Sunday, April 12, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - April 12, 2015 Divine Mercy Sunday

Dear Parishioners:

Divine Mercy Sunday is a wonderful celebration that deepens our understanding of the Glory of Easter.  As the Octave, that is, the 8th Day, of Easter, it is the culmination of the Easter Proclamation.  The promise of Mercy gives us room to become a People united in Faith who have come to trust more fully in God’s promises.

Pope Saint John Paul II, inspired by Saint Faustina Kowalska, declared this Feast of Mercy.  His own day of death was on the vigil of the Feast.  Now, Pope Francis is taking the opportunity of this Feast to use to formally declare the “Year of Mercy” that will be observed from December 8, 2015 (the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception), until November 20, 2016 (the Solemnity of Christ the King).  Mercy is clearly the theme for our times.

How do you understand Mercy?  There are two aspects.  First, mercy is given to those in need of forgiveness.  It creates room for repentance and renewal.  Second, mercy is the response of those who know the Love of God to give room to all who have not yet understood.  It invites in those who have been kept “outside” for whatever reason.

St. Timothy Parish will experience the Feast of Mercy through the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick at all our weekend Masses and by a special time of Adoration and Prayer following the Noon Mass today.  The Sacrament of Confession will be available during the time of Adoration.  The Divine Mercy Chaplet and Benediction will conclude the celebration.  All are invited to open their hearts to Mercy and to share Mercy with others.

Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord, is the Lord of Mercy.  He breaks through all barriers and reveals the Love of God offered to all who are in need of His Mercy.  May we trust in Him and lead others to the Fount of Mercy.


Thanks to all who participated in the events of Lent and Easter.  We have now entered into the Easter Season.  It lasts until Pentecost.  Let us learn to be docile to the Holy Spirit Who makes known to us the Love and Mercy of God poured out in Jesus the Risen Lord. 

Sunday, April 5, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - April 5, 2015 Easter

Dear Parishioners and Easter Sunday Guests:

Happy Easter!  Jesus Christ is Risen, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

As we celebrate the Good News of the Resurrection of Jesus, we are invited to realize that what God has accomplished in Him, by the power of the same Spirit Who raised Jesus from the dead, He will do also for us.  We are destined to a Life beyond this life and that makes all the difference.

The Resurrection of Jesus is not one of those “feel good” stories that we can only wish would be true.  It is the Story that is “more true” than all the others.  It is the Story that tells us that our lives have a purpose and a meaning so that we can put our trust in life itself and in the God Who created us.  The Resurrection of Jesus and the consequences that flow from it show us the plan God has had in mind for us from the moment He created us.

Putting our Faith in Jesus the Risen Lord is the best response of our human nature.  Hope and a capacity to love with God’s own Love are ours through this Faith.  People of Faith are called to serve the Risen Lord as witnesses to the Resurrection now more than ever.  How does your Faith that God raised Jesus from the dead change the way you view what happens in the world?  Are you able to see beyond the troubles of the present circumstances in which we live to the Life beyond life that is opened to us through the Resurrection of Jesus?

As we live the Easter Season, the fifty days that now unfold ahead of us, let us continue to grow in our capacity for an ever deeper understanding of our Faith.  This is the Season of the Holy Spirit.  May we be docile to the Spirit Who raised Jesus from the dead and so be formed by the New Life that is poured into our hearts through Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord.


Please keep me in your prayers during Easter Week.  I will be taking my annual retreat.  This year, I am joining priests who are members of the Focolare Movement at Mariapolis Luminosa in Hyde Park, New York.  The spirituality of the Focolare is one of Unity.  Pray that we may all grow into the Unity of mind and heart the Risen Lord wills for us as we seek to follow Him through Faith.  Come, Holy Spirit!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - March 29 Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

Dear Parishioners:

Happy Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord!

Now that we have completed our journey through all but the last few days of Lent, it is time to take stock.  Are you ready for Easter?  How will you finish up your Lenten preparations and open your heart to the graces of the Easter Season?  We have fasted, now it is time to feast.

I propose that we seek to live the Easter Season with the same intensity as we have lived Lent, or better.  You have Prayed, Fasted and Given Alms.  Can you now move into a time of Praise, Feasting and Sharing Life?

