Pastor's Note - July 28, 2013

Even though it our custom at Lourdes to have summers that are more quiet than the rest of the year, this summer we have had lots of activities.   If you enter the church building from Sherbourne Street, you may have noticed the new plants and flowers.  Between ten to fifteen parishioners come every Monday evening, volunteering their time and talents in trying to organize and renovate our gardens.  I think it has been very successful!  I have found it a real pleasure and gift to be able to work and chat with parishioners in such an informal setting.  Nothing better than getting one’s hands dirty with others!  This sort of working together reinforces what we proclaim at the beginning of every Mass – “We come together as God’s family.”  In support of the new gardens, several other parishioners have also donated many plants, especially roses.  To all of those who have sought to serve our Community, on behalf of the parish, let me offer a heartfelt “Thank you.”  You may also have noticed that ceiling fans have been installed in our four halls.  We decided to add the ceiling fans in an effort to cool our halls, and were able to do so from funds raised through the June Bazaar.   With so much participation and generosity in our parish, we must thank each other and God.  We are truly blessed to live as “God’s family” here at Lourdes.

 

The contribution so many parishioners offer in terms of their time and talents reminds me of the persistent work and prayer the Lord speaks of in this week’s Gospel.  I often notice that each of us have certain difficulties or struggles, which seem to stay with is for a long time.  We try and make them less present.  We pray for the Lord to take them away.  And when it seems that neither worked too well, we may confess them with a sort of embarrassed frustration.   It’s as if we are admitting, “I did it again.”  When we have such a recurring struggle, it is so important for each of us to remember that the Lord remains present, that is, the Lord does not give-up on us.  Sometimes we may feel tempted to sort of “throw in the towel,” to give-up on ourselves.  And yet, the Lord says, “Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.  For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”  I have learned that I need to put my life into God’s loving hands, to trust in faith that I will be held and gently led within a horizon of love.  Things may not happen as fast as I want, but God’s will is realized through God’s schedule, not our own.  Frustrating?  For sure!  And yet, we are held by hands that know only love for each of us. Our identity and faith life is not discerned according to our struggles; rather it is given through the Father’s love.  God is eternally patient with us because God has faith in us.  Our task is then to know in our hearts the profound truth that God has faith is us, that God delights in each of us.  If God is patient with us, then so too should we be patient with each other and ourselves.   Our struggles, our temptations have already been nailed “to the Cross . . . [and] God [has] made you alive together with him.”  We are held in God’s hands, we are held by hands that know only love.   

God Bless & Take Care,

 

Fr. John


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