From the Pastor’s Desk
Twelfth Sunday of Ordinary Time
June 18, 2023
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send
out laborers for his harvest.”
~ Matthew 9:37-38
Brothers and Sisters,
Ask yourself: How valuable am I? How valuable are you?
Today’s Gospel emphasizes one of the most repeated messages of Scripture: be not afraid. Why? We all enjoy immeasurable value in God’s eyes – more than we realize. As Christians, remembering our worth is essential, especially when facing opposition in living out Jesus’ mission, which can result in misunderstandings or, at times, full-out rejection. Still, we must remain committed to amplifying the truth of the Gospel: we have immense value in the eyes of the Lord, and we can trust in him to help us as we do his work.
On June 19, Pope Francis delivered his latest apostolic letter, “Sublimitas et Miseria Hominis,” or “The Grandeur and Misery of Man.” (Search for either title on the internet and click for the text on Vatican.va). In it, he recognizes the 400th Anniversary of Blaise Psacal’s birth. You may remember Pascal’s Wager from school (and hopefully his simple evidence that there is a God). The Wager can be summed up as one ought to live like God exists because it will matter if there is one. If there is no God, it will not. So we have much more to lose if we live as if there is no God. In skimming the letter, Francis emphasizes the Gospel’s message: we are valuable. God cares about us, and our Creator gives us all the tools we need to know him. And in closing: ‘After receiving the sacraments, his last words were: “May God never abandon me.”‘ (Perier, Vie de M. Pascal) God will never abandon us. Be not afraid!
On Saturday, Archbishop Lori ordained Fathers John Bileki (whose brother Brian plays piano for us at our 9 am Mass), Luke Koski (who was briefly a seminarian at OLPH when I first arrived here four years ago), Daniel Acquard (whom Deacon Mike knew when he was growing up), in addition to Javier Fuentes, Felix Mmoah, Nicholas Mwai, and Sampson Onwumere. Please offer thanksgiving for these eight new priests in our Archdiocese!
Please also encourage our children, youth, and young adults to consider a religious vocation when discerning what God wants for their lives. To that end, High School boys (rising 9th graders to recent 12th-grade graduates) are welcome to Quo Vadis, July 10-13, 2023, an overnight retreat organized by the Baltimore seminarians. Attendees don’t have to feel that they have arrived at a religious vocation to attend. All that is required is an openness to the priesthood, prayer, and having fun with other attendees. For more info or to register, visit archbalt.org/vocations/quo-vadis.