Well, The Feast! So firstly, I must offer some thanks to everyone who helped make the Christmas festivities go so well. The Church looks beautiful thanks to Shirley and the Environment team who throughout the year give faithful service making sure the interior of the church reflects and celebrates the seasons and Feasts. I want to thank all those who came and helped on Gaudate Sunday to festoon the church and gathering area with lights. Our musicians, servers, liturgical ministers and my fellow brothers and deacons who all made sure we welcomed the child Jesus, the Emmanuel, into the heart of our Catholic community. Also I want to thank the teams at St Anthony’s, Los Alamos and San Ramon, Sisquoc, for their faithful service, not just this season but all through the year.
The Season has started and is underway We are in the twilight zone now between Christmas and New Year, BUT please note various smaller feasts of the season: St Stephen the first Martyr, St John the Evangelist, Holy Family, Holy Innocents, Holy Name, Mary, Mother of God, Epiphany, Baptism of the Lord. Secular society, or more really the commercialism of Christmas, starts in September and ends on 24/25th! We start on the 25th and go on until The Baptism of the Lord on 12th January. So please continue the party! Be counter-cultural, why not come to a weekday Mass? Keep your decorations up until 12th night (Epiphany). We must however always remember the heart of the festival season…the giftedness of God in the presence of Christ on earth. We recognize the Child as the Merciful Word of God made Flesh.
May I offer a hint for New Year’s resolutions? If you make a New Year’s resolution, make one that is realistic and not going to dent your ego because it is too ambitious and is broken within a week! Think smaller in order, after success, to walk taller! May I suggest three resolutions? Could we all include more thanksgiving prayer in our daily lives and can we double our efforts to contribute to the life of the parish? Could we also reach out to someone who is a Catholic but is somewhat disaffected with the Church and invite and encourage them back to fuller practice of their faith?
May God bless you, your families, and the week ahead,
Fr Aidan Peter