Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
God is good! All the time! Father Figi and I would like to express our deepest gratitude for your touching expressions of support during our time of illness. We enjoyed many heart-warming messages, delicious meals (including wonderful chicken soup!), homemade cookies, and grocery store runs. It is such a blessing to be part of such a loving community. We will be offering prayers of thanksgiving for all of you, especially during our celebrations of the Holy Eucharist.
For me, times of extended illness provide unique gifts. As the body slows down its activity, God’s voice begins to emerge more clearly in the silence and solitude. Prayer becomes more continual, and I find myself lifting up the desires and concerns of our parish family members even more intentionally than usual. God is so good! Even in times of sickness, He strengthens our bonds of friendship and communion.
On Thursday, February 3rd at 6:30 pm, Queen of Peace will host one of our diocesan sessions as part of the worldwide synodal process. The Holy Father and our Bishop want to hear our voices as we respond to the needs of the Church and the Gospel call of Jesus. These sessions are described as listening and discerning moments. We will listen not only to one another but also to the voice of the Holy Spirit, whose subtle whisperings inspire us, especially when we are gathered together in the name of Jesus.
My desire is that every parishioner participate in this graced process. If you are not able to participate in person, please contact me at email@example.com. Our staff can provide the questions for your written responses, or you can meet with one of our Synodal Ambassadors to share your reflections personally.
God’s timing is amazing! In this weekend liturgy’s second reading, Saint Paul talks about the Church using the metaphor of the human body:
God placed the parts, each one of them, in the body as he intended. If they were all one part, where would the body be?
But as it is, there are many parts, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I do not need you, “nor again the head to the feet, “I do not need you.” The parts must have the same concern for one another. If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it; if one part is honored, all the parts share its joy.
Each and every member of our parish has a unique role to play in the design of God, and I believe with all my heart that receiving each person’s responses with love is part of God’s plan for the renewal of the Church. Courage, my friends! Let us move forward in faith!
Thanks again for your loving and tender support.
Peace and Joy in the Risen Christ,
Father Al, a loved sinner