Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Announcements: 4th Sunday of Lent Year A

Dear Holy Rosary Mission Parishioners, here are a few Announcements:

Potluck: Next Potluck will be May 29, 2011, when the Archbishop visits.

Confirmation: We have five candidates for confirmation for Holy Rosary (one adult and four below the age of 16) and one for Saint Theresa (age 11). They have all written letters to the Archbishop telling why they want to be confirmed. Further requirements are five hours of community service, 3-5 hours of catechism (review of the Mass, our Creed, and Catholic terminology/posture), and two paragraphs on one of the fruits or gifts of the Holy Spirit. Please keep Johanna, Anthony, Brian, Walter, Joshua, and Daniel in your prayers.

Gospel: Jesus heals the man born blind (Please see Homily and readings below).

Mount Angel Seminary: I will be traveling this week to Oregon. Mount Angel is having it’s yearly alumni gathering for continuing education.

Around the Mission: Our Cherokee is still awaiting parts in King Salmon. It should be back in the air next week. Mass was celebrated in Clarks Point, King Salmon/Naknek, and Dillingham last week.

Have a wonderful week…Fr. Scott

Homily and Readings 4th Lent Sun Year A DLG 2011 Dark-Light1Sam16:1- 13;Eph5:8-14; Jn 9:1-41

The Man Born Blind went from physical darkness to being able to see. He had never seen light, the beauty of nature, or human faces. He was ignored. In those days people believed that deformities and sickness were a direct result of sin. Jesus noticed the blind man and paid attention to him. Jesus brought him from darkness into the light.

The Gospel of the man born blind is a step-by-step example of how to grow in faith. Through meeting with his neighbors, friends, relatives, and Jesus, he grew in faith. He was finally able to say that yes, Jesus is Lord. He went from dark into light.

Saint Paul says, “You were once in darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” Similar to my story, the blind man’s eyes opened because he slowly grew in faith through contact with people, confusion, and struggle. He went from darkness into the light spiritually. Many of us have probably experienced something similar.

Dark and light is a constant theme in our daily lives. Dark and light are like: sin and forgiveness; suffering and being healed; Cross-and-Resurrection.

At birth, we physically come from darkness into light. We go from darkness to light during Conversion. Going from Darkness into light may be as simple as having a change of heart. Here in Alaska we go from dark winters to light summers. Each transition gives us opportunities to grow in faith and holiness. Each is about salvation.

In Acts, St. Paul says to the jailer, “believe in the Lord Jesus and your household will be saved.” Then the jailer’s family was baptized.”

Baptism is coming from darkness into the light. We are all born into darkness; what gives us life is Baptism.

We were once blind. The Lord gave us light when we were baptized. About Baptism, Saint Augustine says, “The light shines on us now, for we have had our eyes anointed with the eye-salve of faith.”

Being confirmed into the Catholic Church is another faith step. It is another transitional step that brings us closer to the light. It makes us shine brighter. It enables us to use the Holy Spirit to help evangelize others…to help bring peace to our lives…to help us to see clearly God’s plans for us.

Today after Eucharist, as we go forth to our families, neighborhoods, and places of work, let’s seek out Jesus. Let’s notice people in need and help bring them from darkness into light.

The fasting, prayer, and almsgiving during Lent are designed to help us uncover the darkness that we hadn’t noticed creeping into our lives. Let Easter be a time when you take another faith step and shine just a little brighter (450 Words).

1 Samuel 16:1-13 The LORD said to Samuel, "How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons." Samuel said, "How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me." And the LORD said, "Take a heifer with you, and say, 'I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.' Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you." Samuel did what the LORD commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, "Do you come peaceably?" He said, "Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the LORD; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice." And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice. When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, "Surely the Lord's anointed is now before the LORD." But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the LORD does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart." Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one." Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one." Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, "The LORD has not chosen any of these." Samuel said to Jesse, "Are all your sons here?" And he said, "There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep." And Samuel said to Jesse, "Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here." He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The LORD said, "Rise and anoint him; for this is the one." Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.

Ephesians 5:8-14 For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light- or the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true. Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what such people do secretly; but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for everything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, "Sleeper, awake! Rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you."

John 9:1-41 As he passed by he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" Jesus answered, "Neither he nor his parents sinned; it is so that the works of God might be made visible through him. We have to do the works of the one who sent me while it is day. Night is coming when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world." When he had said this, he spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva, and smeared the clay on his eyes, and said to him, "Go wash in the Pool of Siloam" (which means Sent). So he went and washed, and came back able to see. His neighbors and those who had seen him earlier as a beggar said, "Isn't this the one who used to sit and beg?" Some said, "It is," but others said, "No, he just looks like him." He said, "I am." So they said to him, "(So) how were your eyes opened?" He replied, "The man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and told me, 'Go to Siloam and wash.' So I went there and washed and was able to see." And they said to him, "Where is he?" He said, "I don't know." They brought the one who was once blind to the Pharisees. Now Jesus had made clay and opened his eyes on a sabbath. So then the Pharisees also asked him how he was able to see. He said to them, "He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and now I can see." So some of the Pharisees said, "This man is not from God, because he does not keep the sabbath." (But) others said, "How can a sinful man do such signs?" And there was a division among them. So they said to the blind man again, "What do you have to say about him, since he opened your eyes?" He said, "He is a prophet." Now the Jews did not believe that he had been blind and gained his sight until they summoned the parents of the one who had gained his sight. They asked them, "Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How does he now see?" His parents answered and said, "We know that this is our son and that he was born blind. We do not know how he sees now, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him, he is of age; he can speak for him self." His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews, for the Jews had already agreed that if anyone acknowledged him as the Messiah, he would be expelled from the synagogue. For this reason his parents said, "He is of age; question him." So a second time they called the man who had been blind and said to him, "Give God the praise! We know that this man is a sinner." He replied, "If he is a sinner, I do not know. One thing I do know is that I was blind and now I see." So they said to him, "What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?" He answered them, "I told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples, too?" They ridiculed him and said, "You are that man's disciple; we are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but we do not know where this one is from." The man answered and said to them, "This is what is so amazing, that you do not know where he is from, yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but if one is devout and does his will, he listens to him. It is unheard of that anyone ever opened the eyes of a person born blind. If this man were not from God, he would not be able to do anything." They answered and said to him, "You were born totally in sin, and are you trying to teach us?" Then they threw him out. When Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, he found him and said, "Do you believe in the Son of Man?" He answered and said, "Who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?" Jesus said to him, "You have seen him and the one speaking with you is he." He said, "I do believe, Lord," and he worshiped him. Then Jesus said, "I came into this world for judgment, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind." Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard this and said to him, "Surely we are not also blind, are we?" Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you are saying, 'We see,' so your sin remains.

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