Dear Parishioners: Mother Nature was kind to us for last Saturday’s celebration of First Communion. No rain showers to dampen the day. The sixty-five children were well prepared and eager to receive the Eucharistic Lord for the very first time. The Church was decorated beautifully, the music was superb, the children angelic and the First Communion Masses truly a celebration of faith, hope and love. I offer thanks to all who helped to make the day so meaningful and beautiful especially our First Communion Class teachers, aides and volunteers. Also, we thank the parents and families of these children for bringing them to the Altar of God to receive Jesus Christ sacramentally for the first of many times.
These First Communicants are the future of our parish and Church, so please continue to pray for them. Pray that they and their families might continue to stay close to Christ and His Church. We hope that they might always find the meaning and direction in their lives by nourishing and strengthening themselves on the Sacraments. I recall the words that Pope Emeritus Benedict spoke to a First Communion Class meeting with him.
He said: “The Mass centers life. We live amid so many things. And the people who do not go to church, do not know that it is precisely Jesus they lack. But they feel that something is missing in their lives. If God is absent from my life, if Jesus is absent from my life, a guide, an essential friend is missing, even an important joy for life, the strength to grow as a man, to overcome my vices and mature as a human being. With the passing of the weeks and years, we feel more and more keenly the absence of God, the absence of Jesus. It is a fundamental and destructive incompleteness. I could easily speak of countries where atheism has prevailed for years: how souls are destroyed, but also the earth. In this way we can see that it is important, and I would say fundamental, to be nourished by Jesus in Communion. It is he who gives us enlightenment, offers us guidance for our lives, a guidance that we need.”
The Church and grounds are looking good and I thank our hard working OLM Maintenance Staff of Paul Anderson, Jeff Franzone and Dave Belanger for getting everything ready for First Communion Day. They worked in the rain and cold to ensure everything was clean and neat for this special day for our parish. If you see them around be sure to thank them for all their hard work for our parish. The weather this past week cooperated so they could continue their work on the grounds at the Franciscan and Mercy Convents. Trees were cut down and some shrubs are to be removed. New plantings and flowers to be planted around the convents. Our good Sisters are excited about this project so keep an eye out in the coming weeks.
Today we celebrate the great Solemnity of Pentecost which celebrates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Church fifty days after Easter. In the Acts of the Apostles, the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles and the Blessed Virgin Mary. They were able to speak their native Galilean dialect but were understood by people of many different languages and nations. It is considered as the birthday of the Church because from that point on the Apostles carried the Good News of Christ to the whole world. Pentecost is probably one of the most important days on the Church calendar, but it often gets overlooked by Catholics. The same Holy Spirit who filled the apostles on Pentecost comes down upon our Church of OLM. We call upon the Holy Spirit to fill us with tongues of fire, so that with passion, love and great courage, we might bring the Gospel out to our world which so desperately needs to embrace it.
Come, Holy Spirit, Fill the Hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love! Don’t forget our OLM May Devotions every Monday night at 7:00pm! Try it, you might like it! Prayerful congratulations to our First Communion Class! Happy Pentecost! Be well. Do Good. God Bless. Go Sox!