Dear Parish Family,
Two weeks ago, I presented five projects which are local needs that call for our immediate attention. With them, I called for a Capital Campaign to take care of the needs of our parish. Several of us began to pray for the success of this Capital Campaign. Allow me to share with you today a prayer which we wrote asking the Holy Spirit to guide us during this Capital Campaign.
Beloved Holy Spirit, Spirit of Justice and Wisdom,
thank you for the many blessings you have bestowed on our parish,
in particular, the gift of community and the gift of family life.
We, the families of St. Patrick Church,
Come to you asking for your guidance
as we care for the parish entrusted to us.
We acknowledge the sacrifices made by those before us,
and in turn, ask you to strengthen us
to be good stewards of St. Patrick Parish,
As we make our thoughtful response
to the St. Patrick Church Capital Campaign.
Enlighten us to make decisions and sacrifices
which will continue to make our parish
a welcoming place where we can joyfully
gather to pray, teach, learn, and glorify God.
Help us to see that our sacrifices will become
a spiritual blessing, not just for us,
but for those who will come after us.
We ask this through Christ, Our Lord.
I encourage you to continue to pray for the success of the Capital Campaign. I am looking forward to celebrating Holy Week with you.
God bless you all.
The Gospel of John invites us to reflect on life. Not only of earthly life, but also of eternal life. Several details that we can see here in this passage; For example, the great love that Jesus had for his friend Lazarus. As a human being, Jesus loved the people close to him. Jesus suffered from the loss of a loved one. This feeling demonstrates His human nature and divine nature. Many of us know what is to mourn the loss of a loved one.
The other detail that John presents to us is the power of Jesus. Jesus, as Son of God, has the power to raise up Lazarus his friend. With the miracle of the resurrection of Lazarus Jesus reveals his divine nature and invites us to believe. As we can appreciate in the gospel, many people, including Jews, came to believe in Jesus for the work of this miracle. John wants us to understand not only of the human nature of Jesus but also of his divine nature. Therefore, the central theme of the passage is life, earthly and divine.
We must ask ourselves, what is the attitude we should have regarding earthly life? And what should be our attitude toward eternal life? Is it right to despise one and desire the other? How should we understand these two forms of life? And especially how should we live the earthly life with regard to eternal life?
There are people who suffer greatly from the presence of sin in their lives. Without realizing that sin is part of being human. We are called to fight against sin and to live in grace. However, we can not fall into despair because of sin. We can not condemn ourselves, precisely because God is merciful.
This kind of rejection of the human nature does not present the loving and merciful Jesus. Jesus did not preach contempt for the earthly life. Nor did he preach contempt for eternal life. Jesus taught us through his words and his works the mystery of life. Human life is that biological reality that is presented with, as the capacity for eternity. We are called to live the earthly life with hope and desire for eternity.
God bless you. Father Lopez
Rev. Johnson Lopez
Father Lopez is Pastor of Saint Patrick Catholic Church in Rochelle, IL.