Good Morning St. Patrick families! What a week we have had!Â Thank you to all of our families who made this such a special week for our entire staff.Â We are incredibly grateful to you!Â This year has gone by so quickly and it’s hard to believe that our last day of school is only one week away!Â Â Please see my newsletter for important information about the upcoming week!Â Â www.smore.com/grwqd-ms-monaghan-s-message-may-10 Have a relaxing and restful weekend! KaciÂ Monaghan Principal St. Patrick School
By Fr. Matthew Brumleve
Mercy, Pope Francis says, is the very face of God. The pope also said: “Mercy makes us understand that violence, resentment, and revenge have no place in the life of a Christian.” But oh how we love those things – rather than forgiveness. . .
There once was a little boy, Johnny, who was visiting his grandparents on their farm. And his grandfather gave him a slingshot to play with out in their vast woods.
The boy practiced shooting his slingshot every day – but he could never hit what he was aiming at – trees, stumps, tin cans on fence posts. . . all were missed – why, he probably couldn’t even hit the side of the barn!
Getting a little discouraged after a week, he decided to give up on the slingshot.
But as he neared the house from walking back from the woods that day – he saw his grandmother’s pet duck. Just out of impulse, he picked up a rock, put it in the slingshot and let fly at the duck – most to his surprise – he hit the duck square in the head and killed it.
Johnny was shocked and scared. . . it was his grandmother’s pet duck! In a panic, he hid the dead duck in the woodpile – only to see his sister, Sally, watching. Sally had seen what had happened – but said nothing.
Until after lunch that day – when Grandma said, “Sally, help with the dishes.” And Sally said, “Grandma, Johnny told me HE wanted to help with the dishes, don’t you Johnny?” And she quietly whispered to him, Remember the Duck. . .
So Johnny helped with the dishes. Later, Grandpa said, “let’s go fishing.” Sally and Johnny were both ready to go – until grandma said, “I need Sally to stay and help me clean the house.” And Sally said, “Oh no, grandma – Johnny will be more than willing to say and help, won’t you Johnny?” As she quietly whispered, Remember the Duck. . . So Johnny stayed, and Sally went fishing with grandpa.
After several days of doing BOTH his chores and Sally’s, Johnny could not stand it anymore. He went to his Grandmother and confessed that he had accidently killed the duck. She knelt down, gave him a hug and said, “Sweatheart, I know. I was standing at the window and saw it all. But because I love you, I forgave you. But I was just wondering how long you would let Sally make a slave of you. . .”
Something like that happened in today’s Gospel – and happens in our lives. There was, you recall, a campfire. Around it, Peter, Jesus’ hand-picked leader of his group, denied him three times – and with swearing and cursing at that!
Then, loaded with guilt, Peter bolted from the fire and fled into the dark streets of Jerusalem. Still enslaved by his guilt, he apparently just wanted to go back to what he knew best — fishing — rather than doing that fishing for men and woman as Jesus had invited him to do.
That’s where we find him in today’s Gospel. Then, as we heard, Peter unexpectedly found himself around another campfire. This time he had the chance to affirm his love for Jesus three times – and Jesus, who was wondering just how long his guilt would make a slave of him – embraced Peter and forgave him – and set him free — just as Johnny’s grandmother did for him.
But this should not surprise us. Mercy was Jesus’ name and forgiveness was his game – not revenge. And hopefully we can all nod in agreement and be filled with gratitude that Jesus will give us a second chance as well, no matter what we do. . .
For Jesus, there is always another campfire around which to set things right – for all of us. And it is only when we are liberated from our fear, our guilt, our pain and confusion – that we can do what Jesus asks of us – just as he asked Peter:
LOVE ME: BY FEEDING MY LAMBS, BY TENDING MY SHEEP, BY FEEDING MY SHEEP – that is how we are called to follow after Christ.
And we cannot do that if we are carrying around the weight of the past – being held back by grudges, or seeking to harm or retaliate against another – by reminding them of the ducks they have slain. . .
Mercy: is the very face of God. We show mercy to others by forgiveness, and through love:
Feed my lambs.
Tend my sheep.
Feed —- my sheep.
Come, let us follow after the Lord.
Good morning St. Patrick families! It’s donut day and donut day brings a lot of excitement around here.Â :)Â Thank you to everyone who supported our Student Council by purchasing donuts!Â Â Please see the link below for my newsletter this week.Â We have a lot of important information for the days ahead and you don’t want to miss out! www.smore.com/exr0t-ms-monaghan-s-message-may-3 Have a great day, Kaci Monaghan Principal St. Patrick School
By Fr.Matthew Brumleve
During the Jubilee year of 2000: Pope John Paul II designated this 2nd Sunday of Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday.
On this Sunday, and throughout the Easter season and in fact – throughout our lives — we are invited to take up the strength of grace that comes to us from the mercy of God – and show that mercy to others.
THAT is a direct command which always comes to us in the Gospel on the 2nd Sunday of Easter. Jesus says to the disciples [and to us]: “As the Father has sent me, so I also send you.”
After saying this, Jesus then entrusts them with a special task, telling them: “receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive — are forgiven.”
This is the meaning of mercy that is presented to us by Christ: forgiveness. Not carrying around the weight of the past – not to be held back by grudges, not seeking harm or retaliation of another — but forgiveness.
