Week of March 17, 2013

“Remember not the events of the past, the things of long ago consider not; see, I am doing something new! Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?” (Is. 43: 18-19)

As I write this the Cardinals are in conclave, electing a new pope for our church. There is much
speculation about who will be the next pope with no clear front runner. What are the needs of our church today that this new pope will be facing? One thing that I hear over and over is the need for the pope to deal in a better way with the problem of child sex abuse in our church. He needs to deal with bishops who have not dealt with this problem in a way that protects our children. Others think he needs to focus on evangelization. Too many people are leaving our church and we need to find ways to reach out to them. There are some who think we need to go back to the way things were, back before Vatican II.

Isaiah’s words keep resounding, “see, I am doing something new! Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?” How will God be doing something new in our church? In his reflection on today’s gospel Fr. Karban says, “Throughout scripture, God constantly leads God’s people down
uncharted paths, asking them to open doors that have never been opened before.” (Celebration)

We are a church rich in tradition and many of those traditions define who we are. I think especially of the Eucharist. It is the source and summit of who we are. But one of the traditions of our church is change.

Throughout our history our church has changed. It is something Pope John XXIII called us to when he called the Second Vatican Council.

Today can we perceive how God is doing something new in our church? I must confess sometimes it is hard for me to perceive, but scripture reminds me that faith is a journey of discovery. I try to be mindful of our rich past and open to how God works through the new.

If you haven’t celebrated the Sacrament of Reconciliation yet this Lent, there are a couple of opportunities available this week. Our Lady of the Presentation Parish has their communal celebration this Sunday, March 17th at 7:00 p.m. St. Robert Parish has theirs Wednesday, March 20th at 7:00 p.m. On Saturday afternoon I am in the confessional from 4:00 – 4:30. I encourage you to celebrate this sacrament sometime this Lenten Season.

A reminder: Holy Week is coming soon. During this week there will not be meetings as usual. Let this week be an opportunity to enter into the story of our salvation. Take time to pray this week. Come celebrate the three holy days – Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil.

Thanks to everyone who has returned your pledge card.

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