From Our Pastor's Desk
From Our Pastor's Desk
Sunday, August 28th, 2022 – Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time C Readings: Sirach 3:17-18, 20, 28-29, Psalm 68 “God, in your goodness, you have made a home for the poor”, Hebrews 12:18-19, 22-24a, Luke 14:1, 7-14
“For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” The message of this week’s Gospel is clear. Jesus wants humility. He gives some examples of humility that leave no doubt of its importance. So, it is worth thinking about the sense of humility. True humility depends on our attitude and the recognition that God is the giver of all the good that we are. We have to do the best we can, not to win over others, but to develop our gifts. Our goal should not be to beat others, but to use the good we have to improve the world.
Humility is a Christian virtue. It is foundational to all the other virtues. It symbolizes lowliness and submission, but not passivity. It takes its root from the Latin word Humus, that is earth, which is beneath us. Applied to persons, it is first, to be reminded or to be conscious of our own human smallness in the face of God. And second, being conscious of your own worth and yet submitting yourself to others. Not because we are weak or timid, but because that is what God asks of us, and that is how Christ would act. There we are invited to “have among ourselves the same attitude that is also ours in Christ Jesus, who, though, was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient unto death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every know should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:6-11).
Humility is the opposite of pride and Proverbs 16:18 says “Pride goes before a disaster, and a haughty spirit before a fall”. Pride is the inordinate desire for one's own excellence. Humility is its opposite, because a humble person seeks his or her own excellence in a proper manner and degree.
My dear friends, humility produces countless fruits, and it is linked to all the other virtues (prudence, chastity, meekness, patience, brotherly and sisterly love, kindness). Let us find countless opportunities each day to live a life of humility. May the Lord bless us in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Fr. Paschal Chester, SVD
Sunday, August 21st, 2022 – Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time - Cycle C Readings: Isaiah 66:18-21, Psalm 117 “Go out to all the world and tell the Good News”, Hebrews 12:5-7, 11-13, Luke 13:22-30
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, we wish to welcome all our students, faculty and staff to the new academic year 2022-2023. The beginning of the new school year is an opportunity to ask God’s blessings on the school community in the coming year and to help prepare the hearts of students, parents, teachers and staff. We kindly ask all parishioners to help the students feel at home in our faith community. We begin our religious education this Sunday, and we wish to thank all our students and catechists for their desire to participate in sharing the faith and growing in it.
We live our faith through the profession of faith (the creed), the celebration of the Christian Mystery, Life in Christ, and Christian prayer. There is the need for us to better understand the faith we profess. When we profess the creed in the liturgy, we keep the principal truths of the faith alive in memory. In the celebration of the Christian Mystery, the proclamation of the Gospel finds its authentic response in the sacramental life, through which we experience and witness, in every moment of our existence, the saving power of the paschal mystery by which Christ accomplishes our redemption. Life in Christ recalls the ways through which we manifest our commitments to the faith we profess and celebrate, through our actions and ethical choices. We are called by the Lord Jesus to act in a way which befits our dignity as children of the Father in the love of the Holy Spirit.
May this year be a time to reaffirm, renew and deepen our faith. To do this we are invited to reflect on our faith in God. Devote time each day in reading the Word of God, because your faith will be strengthened by the power of the Word. In Roman 10:17 we read that “faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes from what is preached”. Devote time for your personal prayer. Constantly ask the Blessed Mother Mary to intercede for you and may we learn from her faith journey. Ask pardon from God in the sacrament of reconciliation. May the Lord fill us with his blessing and lead us along the right path.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Fr. Paschal Chester, SVD
Sunday, August 7th, 2022 – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Cycle C Readings: Wisdom 18:6-9, Psalm 33 “Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own”, Hebrews 11:1-2, 8- 19, Luke 12:32-48
My dear brothers and sisters, The Synod on Synodality is a two-year process of listening and dialogue which began with a solemn opening in Rome on October 9 and 10, 2021 with each individual diocese and church celebrating the following week on October 17. The synodal process will conclude in 2023. Pope Francis invites the entire Church to reflect on a theme that is decisive for its life and mission: “It is precisely this path of synodality which God expects of the Church of the third millennium.” This journey, which follows in the wake of the Church’s “renewal” proposed by the Second Vatican Council, is both a gift and a task: by journeying together and reflecting together on the journey that has been made, the Church will be able to learn through Her experience which processes can help Her to live communion, to achieve participation, to open Herself to mission. (From USCCB website)
The theme of the Synod: “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, and Mission”. It invites the whole church to question itself on synodality. Even though it's not a new concept in church history, synodality is a new term for most Catholics. Synodality denotes the particular style that qualifies the life and mission of the Church, expressing her nature as the People of God are journeying together and gathering in the assembly, summoned by the Lord Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit to proclaim the Gospel.
This Synod is intended as a Synodal Process to provide an opportunity for the entire People of God to discern together, how to move forward on the path towards being a more Synodal Church in the long-term. A basic question prompts and guides us: How does this journey together, allow the Church to proclaim the Gospel in accordance with the mission entrusted to Her; and what steps does the Spirit invite us to take in order to grow as a Synodal Church? The Theme: Communion, Participation and Mission. Communion:
The communion we share finds its deepest roots in the love and unity of the Trinity. Together, we are inspired by listening to the Word of God, through the living Tradition of the Church, and grounded in the sensus fidei that we share. We all have a role to play in discerning and living out God’s call for his people. Participation:
Participation is based on the fact that all the faithful are qualified and are called to serve one another through the gifts they have each received from the Holy Spirit in baptism. In a Synodal Church the whole community is called together to pray, listen, analyze, dialogue, discern and offer advice on making pastoral decisions which correspond as closely as possible to God’s will.
Our mission is to witness to the love of God in the midst of the whole human family. This Synodal Process has a deeply missionary dimension to it. It is intended to enable the Church to better witness to the Gospel, especially with those who live on the spiritual, social, economic, political, geographical, and existential peripheries of our world.
Bishop Wack invites each of our parishioners to prayerfully consider sharing your feedback in a six-question Synod Survey. Visit to participate. (https://ptdiocese.org/synod) to participate. The link can be found in the bulletin, on the parish Facebook page, and the parish WhatsApp group.
God bless you.
Fr. Paschal Chester, SVD