From the Pastor
Time really flies, we just celebrated Christmas, and now we are celebrating the Baptism of the Lord. Today we see Jesus as an adult, and beginning his public ministry. He has been baptized by his cousin John, anointed by the Holy Spirit, and commissioned to bring forth justice to the nations. From now on, Jesus begins his public life in proclaiming the Kingdom of God, announcing to all that God is doing something new..
Since March of 2020, our individual and collective lives have shifted. The pandemic crisis brought a reordering of our daily lives. It made even more apparent how fragile and interconnected we are and the disparities in our society that make some more vulnerable to the virus than others. Now, the long-awaited vaccine is being distributed. Though there are still dark days ahead and it will take more time before precautions like masks, physical distancing, and avoiding gatherings can safely be put aside, that change is coming. We are shifting. We pray that a better future is ahead of us.
Today is an opportunity for all of us to reflect on our own baptism. It is not something that only happened a long time ago – it is the beginning of a lifelong journey. It is the beginning of a process of growing into the Body of Christ as its members. Our baptism is essentially a community experience. It involves active participation in the life of the Church and not just passive membership.
Perhaps we could paraphrase the words of John F. Kennedy in his inaugural address and consider – “ask not what the Church can do for you but what you can do for the Church?” Let us be the best we can be for God and for each other. May the Lord give us the courage and wisdom to change and become better followers of Jesus Christ.
Fr. Oscar Mendez, OFM
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