Sunday, March 3, 2024
The Lord be with you!
As Lent progresses, it is great that we have so many spiritual helps for various groups and individuals to help get closer to the Lord. The Women’s Retreat led by a religious sister, a Daughter of Saint Paul, has happened this weekend. The “Into the Breach” Men’s group meets again Sunday night at Saint John’s (they are meeting every second week, alternating between Saint John’s and Saint Joseph’s), and we have the local area Catholic young adult group, Rooted267, meeting here on this Saturday night. Then there is the Lenten study on the Jewish Roots of Holy Week…absolutely fascinating stuff…following the Tuesday morning Mass and repeated after the Thursday evening Holy Hour. Not to mention that Mass is available everyday and confessions are available multiple times every week (and check out Saint Joseph the Worker Shrine in Lowell, for even more times and if you are reluctant to go to Father Kwang or me…but don’t be afraid to come to us either), and the churches are open for long hours so that you can drop in and spend a little time with the Lord every day.
All of these are “extras” to help us grow from our basic practice of the Faith, to an ever greater love for God and for all that God gives us, and a greater reverence and attentiveness to all His goodness. We are to become more and more like Jesus, of Whom it was prophesied in the Psalms and demonstrated in today’s Gospel reading, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” Is the fire of Faith growing within you, especially now, especially in this Lenten season? What are you doing to fuel it? It is very easy to sit back, relax, and let the flame die without noticing the slow change. Be attentive to any diminishment like that happening in your life!
I had better mention the annual Catholic Appeal in case you are reading this online and not present in the Church this weekend. This weekend is announcement weekend, and next weekend is commitment weekend. There are various ways in which we are turning around things in the parishes since the pandemic, and one of these has been the great improvement in the annual Catholic Appeal. Thank you all for bringing this about. I also received letters from Cardinal Seán to thank you for the getting us there. I should add that our two parishes became significant beneficiaries of the Catholic Appeal during the past year as well, not just from all the back-office-type help we receive from the Archdiocese, but in a special way by receiving a newly ordained permanent deacon, Deacon Jason Lampron, much of whose formation over four years was made possible by the donations of many people all across the Archdiocese to the Catholic Appeal. Your donation likewise will help not just us, but also many more brothers and sisters in Christ throughout our Archdiocese! Thank you for your attentiveness and support here!