Pastor's Letter - September 16, 2018

“But who do you say that I am?” Peter said to Him in reply, “You are the Christ.” This exchange between Peter and the Lord from today’s Gospel sums up an essential characteristic of our

Faith. We believe, like Peter, that Jesus is the very Son of God, the only Redeemer of the World, the Savior of mankind. Several years ago Pope Benedict XVI – while he was the head of Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith – published (with the approval of Pope John Paul II) a document called Dominus Jesus (The Lord Jesus) which restates this core belief that there is one Savior by whom all may be saved; and that the Lord established one Church. Though human sin has brought about the sad divisions in the Church which are a visible reality, nevertheless the Lord prayed that we might be one. That unity of belief and practice is to be found in the Catholic Church, which the Lord established upon the authority of the Apostles, and whose successors continue to exercise the role of shepherds. While we respect the freedom of persons, which is an inherent quality of religious belief, the truth of the Gospel impels us to follow the Lord wholeheartedly, and to lead others to that same true Faith.

On a related note, each Fall we begin the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) which is a formal period of instruction and formation in the Catholic Faith. These classes are offered every Wednesday evening. Though classes have already begun, I still want to invite to this formation program any person who is not baptized or is baptized in another Christian church, who is interested in becoming a full member of the Catholic Church.

“We are the Diocese”! With the arrival of Fall, we are beginning the Diocesan Annual Appeal for 2018-2019. You will be receiving this week a letter from me addressing our success of the past year’s DAA, and our goals for this year. Then, the following week, you will receive a letter from Bishop Callahan with information about the DAA, along with the pledge form. Look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves which is yours in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 2:3- 5) Pray for the success of the Diocesan Annual Appeal. Pray also that God will give each of us a generous heart as we seek to meet the many needs of our parish, the diocese, and throughout the world. I’ve already sent in my pledge!

May God bless you! Fr. Schaller