Sunday, June 19, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - June 19

Dear Parishioners:

When Jesus chose a word to express the intimacy of His Relationship with God in our shared human nature, He chose the word “Abba,” which is really a word that defies translation.  “Daddy, Papa, Dearest Father” are all efforts to share the depth of meaning.  The closest might be “Da Da,” the first acknowledgement of the baby of his or her father, which competes with “Mama” for being the first word uttered in recognition.  When He teaches us to pray, Jesus says, “When you pray, say ‘Abba.’”

On this day, we give recognition to our earthly fathers.  This reminds us of the promise that is given to us in our relationship with our Heavenly Father.  We pray to Him every day in awareness that we are brothers and sisters: “Our Father, Who art in Heaven….”  The best way to honor our fathers, grandfathers, godfathers and mentors on earth is to live in accord with the call of our Heavenly Father to love one another.  “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 3:16)  We live in accord with Faith so that we may share the Eternal Life offered to us through Jesus Christ.

The program that many men of our parish and other parishes around the diocese have followed called “That Man Is You” reminds fathers that they are called to unite their families in prayer and worship, honoring our Heavenly Father and so giving example to their children.  It also points out that practice of the Faith by the next generation often depends upon the witness of the father in the family.  If Dad goes to church and prays, cooperating with Mom in the witness of Faith, it is more likely that the next generation will continue the tradition.  So Father’s Day is a call to all earthly fathers to collaborate with the grace of the Holy Spirit in leading us all to honor our Father in Heaven.

As summer opens before us, may we continue to grow as a community of believers united in mind and heart who strive together to promote the greater glory of God our Father.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - June 12

Dear Parishioners:

A great gift in our time is the simple fact that we can be in touch with people literally all over the world at the touch of a key.  There is something incredibly amazing about this reality of daily experience.  A phone call, an email or an instant message, a connection through Skype or Facetime or some other app on an electronic device can create the opportunity for an encounter with virtually every person on the planet.  Some of our elders have lived through the whole gamut of such devices: telephones with operators and party lines, radio, television, computers, cell phones, ipads, tablets, androids, iphones, etc., etc. etc.  Who knows what the next generations will see?

When we consider such advances in technology, we can come to understand more deeply by analogy the realities of our Faith that we have known through the centuries as Church.  Prayer puts us in communion with God, the Creator of the Universe, and with those who have gone before us into the mystery of the Communion of Saints.  We are able to pray now and to be in touch with the members of the Church in her three states: the Saints in Glory (the Church Triumphant), the Holy Souls of Purgatory (the Church Suffering), and the Saints in training all throughout the world (the Church Militant).

If we understand the Mass properly, we begin to realize that this is the “place” where the whole Church is present.  We one with the Saints in Glory in worship of the Living God.  In fact, Mass is our entry into the Mystery of Eternity in time.  The Light of Glory is present to us in our participation in the Mass.  We are in touch, too, with those who have gone before us in the Faith, our relatives and friends who are entrusted to God’s Mercy and whom we long to see again.  Various moments of silence, especially that which takes place right after reception of Holy Communion, are the closest we will be to them in this life.  The celebration of the same Liturgy of the Mass each day throughout the world reminds us that we are all destined for a glory that hidden from our eyes as we walk the journey of Faith.

May we all keep this in mind as we enter into the Summer months.  This may be a time of vacation from certain pursuits and activities, but it must not be a time away from the practice of our Faith.  Enjoy your Summer and keep the Faith alive in your family by continuing to worship together.  The family that prays together stays together!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - June 5

Dear Parishioners:

We wish heartfelt Congratulations to all our graduates at all levels and to their families who have supported them along the way. 

