Fr. Mike’s Communication for May 9, 2021

6th Sunday of Easter | 9 May 2021

“Get up. I myself am also a human being.”

-Acts 10:26b

Brothers and Sisters,

Happy Mothers’ Day! This weekend we honor our well-deserving mothers, grandmothers, godmothers, and all the mother figures all in our lives. Their generous love and support reflect the goodness of the Lord. We remember them and in our masses throughout this week.

Likewise, this weekend, we will crown, Mary, our Blessed Mother, renewing the consecration of our parish to her, Our Lady of Perpetual Help. At times, Catholicism’s reverence of Mary is often misunderstood, even by our brothers and sisters in Christ. Like many of our mothers, Mary does not seek recognition and reward. Her desire is that we might know her Son and follow the Lord by the gift of the Spirit. Let us continue to implore the intercession of our Blessed Mother and give thanks to God for her motherly care and compassion for us, her adopted daughters and sons by the gift of Christ on the cross.

In today’s first reading, Peter’s reaction to Cornelius falling to his feet in homage to him, a mere man “also a human being,” validates all praise, honor, and glory are due to our one true King, Jesus Christ! Peter further instructs Cornelius and the others neither social classes nor distinctions of worthiness are acceptable in the Church. The same should apply today. God does not want us to establish ranks of superior or inferior. While easily recognized as valid, this teaching to treat one another without prejudice or distinction requires an openness to guidance and gifts of the Holy Spirit.

This need reminds us the gift of the Spirit at Pentecost is not a one-time event or occurrence. As the faithful gathered in prayer and listened to Peter’s preaching, with the Spirit bringing them into union with God. Countless gifts and blessings are received by those who are open to the Holy Spirit today.  

I encourage all our families and parishioners to enter into prayer together at our Pentecost Novena. Welcoming the gifts of the Spirit to strengthen the mission of our parish. These nine-evenings of prayer will center on the titles of the Holy Spirit, attributed in the Litany of the Holy Spirit

  1. Truth & Wisdom
  2. Holiness & Justice
  3. Understanding & Counsel
  4. Love & Joy
  5. Peace & Patience
  6. Longanimity & Meekness
  7. Benignity & Goodness
  8. Love Substantial of the Father & Son
  9. Love & Life of Saintly Souls

Join us in-person or via livestream worship, beginning Friday, May 14 at 7 pm, for uplifting, live music, along with novena prayers, reflection, and benediction in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. The Novena culminates in our celebration of Pentecost, with the extended Vigil at 7 pm on Saturday, May 22, along with the regular Sunday Masses that same weekend.

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 Solemnity of the Ascension, May 15-16.
  • Archbishop Lori will ordain eighteen men to the diaconate over the following Saturdays (May 15 and 22). Among these gentlemen is our parishioner, Roch Kallmyer, who will be ordained on Saturday, May 22nd at 10am.  While the ordinations are by invitation only, you are invited to join the livestream broadcast from the Cathedral of Mary our Queen. Roch will preach his first Mass as a deacon at Our Lady of Perpetual Help on Sunday, May 23 at 9 am. As a parish family, let us continue to continue to pray for Roch in these final days and celebrate this special Mass with him in person or via live broadcast.
  • The Archdiocese of Baltimore recently updated several areas of guidance offered to parishes, which are available online for parishioners to review. I welcome your thoughts as I work with the staff, corporators, and pastoral council to implement a plan grounded in safety while driven by the desire to offer the sacraments, ministry, and a place for prayer. 

Keeping informed on the status of our parish plan is essential; for your awareness, here are a few changes already implemented. All updated directives apply to both those who are vaccinated and those not yet vaccinated:

  • In the Church and all campus buildings, parishioners must wear a mask (except those under two years old and children 2-5-year-old, as able). Please maintain 6 feet physical distancing, and regularly wash your hands.
  • It is always our Parish’s priority to make the Sacraments available to our parishioners. The option to attend Mass in person is essential, just as we commit to making the Livestream available for those who join us in prayer in this way. We are currently planning to expand in-person participation as we know 9am and 4:30pm Mass tends to fill up quickly. Additionally, we appreciate your patience during the month of May as each week we will welcome First Communicants to our Masses, which will also add participants to each of our Masses.  While it may be frustrating to not be able to attend your first Mass choice, it is a joy to have many able to return and celebrate these special moments with the children of our parish family.  
  • While the practice of blessing oneself with holy water as a reminder of our baptism remains optional, we are delighted to share the Holy Water fonts have been returned to the entrance of the Church from the Narthex. 
  • Those who join us for the Outdoor Mass are encouraged to wear a mask, but only in the two noted sections closest to Ilchester Road; mask-wearing is now optional for outdoor Mass only.
  • Singing is now permitted by all faithful who are masked, including Masses inside our Church.
  • The sign of peace is restored without physical contact.  Parishioners are encouraged to turn towards those in nearby pews and offer peace verbally or with a simple gesture sans physical contact.
  • If you feel unwell or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please stay home and join us in prayer via our Livestream.
  • Echoing Archbishop Lori, who encourages vaccinations as an ‘act of charity and love’, we support all eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Something that sets OLPH apart is our hospitality and love for our neighbors. As fellow parishioners return to campus, joyfully share your delight to see them.  And for those who have not yet returned, I encourage you to reach out to them and let them know they are missed. As a parish, we respect each other, we reach out in love and we support our fellow brothers and sisters.