March 13, 2016
My Dear Brothers and Sisters of San Felipe,
There is a truly wonderful song that we did in many other churches where I have served called, “All Are Welcome.” In this song one of the verses talks about the desire, prayer and dream to, “Let us build a church where God can dwell and all can safely live. . . .” This idea of being truly welcoming and a place that is Godly where all feel safe is something that makes my heart fill with joy.
In that same idea, this weekend we welcome our NEW Archbishop John Charles Wester as he welcomes me and installs me as the new pastor here at San Felipe de Neri. It is not only an honor to be installed as your pastor BUT, it’s equally exciting to be hosting Archbishop Wester for his first official visit to this holy, historic and venerable church. I know you have prayed for him and I will promise we will continue praying for him ow and in the future.
The gospel for this 5
th Sunday of Lent in the cycle “A” readings is especially for the communities where The Elect of God (those preparing for Easter Sacraments at the Easter Vigil – like us). This story is also about hospitality, welcome AND God’s miraculous life-giving promises at work. We hear about, “The raising of Lazarus,” on this Sunday. This last installment of special “Scrutiny” readings is a mere precursor of the Pascal Mystery (life, death and resurrection of Jesus). This is about the blessed time of the Easter miracles which we will be re-living in the next weeks. This story helps us prepare for the resurrection of not only Jesus but that reality we all hope and pray to know one day.
Perhaps this week, we can spend some time praying for all of our loved ones we have turned over to God in these last days, months and years. We trust that the promises God has made to us are not just empty words. Rather, we believe the reality of God’s love for us is something we will know.
May God bless us today and always!