Fr. Mike’s Communication for May 2, 2021

5th Sunday of Easter | 2 May 2021

“Remain in me, as I remain in you.
Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own
unless it remains on the vine,
so neither can you unless you remain in me.
I am the vine, you are the branches.”

~ John 15:4-5a

Brothers and Sisters,

May this Season of Easter continue to bring renewed hope and joy to you and your families! Today, many of our Christian brothers and sisters in the Eastern Catholic and Orthodox tradition celebrate Easter Sunday. We continue to pray for our sisters and brothers and all followers of Jesus that we may work together to establish Christian unity.

Today’s Gospel is paramount and central to the teachings of Jesus. Aware that he will soon embrace the cross and his own death, “Remain in me, as I in you. …” is part of his farewell. Jesus wants to make certain that his friends understand, life bears fruit only when we are in communion with the Lord. Staying interconnected to Jesus is the source of life.

Fast forward two thousand years, our call to action remains the same. As his followers, we must stay joined both to our Lord Jesus and to His Body, the Church. While we may feel exhausted or disheartened in the mission to bring the Good News to our neighbor, our efforts to evangelize and bring the love of Christ to the greater community must remain central to our focus. That’s why it’s important to return to Jesus so that he may guide us with a renewed focus for the mission. I encourage you to explore how to remain in him and sustain the journey. Some ways you may find restoration include: look upon Jesus in Eucharistic Adoration, turn to Mary through the rosary, imitate the lives of the Saints, pray daily, return to the Sacraments of reconciliation and the Eucharist, take a long walk in nature, thanking God for His beautiful creation.

If you have felt physically depleted, visit this six-minute YouTube video on “energy management,” in which Matthew Kelly describes four levels of energy:
(1) depressed, exhausted, burned-out, defeated, overwhelmed
(2) angry, fearful, anxious, defensive, resentful
(3) mellow and serene
(4) confident, joyful, enthusiastic, invigorated

Much advice and strategy have been written about time management. Cultivating organizational skills and learning how to prioritize tasks are important lessons to master. Still, as Matthew Kelly points out, time is not our only limited resource. We need to be aware of what drains our energy, as well as the means by which we renew that energy. Often what we do to relax or rest, fails to recharge our batteries. We can get caught in a vicious cycle of making poor decisions and losing sight of what truly benefits us, improves our lives and the lives of the family and friends who surround us.

At times like those, it’s important to point ourselves back to the source of all life, Jesus! Our relationship with the Lord needs a proper priority and should be at the forefront of our lives. Cultivating a strong and daily prayer life will keep us connected to Christ and guide and support our efforts. Only through reliance upon the Lord will we discover the strength and encouragement to live selfless lives. Let us “remain in him” by connecting daily with Jesus, our renewable and limitless source of energy.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.

Rev. Michael S. Triplett

Some of the key considerations for this week.

  • Please reserve your seat here for the 6th Sunday of Easter, May 8-9.
  • Next Sunday, May 9th is Mothers’ Day! In remembrance of our mothers and motherly figures, please feel free to submit their names here. Our parish will place their names upon the altar and remember them in prayer during our Mother’s Day Novena Masses (May 9th – May 17th). 
  • This Friday, May 7, at 7:30 pm will be our next Festival of Praise (FOP), both in person and on livestream. Our plan, weather cooperating, is to offer this celebration outside of Harrison Hall, which allows us to add our voices in song together. It is our intention to welcome back OLPH Prayer Teams to our monthly FOPs! Bring your own chairs and join us in connecting with our Risen Lord, Jesus!
  • The Msgr. O’Dwyer Retreat House has served the Archdiocese since 1963. Countless youth have crossed its threshold to have their faith strengthened on Confirmation Retreats, Youth or Campus Ministry Retreats, the High School Leadership Institute. Please consider supporting the House by purchasing a $100 raffle ticket, with a chance to win $10,000. Tickets are limited to 500. Contact me, or at the office (410)747-4334, x302, to purchase a ticket.
  • Sadly, there are individuals who particularly prey on the elderly and the vulnerable. The parish recently learned of scammers, who present themselves as Howard County Officials inspecting the wiring in people’s homes. In this instance, the scammers nefariously made away with an $8,000 check, for the cost of unneeded wiring. Please be careful, and do not allow strangers in your homes, and let’s all work to keep our elderly loved ones safe. Additionally, please know the parish nor pastor will never request gift cards or money through an email to you.  If you ever receive such emails, please ignore the request and/or report it to our parish office.