Are you looking for Father Mike’s August 21, 2022 letter?
From the Pastor’s Desk | Aug 14, 2022 | Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves
of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us
while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith.
– Hebrews 12:1-2a
Brothers and Sisters,
When was the last time you allowed yourself the luxury of cloud gazing? I hope you’ve had extra time this summer to slow down and do just that! The other day, after mowing my Mother’s lawn, my nieces and nephews overpowered me in an impromptu water balloon battle (yes, it was very similar to the parish picnic). After our fight, I reclined in a comfy lawn chair to peek at the sky above. The clouds that day were rather vivid. Have you ever tried to describe what you see when you look at a cloud formation to someone else? If you haven’t, try this fun exercise – getting another to see can be almost impossible.
In this week’s Second Reading, the Letter to the Hebrews offers an image for us, the saints as a “cloud of witnesses.” A group of believers whose lives made clear they followed Jesus! Their example of faith serves as a testament to God’s abiding love and intimacy with his sons and daughters. Remember, though we may not be saints (yet), we are, each of us, witnesses to Jesus. Still, we cannot force our vision upon others. The eyes of faith must be cultivated through prayer, reading Scripture, and letting our lives bear witness. Then we can invite others to gaze heavenward, to find a living and true God.
Tomorrow’s, the Solemnity of the Assumption, also focuses our sights on the heavens. While not a Holy Day of obligation this year, I encourage everyone to come to Mass on August 15 at 8:15 am and 7 pm to celebrate our Mother and thank the Lord for opening the gates of heaven for all his faithful. The feast marks Mary’s profound “yes” to the Lord’s plan and her reward of being raised, body, and soul, into God’s eternal kingdom. Mary still intercedes for us, seated first, supernaturally among the saints.
Music is powerful! Hymes and worship music helps us focus our minds and hearts on God when we are in Mass. Our parish has a wonderful music ministry, great musicians, cantors, and singers. This weekend marks a transition as Ben-David completes three years of service as our Music Ministry Director here at OLPH and moves on to a parish in Arlington. Please join me in thanking God for his talents and that the Lord will continue to use him to give praise and glory to God.
Lastly, as the academic year fast approaches, I encourage parishioners and neighbors to consider if our Parish school might be a fit for their children and family. Our Lady of Perpetual Help School is offering a Welcome Tuition Grant of $1000 for new students entering K to 7th grades who enroll during August. Check out this fantastic opportunity at https://olphschool.org/tuition-grants-2022-23-academic-year/ or call the school office at (410)744-4251 for more information about our Blue Ribbon school.
In the Lord,
Rev. Michael S. Triplett