A Message from Father William

In this Sunday’s Gospel (Mark 4:35-41), Jesus Christ tells the Apostles to not be afraid, to have faith. In the midst of a stormy sea, Jesus commands the wind and the sea to be calm, giving His disciples a glimpse of His Divine love for them. In the words of Saint Paul (2 Corinthians 5:14-17), the disciples realize that the love of Jesus Christ compels them and that in Him, God the Son, they have become a new creation, greater than the laws of nature. Indeed, Jesus is telling the disciples and each of us to not be afraid, to open our life completely in word and deed to Him, to trust in Him – for He wants us to be witnesses of His love and mercy, to testify to the Truth that Jesus Christ is the Only Savior of the world! As we do so, by God’s grace, let us give such witness by offering prayers this Father’s Day weekend in thanksgiving to God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, for our fathers, living and deceased.

Pope Francis, the 265th successor to Saint Peter, has said that “faith is born of an encounter with God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Who calls us and reveals His love – a love that precedes us and upon which we can lean for security and for building our lives.” When we think of the word “faith,” we realize that it is not simply the acceptance of doctrine, but rather trust in God. Storms will always come, but trusting in God, the source of all peace, Who is more powerful than any tempest, will see us through.

When Saint John Paul II began his ministry as pope in 1978, his main words were “Do not be afraid! Open wide the doors for Christ!” Jesus Christ, God the Son, our Savior, and our truest Friend, has confronted all our fears, sufferings, miseries, and even death – and by His Passion, death, Resurrection and Ascension, He has conquered them because He loves us. He has saved us by His grace and encouraged and strengthened us with the awesome gifts of the Holy Spirit, prayer, His Church, the Scriptures, Sacraments, Commandments, communion of saints, and faith, hope and love – all ways that God conforms us to Himself and His love, helping us to proclaim Him in our words and deeds and to encourage others to be His disciples.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has reminded us that “if we let Christ enter fully into our lives, if we open ourselves totally to Him… we lose nothing, nothing, absolutely nothing of what makes life free, beautiful and great… Only in this friendship are the doors of life opened wide. Only in this friendship is the great potential of human existence truly revealed. Only in this friendship do we experience beauty and liberation. And so…, on the basis of long personal experience of life, I say to you… Do not be afraid of Christ! He takes nothing away, and He gives you everything. When we give ourselves to Him, we receive a hundredfold in return. Yes, open, open wide the doors to Christ – and you will find True Life. Amen.”

With peace and prayers in Christ,
Fr. William