PASTOR'S CORNER

Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, October 24
Dear Brothers and Sisters,

 

This week, as we end the month of the Rosary and begin the
month of November, we begin with two important celebration
that help define the identity of the Church. Next Monday,
November 1st, the Solemnity of All Saints, is usually a Holy
Day of Obligation; this year, however, is not a Holy Day of
Obligation because it falls on a Monday, and the U.S. Bishops
have decided it is too demanding on you to attend Holy Mass
two days in a row as an obligation. This is a celebration of the
Triumph of Christ. Through the Passion, Death, and
Resurrection of the Lord the gates of Heaven were opened, and
so too, the flood gates of God’s mercy. With this Solemnity, the
One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church celebrates who she
is as the “Communion of Saints.” As the Catechism teaches,
“We believe in the communion of all the faithful of Christ, those
who are pilgrims on earth, the dead who are being purified,
and the blessed in heaven, all together forming the Church; and
we believe that in this communion, the merciful love of God and
his saints are always attentive to our prayers”(#962).
On Monday, November 1st, the two Mass we will celebrate the
blessed in heaven, the “Church Triumphant.” This part of the
Church is made up of all those who are already enjoying the
Beatific Vision. Mary, the mother of Jesus, Saints Peter,
Mary Magdalene, Maria Goretti, Monica, Augustine, Faustina,
John Paul II, etc. … , and perhaps some who you may have
known personally during your life time, who have already
arrived to their eternal reward. The following day, Tuesday,
November 2, and for the rest of the month of November, we
will be praying for, and remembering the dead who are being
purified; these are the souls in purgatory, the “Church Suffering.”
This is a joyful suffering in anticipation of seeing God
face to face. The reality is that most, at the moment of death
still have some residue of sin and need to be purified by the
Blood of the Lamb shed for us on the cross. Purgatory is the
anti-chamber of heaven, or, the laundry room, where our white
baptismal garment is washed clean so that we can be dressed
appropriately for the heavenly banquet feast. Since Old
Testament times it has been a pious tradition and an act of
charity to pray for the dead. These souls cannot pray for
themselves and so need our prayers. We, those who are
pilgrims on earth, are the “Church Militant,” fighting the good
fight as Saint Paul says. We are part of the “Communion of
Saints,” gathered together singing “Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus
Dominus Deus Sabaoth.” “Holy, Holy, Holy Lord, God of
Hosts.” As we approach All Souls Day, please be aware that
there will be a coffin in our outdoor church. This is a cultural
tradition in many parts of the world. This is a reminder to us of
those who have died and are still in need of our prayers.
By now you should have received your monthly donation
envelops, among which you will find the one for All Souls Day.
There is space on the envelop for you to write the names of
your beloved dead that you wish for me to remember in the
Holy Masses that will be celebrated throughout the month of
November. I will keep these names at the altar for the entire
month. I also ask that each of you, in your charity, to not only
remember your own loved ones in your prayers, but all who
have died.


Blessings to all,

Fr. Steven Guitron