Pastor’s Reflection for September 24, 2017

Dear Parishioners,

This Saturday, September 30, is the feast of St. Jerome. His was an interesting life. He was a Scripture scholar, translating most of the Old Testament from Hebrew and wrote many commentaries on the Scriptures. His translation of the Bible came to be called the Vulgate. It was quite the undertaking and Jerome prepared himself by learning Latin, Greek, Hebrew and Chaldaic. He was a mystic, spending five years in the desert so he might give himself up to prayer, penance and study. He settled in Bethlehem, where he lived in the cave believed to have been the birthplace of Christ. He died in Bethlehem in 420 at the age of 75 and his remains are buried in the Basilica of St. Mary Major.

Jerome was a strong, outspoken man. It is said that he had a bad temper but his love for God was intense. He used his pen to come after anyone who taught error. We might be missing this in our age today with so much error of the truth we find in our society. Jerome was conscious of his weakness. A pope is said to have remarked, on seeing a picture of Jerome striking his breast with a stone, “You do well to carry that stone, for without it the Church would never have canonized you.”

Jerome’s feast is a reminder of the importance of Scripture reading. To read the Scriptures is to listen to the Lord speak to us. Jerome wrote that ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ. Our purpose of life is to know Christ. That is why it is important to read the Bible.

Last weekend, our finance co-chairperson Michael Profenno spoke about our Church financial condition. I wish to reaffirm that we are financially sound and again, we thank you for your generous support to our parish. I encourage you to use electronic giving for it helps with planning our budget and it is a way to be more secure in transporting the cash collected at the weekend Masses. We have booklets that describe the spiritual activity of tithing one’s income. I ask for only a portion of your 10%. This way of giving helps us focus on Jesus as the source of our income. It helps us depend on Him for our needs.

Our next project in making some repairs will be the parlor in the rectory. This is a room where we have meetings, interviews, spiritual direction and group instructions. We plan to replace the flooring and to add new furniture. We would be grateful to receive contributions to defray the cost.

This weekend, members of our parish men’s group will be addressing the men of our parish. They are hosting a 6 week series starting Wednesday, October 10, that will give men a game plan on how to be pure in this immoral, secular society. It is a fact that 60% of church-going men view pornography on a regular basis. One study listed pornography as a contributing factor in 56% of divorce cases. Men need to support one another for they are to lead their wives and children into the kingdom of heaven. We need strong Christian men today. I would encourage the men of this parish to consider attending our men’s group.

I will be available for confession this week on Monday, September 25, from 1:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

May Jesus continue to shepherd you in all of your needs.

God love you,