August 27, 2017
Dear People of God,
Today we celebrate the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time. The Peter that proclaimed Jesus last week as the “Christ, the Son of the living God,“ is the same Peter we hear in today’s Gospel not liking that the Christ is headed for suffering and death in Jerusalem at the hands of the elders, chief priests and the scribes. “God Forbid, Lord!” Jesus is telling Peter and the other Apostles that His destiny and the plan of God is not what they expect, but it will end in glory. How often have we asked or heard others ask, “Why do bad things happen to me, those I love, to good people in our world?” All of us prefer a life free from suffering, sadness, or hardship. But every life does involve hardship. A good friend of mine wears a great T-shirt, “It is what it is.” (Guess who gave it to her?) Jesus proclaims that suffering, pain, and evil will not have the last word: the Son of Man will come in His Father’s glory. We will win if we take up our cross, accept our afflictions and troubles and find God right there in our midst. St. Paul’s advice to the Romans is also for us: Be transformed by deepening your relationship with God every day and conform your ways to God’s way. Then “discern what is the will of God, what is good, pleasing and perfect.” There we discover God’s presence even in the most challenging circumstance and courage to take up our cross.
This weekend is also our nation’s “Labor Day” holiday. We pause and give thanks for the blessings of labor where we are privileged to use our gifts and talents to benefit others. We pray for all who are currently unemployed and seeking meaningful work to provide for themselves and their families, invoking the intercession of St. Joseph, the worker. As a family of faith, we will celebrate “Mass on the Grass at 9:00am” on McMahon Field (weather permitting). As we did for the 4th of July, please bring a lawn chair. A worship aid will be provided.
Many noticed last weekend that the lighting in the Church changed. When I arrived at St. Luke’s I thought that the Church seemed dim (and kind of gloomy). I learned from several parishioners and Amir, our maintenance man, that Fr. John-Paul had tried new LED bulbs, but it didn’t make Church much brighter, just more energy efficient and economical. We are experimenting with a higher wattage daylight LED and still trying to find the best balance that we can achieve in a church of this size! We have already replaced all the flood lights in the chandeliers; working on the internal lights in each chandelier; and we hope to replace the bulbs in the top of the sanctuary which have been out for a while. I hope this helps us to better see our worship materials and brighten our beautiful Church. Please be patient with this process…it is not as easy as it seems.
Finally today, just another plea to keep praying for a very special intention. I am asking your help in this endeavor. As I stated last week. I am unable to tell you what it is, but hope to reveal it in time. I believe that if we all pray together for this, God will hear us. Thank you so very much.
God Bless! Have a great week!
Remember those 3 Hail Marys (Fr. Pete)