Dear Sisters and Brothers,
“This is the day the Lord has made... let us rejoice and be glad!” (Psalm 118:24) We sang these words with passionate faith last Sunday as we celebrated the Lord’s Resurrection, and rightly so, because on Easter Jesus did what we ourselves cannot do. Only God can make that day happen! The joy of that Easter day spills over into a week of feasting called the Octave of Easter (the 8 days), culminating in this Sunday’s celebration of the Octave Day, or the Second Sunday of Easter. From the earliest centuries of the Church, this first week of Easter has held special importance because the joy of Easter could not be contained or summed up in a single feast day. Pope John Paul II added the observance of “Divine Mercy” to this ancient feast in 2000, based on the writings of St. Faustina Kowalska, a Polish Nun who experienced visions from the Risen Jesus. Mercy is at the heart of the gospel message, especially in the joy of Easter.
Throughout the Easter season, we will read from the New Testament Acts of the Apostles, which give us a glimpse into the early Church from the perspective of Peter and Paul. The book of Acts is like the “social media” of the first century, as we hear about the Apostles’ travel, their preaching, their miracles, and even their struggles, disagreements, and imprisonments. Today we hear about the vitality of the Church in those days: “great numbers of men and women were added to them” and “many signs and wonders were done among the people.” For us, with the help of the RCIA Team, we rejoice this Easter as we welcomed two new members of the Church at the Easter Vigil, and three others celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation. Over the next few weeks, 62 children will receive the Eucharist for the first time during weekend Masses, and 27 young people will celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation on May 23. The “signs and wonders” performed in our midst are the daily acts of service, charity, pastoral care, and teaching that take place in our parish. Indeed, the Risen Lord continues to be manifest among us!
Once again, I am grateful for the dedicated work of so many parishioners and our staff during Lent and throughout Holy Week and the Sacred Triduum, that enabled our acts of service and charity and our worship so prayerful and inspiring. It takes a lot of planning and the work of many hands, and I continue to be moved by the dedication and the faith of our community in doing the Lord’s work day in and day out. It has been a joy and honor for me to serve as your pastor, and I give thanks for the abundant blessings in our parish.
We are looking for volunteers to help explain the Sunday readings to our youngest parishioners through Children's Liturgy of the Word (CLOW). Resources and training are provided. Please contact email@example.com for more information or to volunteer.
Finally, I’d like to bring back Donut Sundays to foster community and to meet parishioners since the pandemic shut us down two years ago. Please read this weekend’s bulletin for more information!
A reminder....although masking is now optional, I encourage all parishioners to use your best judgement about wearing a mask especially if you are not vaccinated or immunocompromised. Please use the hand sanitizers in the Narthex and when you enter the church at the Food Pantry entrance. As always, if you are not feeling well, have a fever or persistent cough, please stay home and watch our live-streamed Mass online.
As usual, we will continue to live-stream Mass (Mon—Thurs at 9:00am and Sunday at 9:30am) on the parish Facebook (link) and uploaded on YouTube (link), and our parish website, https://www.seaseton.org/Resources/Media. If you do not have Facebook but wish to watch our livestream, click here for instructions.