04/06/14 Pastor’s Message

April 14th, 2014 by helen in Pastors Message Archive 2014

From Fr. Dennis’ Desk

Confronting Death:Our Victory is Assured

I recently received a telephone call from a parishioner from a previous parish whom I knew years ago.  She was tearful, and told me that a member of her family was near death and had taken a turn for the worse.  She asked me if I would do the funeral, which would happen soon.  I was taken aback, because I did not realize that he was so near death.  I knew he was ill, but not terminal.

The reason I bring this up is because as Catholic Christians, we have to confront death often.  I do not mean to be morbid, but like the sisters Martha and Mary grieving their brother Lazarus, we all face it at one time or another.  Jesus was a dear friend of Lazarus, and He wept at his death.  But Jesus knew something that the others did not:  His saving Death would destroy the power of death forever.  Lazarus is freed from death, and Jesus wins victory for us.

Lent is about preparing for our unity with Christ in His death so as to share fully in His Resurrection.  The prayers and penitential practices are not frivolous, but they help us to prepare for the Triduum (three days – Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday) and Easter.  At the beginning of Lent, on Ash Wednesday, we received the ashes:  “Remember you are dust and unto dust you shall return.”

Our victory is assured by Jesus’ victory over death!  On this weekend, the Fifth Sunday of Lent, we can offer up all of our prayers and energy as we face the death of loved ones.  No one alive is immune, but Jesus Christ gives us the strength we need to carry on.

Today as we hear Jesus scream “LAZARUS, COME OUT!”, we know He is calling him from death to life.

“UNTIE HIM, AND LET HIM GO FREE!!!!”  He says the same to us.

United in the Passion of Christ,

Fr. Dennis J. Vincenzo

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