Pastor's Letter - September 17, 2017

The Church presents us with three readings from the Sacred Scriptures each week at Sunday Mass. This is done so that we can be exposed to more of the Bible, and can learn from the truth presented in the Word of God. Today’s lessons instruct us in the importance of forgiving others from the heart. Typically we appeal to this teaching when we desire to be forgiven, but conveniently forget it when it comes to forgiving others who have wronged us. Don’t let hatred or vengeance blacken your soul. Listen to what our God teaches us in the Scriptures.

The Church’s liturgical year is filled with many beautiful celebrations: commemorating the lives of the Saints and of the Blessed Mother, and especially celebrating the Feasts of the Lord. The Feast of the Holy Cross was celebrated this past Thursday on September 14. Hail Cross! Our only hope!! This Feast calls our attention to the means by which our Lord accomplished our salvation: the Cross. We just observed the sixteenth anniversary of the attack on 9/11. Who can forget that terrible experience of evil visited on our country? And who can forget the sign of hope which emerged from the rubble where once the Twin Towers stood? Do you remember how – seemingly miraculously – there appeared in the midst of that destruction the Cross formed by the intersection of two steel I-beams? The Cross is truly one of the deep mysteries of our Faith. God desired to have His own Son experience our own lives, and our own suffering. The Cross represents His suffering – and ours – by which we are also saved.

Over the past several weeks I have mentioned in this bulletin that the Diocesan Annual Appeal: Stewards of Hope is approaching. For 20 years now the Diocesan Annual Appeal has provided funding for many local, diocesan, national, and universal Church efforts. We will kick off the DAA in our parish next Sunday. All of our parishioners will have an opportunity to make their pledge. (Your pastor has already made his!) I ask ask all our parishioners to make a generous pledge, according to your means. Please continue to pray for the success of the Diocesan Annual Appeal.

Even though I have been your pastor for a relatively brief time (not yet 3 months), you probably have noticed that I refer regularly to the Holy Land in my homilies. I consider my initial pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2008 to be a significant spiritual event for me. At that time I resolved to lead others on pilgrimage to the Holy Land so that they too might be enriched in their faith. Fr. Kevin Louis and I will be leading a group to the Holy Land on January 21-31, 2018 - my 7th journey to the land where our Lord was born, lived, taught, performed His miracles, and accomplished our salvation by His suffering, death, and glorious resurrection. I will be giving a presentation (with photos) on the Holy Land this Thursday, September 21, from 6:30-8:00pm in the SSPP church basement. All are invited! Thank you to all who contributed to the collection to assist those who have suffered from the hurricane in Texas. If you did not have a chance to make a gift and would like to, just make a check out to SSPP and include in the memo “Hurricane Relief”, and we will forward it.

May God bless you!

Fr. Schaller

From Live and Learn and Pass It On, by H. Jackson Brown, Jr. (A compilation of wisdom from people of all ages and walks of life.)
“I’ve learned that both a young child and an old person can make me feel young.” (Age 48)
“I’ve learned that even if you’ve never had a pimple on the end of your nose before, one will show up there a week before the prom.” (Age 17)
“I’ve learned that the patience and love you show your children will surface when they reach the age of thirty.” (Age 63)