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Fr. Gerard’s Weekly Column: 3/31/24

Think of what is above, not of what is on earth.

HE IS RISEN! HE IS TRULY RISEN!

Today we relish this joy of Easter, thanking God for letting us share in this victory, for giving us this hope. But let’s not stop there. Christ’s resurrection is not just a nice idea; it is the power of eternal life at work in us. Why not do something for the eight weeks of the Easter season to make use of that power? Today let us make a commitment to not just enjoy Easter, let’s let it change our lives.

Almost every one of us made an effort to live Lent in a special way. Most likely we gave something up for Lent. That was a practical way to give the special graces that God sends during Lent some room to work in our souls. So, if we gave something up as a way to help us live the penitential season of Lent, why not take something up as a way to help us live the joyful season of Easter?  Why don’t we make an Easter resolution that will help us do that, that will help us keep in mind the eternal life in Christ that is waiting for us if we stay faithful to him?

Deciding what to take up for Easter might be more difficult than choosing a Lenten sacrifice. In the Second Reading, St Paul encouraged us to “think of what is above, not of what is on earth.” What kind of practice would be more heavenly than earthly? It could be something simple:

  • Invite a friend or family member to come to Mass on a Sunday and then a meal afterward, inviting them over for brunch or lunch.
  • Make the Sundays of Easter be joyful family game or movie nights.
  • Fridays of Lent were penitential, and we abstained from meat. Could the Fridays of Easter be days in dedicated to getting together with a friend or friends that we have been meaning to spend time with but we never get around to it.
  • As the days get warmer, commit to taking a long nature walk at least once a week, praying the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary as you do.

WELCOME – The joyful celebration of Easter is one of those times of year that we reflect upon the magnitude of faith expressed by many. All who join us today are welcome and I hope you all feel that way. God has called each person here today for a reason and we hope that in sharing Easter joy with us you may know His love for you. We hope that His love for each of us as individuals and families may be a source of encouragement to all of us who seek to belong more deeply to Christ and His church. We also express joy and welcome to those who enter the church this season through the Easter sacraments.

THANK YOU – I offer gratitude and thanks to the Lectors, Extraordinary Ministers, Ushers, Altar Servers, Musicians, Vocalists, Sacristans, and Parish Staff who have helped us to celebrate the liturgies of Holy Week so well. These holy days manifested so many gifts and generosity for which I am extremely grateful.

EASTER WEEK OF ADORATION – Throughout this first week of Easter, also called the Octave of Easter, our parish will be participating in a special week of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Beginning Monday March 31st through Friday April 5th from 10:00 am-8:00 pm, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament will take place in the Chapel of the Fr. Graham Center. Please try to stop in to pray and spend time with the resurrected Lord. I trust that these will be valuable days for the church here in Massapequa and the church lived in our families. Taking some time to join us for adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is another example of taking up something heavenly for Easter. We are still in need of volunteers to assure that the Blessed Sacrament is never left unattended. Please email Tom Griffin to sign up for an hour time slot ThomasG@srolchurch.org.

DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY – Next Sunday we celebrate the Lord’s mercy which flows from his sacred and resurrected heart. Please join us at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 7th for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Please see the ad elsewhere in today’s bulletin for more information about this feast day.

PARISH WEBPAGE – I am excited to announce that we have upgraded and updated our parish webpage. You may view it at https://stroseoflimaparish.org

Happy Easter!

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