Leading up to Easter many of you made decisions to spend extra time in prayer, or to do acts of charity, fasting, and almsgiving to help you to grow in the holiness of the Lord. I encourage you to continue to make a special effort to practice your faith in ways that will help you to grow in the ways of the Risen Lord and to be of service to one another.
During the Easter Season the gospel readings at Mass focus on the resurrection accounts of how the disciples of Jesus encountered the Risen Lord. The Easter Season is also a time when the lectionary for Mass presents us with readings from the Acts of the Apostles that tell us of the lived experience of Jesus’ followers after his death and resurrection. We as church proclaim and reflect on the ways that the early church encountered the Risen Christ. We hear the accounts of how they were led by the Holy
Spirit to proclaim the gospel message to the world. May we reflect on how they began a community of faith that was formed by the Word of God, prayed and worshiped together, and reached out in service to one another, especially those in need. May our reflection on the lived faith experience of the early church help us to see more clearly how we are to follow the Risen Christ each day and proclaim His love to the world.
I encourage you at home to spend time during the Easter Season reading and praying about the appearances of the Risen Christ in the gospel and the accounts of the birth of the church in the Acts of the Apostles. Pray that the Holy Spirit may enlighten you as to ways you can live out your baptismal calling to help proclaim the love of the Risen Lord to the people you meet each day. Maybe you will hear God calling you to actively live your faith in new ways. Have you thought of helping at funeral Masses to comfort those who are mourning? Have you considered sharing your faith with the young by teaching children in the Faith Formation programs or youth ministry? Is God asking you to help with liturgies at church, by becoming a lector, or extraordinary minister of the Eucharist, or by sharing your music talents or helping to decorate our worship space, or arrange flowers? Is your talent in helping prepare dinners or in planning social events? As we journey through the Easter Season to Pentecost, be open in prayer to the Holy Spirit to reveal to you how you can share your faith in new ways. And step forward in boldness to help build up the Body of Christ as the first followers of Jesus did.
Special thanks to the musicians, and the various ministers who helped with the Holy Week services and the decorating of the churches for this holy season. Your commitment and willingness to share your talents is greatly appreciated. Happy Easter. to you and your families.
May God bless you, Father Bill