Last month, we were reacting to the pass. Today, I blew a tire! That’s a hockey expression. “Blow a tire” is when a player falls to the ice for no apparent reason other than losing their footing. A few weeks ago I was skating on a parishioner’s outdoor rink and it was not so much that I blew a tire, but that there was a rock or something on the ice, yeah – something like that.
How does “blow a tire” apply to us when we are talking about the Church’s mission? Thank you again for all of you who donate to the mission – via your gifts, talents, and treasures. Thank you to each and everyone who donates to our parishes and programs! Last month we spoke and presented the Annual Report to all our parishioners! Numbers inform us, but stories truly do inspire us. I continue to be overwhelmed by joy in seeing the Holy Spirit active in our brothers and sisters, in our families and parishes.
The Synod process has begun officially for our parishes, and there is a new parish survey available which will help our conversation. Thank you to those who have already submitted a response. Your responses will help both our Pastoral & Financial Councils with important decisions this year.
For your information, there are now 33 families enrolled in our First Communion program. Each week families follow the recommendations of our Sacramental Prep team which now uses many of the resources provided by Formed. There is also one family enrolled in the RCIA program – a mother, and her three children. The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is the way that a non-baptized person is brought into full communion with the Catholic Church. I know that there is an overwhelming amount of resources out there and that it might be hard to know where to start. But if you have any questions, please reach out to me, and our team, and let’s begin the journey together.
Finally, the holy season of Lent has begun. Just as hockey is a team sport, so is the parish family! I look forward to walking this 40-day pilgrimage with all of you, indeed I cannot do it alone.
The next forty days invite us to know God better in our Lord Jesus Christ, to grow in our love for Him, and to follow Him as disciples on the Way of the Cross. Deacon John and I have started preparing a new Spiritual Campaign – following last month’s Financial Campaign -, a new Lenten Preaching series that I hope will help us know, love, and follow God.
Lent is a time for us to grow in faith by giving something up, or taking something on. 7 Ways To Have A Good Lent is giving me new ideas for myself too. I recently started fasting from social media, especially Facebook and Instagram! I already blew a tire though.
The three main pillars of Lent continue to be prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Lent has two main purposes: it recalls or prepares for Baptism, and emphasizes a spirit of penance. Through forty days of closer attention to God’s Word and of more fervent prayer, believers are prepared to celebrate the Paschal Mystery – Passion, Death, and the Resurrection of the Lord, “My Sweet Lord”.
Oftentimes, we blow a tire during Lent. This Lent, do your best. We continue to struggle with the bad in order to do the good, to grow in holiness – through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. “But when you fail, realize that even those who can be considered righteous fall seven times daily” (Prov. 24:16). Let your failure be a lesson in humility that drives you back to the grace of God flowing from the pierced heart of Jesus—for that is the true heart of Lent. Let us continue praying for one another. Peace.