Parish Picnic

04-16-2023Weekly ReflectionFr Charlie Goraieb

Dear Friends,

I begin by expressing my gratitude to all of you who helped make Saturday’s Parish Picnic a great day. I especially thank Ashley Hall, Jamon Reval, Knights of Columbus, School Dad’s Club, St Therese Group, Boy Scouts, Tim States, Coach Baker, Mrs. Knox, OLMC Jr High students and all who gave their time and talent to facilitate a joyful community day for the parish.

Every year, on this Feast of the Divine Mercy, I can’t help but think about Pope St John Paul the Great who instituted this Feast in the universal calendar of the Church. And, as to show His approval of His servant’s devotion, the Lord allowed this great saint to die on the eve of this Feast in 2005. I pray that all of us will find our unique relationship to this day in which we honor the Lord for His unqualified love and tender mercy to us, but also inspire us to demonstrate that same mercy to others.

For Our Lady of Mt Carmel Parish, the Feast Day this year was marked with a ceremonial Blessing of the Ground on which the new Divine Mercy Chapel will be built. My deep and sincere “thank you” to Bishop Olmsted for leading us in this ceremony. The Bishop played an essential role 16 months ago as he discerned that the chapel was indeed God’s idea and that we were to move forward with it. So, it is fitting that he would lead us in this initial blessing and intercession for our efforts.

You will see there is a statue of the “Sleeping St Joseph” over in the place where the tabernacle of the new chapel will go. This image of St Joseph, who three times heard the angel revealing God’s Will to him while he was sleeping, has become very popular in seeking the intercession of the great saint.

We have already experienced some delays and setbacks due to misunderstandings and a few bureaucratic blocks. Those seem to have been ironed out, so God willing, we should be moving forward quickly from here on out. But these obstacles have only reinforced my conviction that we will need the grace of the Lord to complete the Chapel. And what better saint to draw upon for our construction than St Joseph?

(Note—using this image in this way has nothing to do with the superstitious practice of burying St Joseph upside-down in the property the owner wants sold. That practice is based on the silly idea that we can somehow coerce St Joseph to help sell the land if he doesn’t wish to remain buried upside down.)

May God bless you and your family, Fr Charlie