gain insight into the purpose of the saving cross of Jesus Christ. Jesus also calls Himself the “Son of Man”. This title is taken from the Book of Daniel (7:14-14), which speaks of a mysterious figure, both human and divine, who comes on the clouds on the day of judgment. This title is one of the few that Jesus accepts, and is doing so fully embraces His humanity. But for St. John Jesus also is the perfect representative of humanity before God, the "Son of Man."
I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5 KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS COUNCIL # 12735 SURRENDER NOVENA March 28th to April 5, 2023 DAY MONTH DATE DAY TIME 1 MARCH 28th TUESDAY 7.30 p.m. After the 7.00 p.m. mass. 2 29th WEDNESDAY 7.30 p.m. After the 7.00 p.m. mass. 3 30th THURSDAY 10.00 a.m. After the 9.30 a.m. mass. 4 31st FRIDAY 10.00 a.m. After the 9.30 a.m. mass. 5 APRIL 1st SATURDAY 6.00 p.m. After the 5.00 p.m.. mass. 6 2nd SUNDAY 12.30 p.m. After the 11.30 a.m. mass. 7 3rd MONDAY 10.00 a.m. After the 9.30 a.m. mass. 8 4th TUESDAY 7.30 p.m. After the 7.00 p.m. mass. 9 5th WEDNESDAY 7.30 p.m. After the 7.00 p.m. mass.
today's other readings are Psalm 34 and John 7: 1-2, 10, 25-30 Our 1st reading today comes from the Book of Wisdom, which was written around 100 B.C., by an unknown member of the Jewish community living in Alexandria, Egypt. In this passage we read of a righteous person whose works and life are despised by the "ungodly", which would include all those in power who do all they can to ensure that their comfortable lives remain safe and undisturbed. They have plans for this righteous man - they will test him with insult and torture, put him on trial and condemn him to a shameful death. And they figure this will solve their problem. But as our author states, their plans will be exposed, and their wickedness will lead to their ruin, as God's goodness will have the final say. Of course the righteous person that comes to mind is Jesus Christ, who will be subjected to all of the above trials about 130 years after this book was written. This poignant reading is one of the countless prophecies and writings of the Old Testament which point to Our Saviour, and the contents is a wonderful lead up to our observance of Holy Week starting in the evening of Saturday, April 1st.
2023 Holy Week Schedule April 1 -9 All celebrations below with * beside it will be livestreamed – the link can be found on the home-page of www.myparish.org Passion (Palm) Sunday Masses At all masses you will receive a blessed palm cross as you enter the church. Saturday April 1st – 5:00 p.m.* Sunday April 2nd` – 9:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Monday, April 3rd – 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 4th – 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 5th – 7:00 p.m. Thursday, April 6th – 9:30 a.m. NO MASS Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper - April 6th, 7:30 pm * - followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until 11:00 p.m. Good Friday, April 7th 12 noon *- Solemn Good Friday Liturgy 3 p.m. - Solemn Good Friday Liturgy 7 p.m. - Youth Stations of the Cross Saturday, April 8th EASTER VIGIL MASS OF THE RESURRECTION April 8th 7:30 p.m. EASTER SUNDAY, April 9th: April 9th *9:00 a.m. & 11:30 A.M. Parish office is closed on Easter Monday, but mass will be held at 9:30 am.
today's other readings are Isaiah 49: 8-15 and Psalm 145 Our gospel passage is a continuation of yesterday's, with Jesus' dispute with the Jewish leaders developing. Their problem? His signs (miracles) done on the Sabbath, and much worse in their eyes, by His calling God His Father. And this will be a dispute that will only grow with time, culminating in His arrest, Passion and death. Jesus outlines many reasons for His actions in today's passage, but the one that grabs my attention is the last one: "I seek to do not my own will but the will of Him who sent me". Doing the will of the Father - that was His raison d'etre. Today we can ask ourselves - what is the fundamental motivation by what we say and do in our daily lives? Is it the will of God our Father?