Peter said, “I have neither silver nor gold, but what I do have I give you:
in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean, rise and walk.” Acts 3:6
This passage from the Acts of the Apostles came to me as I am praying for you and the Parishes entrusted to me by the Lord. Peter and John were moved by the cripple man begging at the temple’s gate.
We have been through a lot this year! We still ask for a cure and protection for those suffering from Covid19, praying for doctors and nurses and all caregivers, praying for our families and those who have experienced the loss of loved ones this year. We are praying for our country, for unity and fidelity to our foundational principals. We pray for our Catholic Church and the healing we need to move forward to a promising future.
I believe that our Lord is attentive to our prayers; but now that time of the year has arrived when we not only ask for favors and graces but we also give THANKS.
Pope Francis said during his visit to the United States in 2015:
“Joy springs from a grateful heart. Truly, we have received much, so many graces, so many blessings, and we rejoice in this… A grateful heart is spontaneously impelled to serve the Lord and to find expression in a life of service. Once we come to realize how much God has given us, a life of self-sacrifice, of working for God and for others, becomes a privileged way of responding to his great LOVE.”
I am grateful for all the blessings I have received through you. I am truly blessed to be your pastor and part of your family. I echo Peter’s words in this passage: “What I do have I give you!” In spite of our struggles and uncertainties, what we have received could be multiplied when we are generous with the Lord.
I would like to list five reasons for which I am particularly grateful for this year:
- IHM and NLRCA Schools. For our principals Mr. Smith and Mrs. Troutman and to all our teachers and assistants. Your work and dedication are invaluable! Thank you!
- For my Staff in both parishes (Lisa, Javy, Allan, Mark, Ginny and Mary) and to Fr. Juan Manjarrez and Msgr. Friend; without their help, my whole ministry would be sterile.
- For the emerging Hispanic Community at St. Mary’s that brings a lot of life to my ministry.
- For my family and their support and prayers from a distance, their sacrifice has helped me to be a better priest.
- For all my parishioners, especially those whom I do not see often due to the restrictions. Your daily sacrifice makes a huge impact in our communities. You are in my prayers!
Remember: “Joy springs from a grateful heart!”
I am thankful for all that God is doing among us. He is in charge… He is at work!