Our Gospel on this Fifth Sunday of Lent portrays the final sign of Jesus’ divinity and humanity: The Raising of Lazarus from the dead! Jesus comes to the tomb of his dear friend Lazarus. The Gospel of John tells us that “Jesus wept.” The Son of God comes to the tomb and is filled with the deepest human emotions. So much so that those around Mary and Martha remark: “See how much he loved him!”
But this story does not end here in death and grief. Jesus calls out, “Lazarus, come out!” And then says, “Untie him and let him go!” As we draw closer to Easter and Christ’s own resurrection from the dead, the Church gives us this tremendous event of divine power to remind us all of our own rising to new life. Jesus tells Martha that her brother will rise and then asks her: “Do you believe this?” The Lord Jesus asks us this same question today. Let us respond as did Martha: “Yes, Lord, I do believe!”
Many have been asking about what do with their “Operation Rice Bowl” contributions. You may mail a check to the parish or you may hold on to them until a later date when, God willing, we can collect them.
Next Sunday is Palm Sunday. Since there will be no public Masses that day, we will once again live stream Mass at 10:00 a.m. and Noon as well as adding a Mass at 8:00 a.m. You may take part in these Masses by going to our website and clicking on “Live Stream”. Please do this about fifteen minutes before the Mass you are watching for some lovely prelude music.
We will be distributing blessed palms on Saturday, April 4th, the day before Palm Sunday, between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. You may drive to the Mission and form a “car procession” in one of the three driveways: the parish entrance at Parish Way, the main driveway to the Mission Church or the driveway leading to the Retreat Center. Blessed palms will be distributed to you in your cars. You will also have the opportunity to make your offertory donation at the same me. For your safety, we recommend that you wear a mask if you have one. We will be wearing a mask and gloves to distribute the palms. I think this is pretty creative, right?
With the continuation of the “stay at home” policy, we will not celebrate any public liturgies during Holy Week. However, we will be live-streaming the beautiful liturgies of The Sacred Three Days. Also, the Diocese will be live streaming these liturgies. I will give you more information in next Sunday’s bulletin.
In closing, on behalf of the Parish and Mission staff and Friars, please know that we continue to pray for all of you and we ask your prayers for us. Stay healthy and take care of one another!
Love, Fr. Vince Mesi, OFM