Palm Sunday is the opening of Holy Week.  We are given the opportunity to re-live the final days of the life of our Lord, watching as His Passion unfolds and as He is buried in sorrow.  Then we are invited to hear the Good News of the Resurrection and to enter into a new awareness of the meaning of all that has come before.

This week, I invite you to be part of all that goes on at St. Timothy for Holy Week:

Tuesday of Holy Week, come to St. Joseph Cathedral for the Chrism Mass.  In this Solemn Mass, the Church and her Sacraments are highlighted.  Bishop Campbell and the priests of the Diocese renew their commitment to live the priesthood of Jesus Christ, which was instituted at the Last Supper.  (The Chrism Mass is properly the Mass of Holy Thursday morning, but it is anticipated so that more may be present.)  The Bishop also blesses the three sacred oils that are used for the Sacraments throughout the coming year: The Oil of the Sick, the Oil of Catechumens, and the Sacred Chrism.  This celebration is impressive for the presence of the whole People of God surrounding the Bishop.

Holy Thursday, the Mass of the Lord’s Supper celebrates the Institution of the Holy Eucharist, the Institution of the Priesthood, and the Call to Service (symbolized by the Washing of the Feet – the Mandatum).  We have a special Eucharistic Procession with the First Holy Communion Class serving as Honor Guard.  Adoration continues at the Altar of Repose until Midnight.  Consider coming to spend time with the Lord in the Presence of the Blessed Sacrament.

Good Friday, we have Stations of the Cross and the Seven Last Words between 12 and 3 p.m.  The Good Friday Service is celebrated twice: 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. with the Passion according to John, Veneration of the Cross, and Holy Communion.

Holy Saturday, the Easter Vigil is celebrated at night: the lighting of the Paschal Fire, the Liturgy of the Word with readings of Salvation History, and Reception into Full Communion of those who seek to join us in our Catholic Faith.

Easter Sunday Masses at 8 a.m., 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. welcome many who are with us to hear the Good News of the Resurrection.  All are invited to be ministers of hospitality and welcome.


Make plans to live the Easter Season fully.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - March 22 Lent V

Dear Parishioners:

This weekend reminds us that Life is more than what this world has to offer.  We live in this world in preparation for the next.  As Catholics, we learn to see this world through the eyes of Eternity.  We recognize that death is not the end for us and that what God has in store for us is better than anything this world has to offer.

Many of our elders can remember the Baltimore Catechism question: “Why did God make you?”  Answer: “God made me to know Him, to love Him and to serve Him in this life, and to be happy with Him forever in the next.”  Bishop Campbell often loves to ask this question when he comes for the Sacrament of Confirmation.  All of us are reminded that we are intended for a relationship with God that is more than what we experience in this world.

The grain of wheat that dies becomes the source of much fruit.  As disciples of Jesus, Who has lived our human life and Who suffered, died and rose for us, we are called to cooperate with His Spirit in bringing the Gospel to the world.  The world must come at last to know that God is God and that He has sent Jesus as our Savior.  How we live in our families, our parish, and the wider community must be motivated by our call to be disciples.

Many have heard that Pope Francis has called for an extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy starting at the end of this year.  This Jubilee will begin with the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, December 8, 2015, and will close on the Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. 

At present, we continue the Year of Consecrated Life and we begin to prepare for the visit of Pope Francis to our nation on the occasion of the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia in September.  We can also begin to make plans for the Year of Mercy.  We want to open our hearts to the Mercy of God and to learn how to cooperate with the grace we are offered.

How do you understand Mercy?  How has God been merciful to you?  How are you passing on the Mercy of God to others?  How will you and your family live the Year of Mercy?  What should we do as a parish to make God’s Mercy known in the Year of Mercy?


Sunday, March 15, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - March 15 Lent IV

Dear Parishioners:

Everyone who watches a ball game on television knows that there is one Scripture verse quoted more often than any other:  John 3:16.  “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.

John 3:17, which follows immediately after this, is also worthy to be noted:  “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.

God is all about loving and saving the world through His Son Jesus Christ.  Jesus is the Light of the world.  He is the One Who reveals to us the Mercy and Love of God and God’s desire to make Himself known to us.  We are blind to the real meaning of our lives and of everything we experience if we have not yet come to see Who Jesus is.  This is also so if we have not come to realize that God wants us to share in His love for the world.

So many things that are happening these days are causing us to lose sight of what is central.  Can we find a way to renew our awareness of who God calls us to be?