Our 8th Grade will conclude their time in St. Timothy School this week.   Our PSR Students also are completing their days in elementary education.  High School Students in our parish are experiencing their Commencement ceremonies these days at various times and the parties are taking place.  College and University completions are occurring, as well as other higher-level degrees.  It is heartening to know that members of our community are taking on the world.  We know that the foundation they have received through their association with St. Timothy Parish and School is a solid foundation because it is based upon our Faith in Jesus Christ.  Jesus Himself tells us “Take courage, for I have conquered the world.”  (John 16:33)

Our School has a Mission Statement that really captures what we are trying to do for all our families:  “Live in Faith.  Love and Serve.  Learn for Life.” 

This fits nicely into our Parish Mission: “United in the Body of Christ, we strive to promote the greater glory of God through a spirit of welcome and willing service to our brothers and sisters.” 

The prayer that is engraved on the statue of our Patron Saint Timothy has begun to serve as a marker of our common experience of St. Timothy Church:  “To the King of Ages, the Invisible, the Immortal, the Only God, Be Honor and Glory forever and ever! Amen.

These three items can serve all of us as we strive to make a difference in the world.  We are called to be a welcoming community who work together to show others by our lives that the Gospel is true because it is the center of our identity. 

Congratulations, Graduates!  Always remember who you are and who your teachers were!  May you never give away your dignity, but by your life show others their worth in Jesus Christ.  Blessings to all.  May your new adventures take you further than you ever dreamed you could go.  Know that St. Timothy Parish is always your home.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - May 29 Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ

Dear Parishioners:

This weekend is a full weekend of celebration of the Gift of priestly ordination and the Sacrament of Holy Orders.  Locally, we join Fr. Bill Faustner in remembering his 40 years of being a priest.  On Saturday morning, three new priests were ordained for the Diocese of Columbus, beginning their own journey in a life of priestly service: Fr. Dan Swartz of St. Agatha Parish, whose grandparents Leo and Estelle Paquette are members of St. Timothy Church; Fr. Tim Lynch of St. Mary Church in German Village; and Fr. Stephen Smith of St. Brendan the Navigator in Hilliard.

We give God thanks that these individuals and so many others have responded to the call to share their lives with us.  We rejoice at God’s grace and power that has sustained them through the time of seminary formation.  We look forward to the years ahead as their lives as shepherds unfold in the Diocese of Columbus.  Let us continue to keep them and all those who serve God’s People in our prayers.  Let us also invite our younger members to open their own hearts to hear the Lord’s call in their lives.

This weekend, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, also known as Corpus Christi.  We acknowledge the Gift of the Eucharist, the Bread of Life and the Precious Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ in the Chalice of Eternal Salvation.  We realize that Eucharist makes the Church and that without priests among us, we have no Eucharist.  The Sacramental Life we share, which is opened to us through Baptism, is the answer to the world’s needs.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - May 22 Most Holy Trinity

Dear Parishioners:

The Holy Trinity is the heart of our Catholic Faith.  We are invited to experience something of the Inner Life of God through contemplation of this Mystery.  In human relationships, the most precious truths are those that are shared spontaneously from the heart.  The same is true in our Relationship with God.  We are drawn into the very Mystery by a glance, a look with the eyes of the heart.  Our spirits, touched by the Living Spirit of God, are made one with Jesus Christ and we are given a glimpse of the Father, Abba, Whom Jesus reveals to us.  If we can simply accept this, it truly changes everything.  We don’t just know things about God, we know God.  This knowing is too deep for words, but the “naming” of the Mystery is a precious “capturing” of the Truth so that we may be drawn in.

The proper response to the Mystery is prayer:  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit…..

Abba, Father, we thank you for making Yourself known to us in Jesus Christ and through the power of Your Holy Spirit poured out into our hearts and lives.

Jesus, Lord, Savior, Redeemer, we praise You for living among us as our Brother and Friend and for the salvation You won for us through your Passion, Death and Resurrection and for taking our human nature into the very Reality of God in the Ascension.

Spirit, Breath of Life, Unity of the Father and the Son, Sanctifier, we open our hearts to You and seek to follow where You lead, as you draw us ever more into Jesus Christ and free us to worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth.

