Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
It is hard to believe that it has been two months since we have had public Masses offered in our churches. This is a long time for us to be separated from our worship and from one another. I am delighted to see how many people are joining in for Mass through Facebook Live each week. I would also remind you that the Mass can be viewed on the parish website at 9:30 as well. The Mass is also available to be replayed at a later time.
In this Sunday’s Gospel passage, Jesus continues his “Farewell Discourse” to his disciples, preparing them for his departure from them both in his Passion and death, but also in his ascent to the Father. Knowing the void there will be in their lives from his departure, he promises to send his Spirit to be with them. This is a reminder to us that, even in those times when God appears to be so far from us He, in fact, remains infinitely close to us. It reminds us, also, that God can use the worst of times to reveal to us his presence and work some good in our lives.
As we continue these days of social distancing, even though talk has started to move towards “opening up,” it is important that we not fail to look back on the past few months, as difficult as they have been, to try to see how Jesus has been present to us, using this pandemic to work some good in our lives. Perhaps for some, in spite of being “closed in” with our loved ones day after day, we have come to a better understanding of them. Perhaps in spite of being “stuck at home” we have gotten to know our neighbor better. Perhaps in spite of not being able to work, we have found a way to help someone in need. Some of us have endured more than others in these days. Let us seek to recognize also, the ways in which Jesus has used these days to draw us closer to him and reveal his closeness to us.