The Resurrection of the Lord
Dear Epiphany Family,
Happy Easter! Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Peter 1:3). Easter brings us this living hope that sin and death do not have the final say because of Jesus’ great gift for us through his passion, death, and resurrection. The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that hope is the “theological virtue by which we desire the kingdom of heaven and eternal life as our happiness, placing our trust in Christ’s promises and relying not on our own strength, but on the help of the grace of the Holy Spirit” (CCC 1817). We deal with many challenges and sufferings in this present life, but Easter reminds us to go beyond our earthly hopes to look to Jesus’ promise of the life to come. This hope is within our grasp as we strive to live in friendship with Jesus and surrender our lives to him in the midst of his Church. If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above (Colossians 3:1). I pray that you can carry this hope in your hearts and share it with your friends, family, and all you meet.
Beginning Easter Monday I will be on my yearly retreat. I have been looking forward to this dedi-cated time of prayer, reflection, and quiet for some time. Church law (canon law) requires priests to make an annual spiritual retreat. I am looking forward to spending this more intense time with Jesus in silence so he can better strengthen me to share him with you all and not merely share myself. This year I am going to the St. Felix Catholic Center for my retreat in Huntington, Indi-ana. This will be my first retreat there. Blessed Solanus Casey spent part of his ministry there (while also having served many years in Detroit). Please pray for me and be assured of my pray-ers for you.
I am also looking forward to attending and concelebrating my twin nephews’ First Communion in Dayton on Saturday, May 7th. They are the youngest of my 10 nephews and nieces (7 nephews and 3 nieces). I will be away that weekend and am very grateful to spend such a special time with my family. Due to my service in my various assignments I have only been able to be present for a few of my nephews and nieces First Communions, but I am always grateful to be able to celebrate with the multiple parish families I have been blessed to serve.
Again, Happy Easter and may the joy of the Risen Jesus fill your hearts!
1 Peter 2:4-5
Come to him, a living stone, rejected by human beings but chosen and precious in the sight of God, and, like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood to oﬀer spiritual sacriﬁces acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Heavenly Father, you provide for all our needs and love us with inﬁnite, merciful love. You never abandon us but are ever-present, giving us hope now and for the future. We thank and praise you for the heritage of the original East Toledo parishes and their witness to you.
We are your living stones built upon the Living Stone of Jesus.
Send your Holy Spirit upon us, our whole Epiphany family, and all of East Toledo,
that we may be guided and given wisdom to do your will in all things.
Inspire us to grow as disciples of Jesus, helping us to be true living stones,
building one another up and more closely united in the Living Stone of Jesus.
Help us be good stewards of all you have shared with us and honor our past.
Guide our discernment and give us courage to make decisions that will make our parish fruitful.
Help us, as living stones, to share the Living Stone of Jesus with all, building your Kingdom. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Jesus the Good Shepherd, have mercy on us
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary, pray for us
St. Louis, pray for us
St. Stephen of Hungary, pray for us
St. Thomas Aquinas, pray for us