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“The Parish is where the Church lives. Parishes are communities of faith, of action and of hope. They are where the Gospel is proclaimed and celebrated, where believers are formed and sent to renew the earth. Parishes are the place where God’s people meet Jesus in word and sacrament and come in touch with the source of the church’s life.”
— American Bishop’s Pastoral Letter, 1993
(1 Corinthians 1:10-13,17) It is well known that Christians have abortions at about the same rate as non-Christians. Unfortunately it is rare that someone contemplating an abortion comes to me before the fact. It is only years later, if at all, that the aborted child’s mother, almost always the mother, comes seeking healing. The cases […]
The Season of Easter: Happy Easter. This is greeting not just for today, but for the next seven weeks. This is the longest season of the Church Year. I know, Lent seems longer, but perhaps this is because Easter is a more inherently joyful season, and as they say, “time flies when you’re having fun!” Make sure that this is a joyful season for yourself and for your family, and make sure that it is joyful for the right reasons. We celebrate the fact that we have entered into a new life, full of promise for new life to come. Certainly there will be moments of sadness in this life, even in the season of Easter itself, but the joy of knowing that nothing is to end in death, in fact that everything good is not to end at all but to continue in everlasting life, makes everything transitory and inconsequential except the joy itself.
Readings for next week: Acts 2:42-47; 1 Peter 1:3-9; John 20:19-31
Reflection: When a Christian dies, “life is changed, not ended”. Even though we are no longer able to touch, we continue to love them, and they continue to love us. The lives of Jesus and his disciples were changed through the experience of death and resurrection. They continued in communion and love with each other, and yet there was a sense in which the torch had been passed. No longer was an external Jesus leading the disciples. Now it was Christ guiding them from within their hearts and souls. The change wasn’t easy. The disciples had been used to following Jesus. Now they felt lost without him. As they began to recognize Christ present in their midst, however, their fears began to fade. They found themselves following him even more closely than they did when he walked among them.
1. Reflect on things and events that have caused you to doubt God’s goodness.
2. Consider ways that this year’s celebration of Easter has brought you new life.
Prayer: Jesus, we praise you for leading us once again into the joy of new life. Help us to bear the changes that new life brings. Lead us gently, that we may follow more closely than we’ve ever done before.