Pastor’s Message 12/11/2016

March 8th, 2017 by Donna in Pastor Message Archive 2016

From the Desk of Father Dennis

Saint John of the Cross

Priest and Doctor, and our Church’s Patron Saint – Feast Day: December 14

John was born into poverty and want. His father died when he was one, and his mother was forced to put him into an orphanage so that he would be educated. After a series of unsuccessful apprenticeships, John found his place working in a hospital for those suffering from venereal diseases. The head of the hospital, impressed by his intelligence and warmth, offered to educate John so that he could become the hospital’s chaplain. Halfway through his studies, John went to the contemplative Carmelites.
Shortly after ordination, John met Teresa of Avila, who was on fire with reform. He helped her found the Discalced Carmelite branch for men. Four years later, John was abducted by his Carmelite brothers who were determined to stop the reform. They placed John in a dark cell, where he suffered hunger, solitude, vermin, and regular floggings for eight and a half months. At last John escaped and arrived, half-dead, at the door of the nearby Discalced Carmelite convent. The nuns took him in and nursed him. He began to recite the poems he had written in his prison and committed to memory. These became the basis of his Dark Night of the Soul. Later, he composed the Ascent of Mount Carmel, The Spiritual Canticle, and O Flame of Living Love.
John advocated detachment from all things. “God does not fit in an occupied heart,” he said.
Father in heaven, through the intercession of Saint John of the Cross,
grant me the strength to let go of everything that stands between me and You.

In the Peace of Christ,
Reverend Dennis J. Vincenzo

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