Monday, April 25, 2011

Announcements: 2nd Sunday of Easter, Year A

Dear Holy Rosary Mission Parishioners, here are a few announcements.

Thank you: Thank you to Rick Tennyson who framed and hung our stained glass windows. Matteo Guarino created these windows during the last several years.

Thank you: Thank you to Spruce Lynch and Brain Venua for the music during Easter Sunday.

Thank you: Thank you to Bernina Venua for organizing the Easter Egg hunt for the children. There were many happy campers after the Easter Mass!!

Gospel: Have you ever had a sign from God? Please see homily and readings below.

Potluck: Next Potluck will be May 29th after the Confirmation and First Communion celebration.

Confirmation: All those to be confirmed will need to meet after mass, Sunday, May 8th. The Archbishop will be here for confirmation, Sunday, May 29th, at 12:30 PM.

First Communion: Those to receive First Communion will meet with me Sunday, May 15th, after Mass. First Communion will be May 29th.

Canon Law Convention: I will be in Great Falls Montana for a canon law convention next week.

Have a wonderful Easter Season…Fr. Scott

Homily and Readings

2nd Easter Sun A STAER Sings
Have you ever asked for a sign from God? I have. When I became distressed about being in the seminary I prayed for a sign. “God, are you positive this is what you want me to do. If so, give me a sign. One time I said, “God, just show me one negative thing about this seminary and I am out of here.” Well, as you can see, that is one sign I never received.

I think we have all needed a sign from God at one time or another? Some of us probably have strong enough faith that we don’t need to pray for signs. I need them once in awhile…and so did Thomas. Thomas needed something more convincing than just words. He needed a concrete experience with the risen Lord to give his faith a little boost.

Thomas doubted his faith. He struggled with believing that Christ had risen and had come back to life. That struggle led him to a profound experience with the risen Lord.

I think it is OK to ask for signs. It is also OK to doubt our faith. I believe the two go hand in hand. When we doubt our faith, we sometimes need a sign of God’s presence to get us back on track.

Doubting our faith can lead us to struggle with our faith like Thomas did. As we struggle with our faith we ask questions. We try to understand. Our hearts are more open to the Holy Spirit.

That is when the signs we have prayed for may become clear…and those signs enable us to have a personal encounter with the risen Lord.

Experiencing the risen Lord is a sign of God’s presence and love for us. For example, Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers are known to feel a profound joy and love when serving at mass. When we help others, we feel wonderful inside, we experience the risen Lord. When we refuse to gossip and when we are honest, we experience the risen Christ. Ever walked out of Confession and felt like you were totally at peace with God?

All of us here today are benefactors of Thomas experience with the risen Lord. As Thomas believed because he saw the risen Jesus, “So too,” Acts tells us, “were many brought to faith through the various signs and wonders wrought by the apostles.”

Those signs and wonders are all around us. To see them, doubting Thomas reminds us to struggle with our faith…open our hearts to the spirit. It is then that we will see those signs and experience the risen Lord.

When we experience the risen Lord, we grow in faith. Growing in faith should set us on fire with the love of God.

Thomas’ experience with the risen Lord set him on fire. “My Lord and My God,” he exclaimed when he saw the nail marks in Jesus’ arms.

Whether we pray for a sign or not, we can all experience the risen Lord. Be open to the Holy Spirit…Struggle with your faith if you have questions and problems. Get involved with ministry. And when you experience the risen Lord again, let that flame within you spread like wildfire. Pass that torch of love on to everyone you meet (540 Words).

Acts 2: 42-47
They devoted themselves to the teaching of the apostles and to the communal life, to the breaking of the bread and to the prayers. Awe came upon everyone, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one's need. Every day they devoted themselves to meeting together in the temple area and to breaking bread in their homes. They ate their meals with exultation and sincerity of heart, praising God and enjoying favor with all the people. And every day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.

1 Pt 1: 3-9
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, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you who by the power of God are safeguarded through faith, to a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the final time. In this you rejoice, although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Although you have not seen him you love him; even though you do not see him now yet believe in him, you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, as you attain the goal of (your) faith, the salvation of your souls.

Jn 20: 19-31
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, "Peace be with you." When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. (Jesus) said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained." Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples said to him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nailmarks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe." Now a week later his disciples were again inside and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe." Thomas answered and said to him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed." Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of (his) disciples that are not written in this book. But these are written that you may (come to) believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through this belief you may have life in his name

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