Father, Jesus, Spirit, we adore You.  We lay our lives before You.  How we love You!

May we become ever more truly One with God through the Mystery of the Holy Trinity.  And may our lives be spent in sharing this wonderful Truth with the world.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - May 15 Pentecost

Dear Parishioners:

Come, Holy Spirit!  Lord, send out your Spirit and renew the face of the earth!

Today we pray this prayer in earnest, begging God to pour out His Spirit on us and to draw us ever more into the Life that God has offered us through Jesus Christ.  Pentecost is the grand conclusion to the Easter Season and an invitation to respond to the power of God at work in us. 

The Scriptures remind us that the Church is born by the grace of the Holy Spirit.  We see Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and the Apostles gathered together in the Upper Room, receiving the touch of God through wind and tongues of fire.  We hear of the new courage that Peter and the others experience that leads them to proclaim the Good News of the Resurrection.  We observe the effective movement of the Word that is presented so boldly as people of every nation hear the Truth and respond by accepting the New Life given to them in Christ.  The first Pentecost sets in motion the going forth of the Church to every land and nation.

In our time, we hear the invitation to a new Pentecost that draws us into the Mission of Evangelization and Catechesis.  Each one of us is called to hear the Gospel, to change our minds and hearts, and to commit to the New Life poured out on us through the Spirit.  How does the Holy Spirit move in your heart?  Is your own Joy in the Gospel evident in your manner of living?  Who is waiting to hear your proclamation of the Good News?

May the Holy Spirit fill you with God’s Peace and may you become ever more aware of the Truth of the Gospel.  Happy Pentecost!

Prayer to the Holy Spirit:
Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created, and you will renew the face of the earth.
Let us pray.  Lord, by the light of the Holy Spirit you have taught the hearts of your faithful.  In the same Spirit help us to relish what is right and always rejoice in your consolation. We ask this through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Prayer from St. Augustine:

Breathe in me, O Holy Spirit,
that my thoughts may all be holy.
Act in me, O Holy Spirit,
that my work too may be holy.
Draw my heart, O Holy Spirit,
that I love but what is holy.
Strengthen me, O Holy Spirit,
to defend all that is holy.
Guide me then, O Holy Spirit,
that I always may be holy.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

A Word from Your Pastor - May 8 Ascension

Dear Parishioners:

Mothers teach us how to love.  In the month of May, we are reminded to thank our mothers, our grandmothers, and our godmothers on earth and our Heavenly Mother Mary.  We do so by little signs, expressions of love and gratitude.  Cards and flowers, small gifts and warm embraces all show our affection and love.  These acts also serve to remind us of the power at work in each of us to give life and to nourish and nurture others by our own gift of self.  Holy Mother Church also deserves our recognition. It is the Church that offers us the connection between earthly life and Eternal Life.  The graces that we receive flow into our hearts and lives through the Sacraments, beginning with Baptism.  When we keep ourselves mindful of this flow, we see the fruits of motherhood in all their glory.  Mother of every sort make a real difference and on this day and in this month we say “Thanks!”

In today’s Mass, we recall the Ascension of the Lord into Heavenly Glory.   Through the Ascension, Jesus takes our human nature, glorified by the Resurrection, to share intimately in the very Life of the Holy Trinity.  Now that our nature has been given a share in Divine Life, we pray for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Church and on the whole world.  Cooperation with grace is the truly human act. 

Mary, our Mother, shows us how to open to grace: her “Fiat,” that is, her “Let it be done” is an affirmation of God’s power at work through the Spirit.  Saying “Yes” to God’s Will in our lives offers us Eternity.  We are capable of this due to the Resurrection, Ascension and Outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost.  Let us pray together: “Come, Holy Spirit!”  And let us open our hearts to God’s action among us.

Next weekend will be a weekend of Welcome, with refreshments after all Masses and with a festive spirit as we celebrate the Solemnity of Pentecost.  Invite family and friends to gather with us as we close the Easter Season.