Pastor’s Letter – Nov. 19, 2017: Much to be Thankful For
We were very happy last week to formally welcome 13 individuals into the RCIA process at the 9AM Mass. Four will be journeying as catechumens to the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist and nine who have already been baptized will be journeying to full communion in the Catholic faith through Confirmation and Eucharist. This group of pilgrims coming into the faith will need our prayers, support and example as they journey to the Easter Vigil. Their names and pictures will be posted so you can remember to pray for them.
This weekend we are excited to launch FORMED in our parish. FORMED is a content-rich, Catholic based web platform that provides audio, visual and printed materials. It is like going into a Catholic library online. I want to thank John Peters for spearheading this effort. John will be making a presentation at all the Massed with information on how to access the website. I think FORMED will be great resource for those who want to learn more about the faith and grow spiritually.
We were happy to receive a letter from the Archbishop giving us permission to move ahead with our Altar and Ambo project. I met with Fr. Jim Johnson, who is a liturgical consultant for the Archbishop, and he had some great ideas which I will take to the committee helping with the design. Parishioner Sonny Tremoulet, who is an engineer and master craftsman, has generously offered to the engineering and building of the Altar and Ambo. I would also like to recognize and thank Jim Pinsoneault and Gregg Schuler who designed and built the new kneelers that are in front of the St. Joseph altar and Our Lady’s icon. It is great to have such talent in our parish.
I want to go back to the theme of my homily last week. I talked about our lives being a book. Each day is a page; the past is already written, the future has blank pages yet to be written. Though life has many constraints and limitations we are nonetheless somewhat responsible for what is written on each page. We ask for God’s forgiveness, mercy and healing for what we are not proud of in the past. I talked about filling up the remaining empty pages with the oil of virtue and the honey of love. The virtues are seven: chastity, temperance, kindness, charity, diligence, patience and humility.
Life is shorter than we think. Quoting from a homily written in the 2nd century, “while still in this world, we must wholeheartedly repent of sins committed in the body and make it possible for the Lord to save us while there is still time. When we have left this world, we shall no longer be able to repent and confess our sins. We must do the will of the Father, keep our bodies pure, and observe the commandments of the Lord, for this is the way to obtain eternal life.”
And finally, Thanksgiving is upon us. We have so much to be thankful for. The Eucharist is our greatest expression of gratitude, it is our offering and sacrifice united to Christ and to the Father. It is from the Father that all good things flow. You are invited to come to the Edmonds Center for the Arts this Wednesday at 7PM as Edmonds Churches present One Voice. It is being put on by a group of local pastors of which I am a part. It will be a time of Thanksgiving and worship. And join us here for a special Thanksgiving Mass at 9AM on Thanksgiving day. For the Thanksgiving Mass please bring food donations which will be received by ushers and youth, and given to our St. Vincent de Paul Society. Happy Thanksgiving to all!