Salvation is offered to all.  Not all will respond, but we who are among the People of God and who know of the gift of salvation in Jesus Christ are responsible to do all we can to pass on our Faith.  When we keep Eternity in our sights, the struggles of Time are more bearable and we are free to cling to Hope.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - March 8 Lent III

Dear Parishioners:

Lent is moving right along.  The Third Sunday of Lent reminds us of our thirst for God.  Zeal for God’s House consumes Jesus as He purifies the Temple in preparation for the revelation of His Glory.  We are called to allow that purification to take place in us.

The Ten Commandments are given to us to teach us how we belong to God and how our lives are meant to be ordered.  God must be first in our lives.  We must not approach God without awareness of the reverence due to His Name.  We are to keep holy the Sabbath – creating room for God in our use of time. 

Honoring our father and mother is the only commandment that includes a promise: that we will have a long life.  The commands not to kill, not to abuse our sexuality, not to steal and not to tell untruths relate to our cooperation with human society.  The commandments not to covet others’ spouses and others’ material goods point to the call to interiorize the whole list of commandments.


This week, we will have our Parish Lenten Penance Service.  It is an opportunity for us to “clean house” in preparation for Easter.  The experience of the Lenten times of Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving has made known our need for God.  Hearing the story of the Passion through the performance of “The People of the Passion” has brought home to us all that Jesus did for us and the Love God has for us in sending His Son to die and rise for us.  May we respond to the graces that are offered now.  Come to Confession with your family.

All are invited to our Parish Lenten Penance Service, this Thursday, March 12, at 7 p.m.
Come to allow the Lord to clean house in your heart.



The Pilgrim Statue visitation program at St. Timothy Parish

Would you like to invite Jesus Christ into your home through His Mother?
The Pilgrim Statue visitation program has been available to members of Holy Family Parish for over 2 years. The families report receiving many graces, especially a sense of peace during the time the statue stayed in their homes. Now this is available to the any member of St. Timothy. Sign up today for a home visitation of the Pilgrim Statue of Mary.  

For further information, contact Kathy Fulop at katful1425@yahoo.com or 614-690-6305.

Papal Pilgrimage to Philadelphia

 Women's Club is sponsoring the Papal Pilgrimage to Philadelphia for the World family meeting on September 24th- Sept 27th. This journey includes 3 hotel stays, 2 meals/day and sightseeing, all via air-conditioned, restroom-equipped charter buses. We will attend the Papal Mass (with 1-2 million friends) and return in the wee hours Sunday night/ Monday Am. First come, first served! We already have ten out-of-parish requests, so act quickly!

Our World Meeting of Families event is now available for online registration:

Please use this link: http://groupminder.com/internet/resEvt.cfm?cstId=101&evtId=57&evtName=St%2E%20Timothy%20Church.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

A Word from Your Pastor - March 1 Lent II

Dear Parishioners:

The human being is intended by God to experience Glory.  This is part of God’s salvific will for all of us.  We are to be sharers in Divine Life and in Jesus Christ we see Divine Life lived humanly.  The Transfiguration of Jesus in the presence of His most intimate disciples, Peter, James and John, is a revelation of the Glory that is in Him, experience in His humanity just a short time before His Passion and Death.  It serves as a reminder that God is alive in us, present in our world and at the very core of our being.  A glimpse of Glory is a source of strength that frees us to endure whatever happens in the world due to our limitations, whether caused by mere human weakness or by our choice of sin.  God can accomplish in us more than we can ever ask or imagine.

As we continue our journey through Lent, we are invited to seek the Glory of God above all else.  All our decisions and choices must put God first.  When we come to realize all that we are considering more important than God, we must become humble and ask to see the world as God sees it.

The Transfiguration was an intimate moment of prayer for Jesus, as He meets Moses and Elijah to converse about what is going to happen to Him.  He chose to share this moment with His closest disciples, knowing full well that they would not yet grasp its meaning.  As they go down the mountain, after this truly “peak” experience, He tells them not to speak about it until after the Resurrection.  Only then will understanding dawn on them.  Much of our lives is like that.  We only understand after we have lived what God offers.


May we open our hearts to accept the grace and the tastes of Glory that God gives to us through Jesus Christ.  May our hearts be ready to respond to the Love that calls us to walk the journey to Calvary with Jesus so that the world may come to know the salvation that is ours through Him.