Today we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord. This feast day will liturgically bring the Christmas season to an end. This week we move into Ordinary Time until the middle of February when we will begin the season of Lent with Ash Wednesday. In other countries around the world, many churches continue to keep the nativity scene up until February 2, which is the Presentation of the Lord. That custom is not widely practiced here in the United States, but we are invited to keep the image of the nativity alive in our hearts. It is my hope that these last weeks of Christmas was a time of joyful celebration and thanksgiving, even though many of us were unable to celebrate with family and friends because of the pandemic. As we come to this feast day, we are reminded in today’s gospel that Jesus is the beloved Son of God. We hear John the Baptist tell us that Christ will baptize us with the Holy Spirit. We must allow the Holy Spirit to be at work in our lives so that we can live in the image and likeness of Christ. As baptized members of the mystical Body of Christ, we pray that Jesus will continue to be at the center of our lives, now and forever.
Christmas Thank You!
I want to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your thoughtful and kind tokens of appreciation and Christmas gifts to both Father Franklin and I. Both of us are very blessed to journey with all of you closer to Christ. As Pastor, I also want to thank you for your financial generosity this Christmas season. Between the masses for Christmas and New Year’s, we saw an increase in the collection baskets. Thank you!! I also want to thank all of the liturgical ministers who made our liturgies for Christmas so beautiful and prayerful which included our lectors, extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, ushers and altar servers. I also want to thank our parish choir under the direction of Ms. Joan Delahunt and Mr. Joseph Murray. They worked very hard over these last weeks with rehearsals to make our liturgies uplifting. We look forward in just a few weeks to begin the solemn season of Lent, preparing ourselves for the joys of Easter.
St. Peter Claver Church 100th Anniversary
We have looked forward over these last few months to celebrating with joy the 100th anniversary of the establishment of St. Peter Claver Church. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, we have not had the opportunity to gather in celebration the way that we would have. Our anniversary committee have come up with some creative ideas to commemorate this milestone. Of course, with every anniversary, there will be a gala dinner and a fundraising raffle. Our gala dinner has been scheduled for Friday, May 21, 2021 to be held at Glenn Terrace. Not knowing what the Spring will bring us with the coronavirus, we still have secured the date. If it is unable to take place, the date will be changed and you will have the option to have your money refunded. Raffles are available for $10 per ticket which will be on sale this week after all of the masses at each of the three churches. Prizes include an Apple iWatch, Apple iPad, a Smart TV with Bose sound bar with CD player and a $500 gift card. All proceeds will go to support St. Peter Claver Church.
Wishing you a blessed and peaceful week,
Father Alonzo Q. Cox