The first task the risen Christ gave to his followers is to forgive one another. . . This commission is to be a concrete and visible sign of Christ’s mercy.
Today, in Pope Francis – we have a Pope who never tires of talking about mercy. “Mercy,” the Pope says, “is the face of God.”
I can do no better today than to simply read some of Pope Francis’ quotes on mercy – pausing after each one to let it soak in a bit – and then we will end with an appropriate response to mercy – singing.
Pope Francis says:
“Jesus kept his wounds so that we would experience his mercy. This can strengthen us and give us hope.”
“Let us never forget that mercy is the keystone of the life of faith –and a concrete way with which we give visibility to the Resurrection of Christ.”
“We are all sinners but God heals us with an abundance of grace and mercy and tenderness. We are called to go and do likewise.”
“Mercy is a verb – not a noun: we have to show mercy in order to receive mercy. We cannot meditate on mercy without it turning into action.”
“Start by feeling compassion for the poor and the outcast – then surely you will come to realize that you, yourself, stand in need of mercy.”
“Mercy warms the heart and makes it sensitive to the needs of our brothers and sisters. Mercy commits everyone to being an instrument of justice, reconciliation and peace.”
“For it is by mercy that the Lord forgives our sins and gives us grace to practice acts of mercy in God’s name.”
“Mercy makes us understand that violence, resentment, and revenge have no place in the life of a Christian. The first victim is whoever lives these sentiments – because it deprives them of their own dignity.”
“The most important thing in the life of every man and woman is not that they should never fall along the way – the important thing is always to get back up – not staying on the ground and licking your wounds. God’s mercy helps us to do that – to get back up — and our mercy can help others do it.”
“If our hearts are closed – if our hearts are made of stone – the stones quickly find their way into our hands and we are ready to throw them. So open your heart to mercy – -and let go of the stones.”
“God never tires of forgiving us; we are the ones who tire of seeking God’s mercy,”
“Let the church always be a place of mercy and hope – where everyone is welcomed, loved, and forgiven.”
After meditating on mercy – how can we keep from singing? So I invite you to turn to #494 in the hymnals to learn a simple refrain. . .
Mighty Spirit of our Lord. . .
Give us faith to live your word.
You have loved us as your own. . .
Make us turn to you alone.
May we be a blessing true. . .
Christ as Lord of all we do.
Be the fountain of each soul. . .
Flow in us and make us whole.
Make us children of your light. . .
As your gospel shining bright.
God who lives beyond our death. . .
Love as near as every breath.
As the mystic St. Faustina taught us to pray:
For the sake of his sorrowful Passion – have mercy on us and on the whole world. AMEN!
By Father Matthew Brumleve
On behalf of myself and our deacons: Jim Koger and Mike Lewis,
Our Principal: Kaci Monaghan.
Early childhood director: Mary Ragan
Liturgist and financial coordinator: Robin Lamb
Religious Education Director: Jean Folken
Office Administrator: Lisa Angotti –
And anyone else I may be forgetting about –
I wish all of you a happy and holy Easter! We are glad you chose to spend part of your day with us here at St. Patrick – and hope you get to spend the rest of your day with family and friends:
Enjoying some good food, a little candy, perhaps an Easter egg hunt – but most especially just enjoying each other’s company.
The resurrection of Jesus calls us to NEW LIFE – and so may you find the strength and grace you need in this liturgy and in this Easter season – to be a witness to the resurrected Christ in your home, your place of work, here in the parish – and in your schools and neighborhoods. And to this we say: ALLEULUIA!
It was Art Linkletter who first told us years ago – that kids say the darndest things. And if we need proof of this – here are a few examples:
** An exasperated mother, whose son was always getting into mischief, finally asked him: “Carl, how do you ever expect to get into heaven?”
The boy thought it over for a moment and finally said: “Well, I’ll just run in an out //and in and out// and in and out – and keep slamming the door – until St. Peter finally says, ‘For heaven’s sake, Carl, either come in or stay out,’ —and then I’ll just stay in!”
**After listening restlessly to a long and tedious homily, a six year old boy asked his father what the priest did the rest of the week. “Oh, he stays pretty busy,” his father replied.
“He takes care of Church business, visits the sick, helps the poor. . . and then he has to rest up. You know — Speaking in public isn’t an easy job.”
The boy thought about that, and then said, “well let me tell you – listening in public— ain’t an easy job either!”
** A Sunday school teacher was telling her class the story of the Good Samaritan, in which the man was beaten, robbed, and left for dead on the side of the road.
She described the situation in vivid detail so her students would be drawn into the drama.
Then she asked the class, “If you saw a person lying on the roadside all wounded and bleeding – what would YOU do?
A thoughtful girl broke the hushed silence by saying, “I think I would throw up!”
And finally, for any friends we may have from Minnesota – and I think we have a few — A little girl from the twin cities came home from Sunday school with a frown on her face and a real attitude. . .
“I am NEVER going back there anymore,” she declared. “I don’t like the Bible they keep teaching us from.”
A little worried, the girl’s mother asked: “Why not?”
“Because,” said the little girl, “the Bible THEY use is always saying St. Paul this – St. Paul that. You would think that every once in a while –they could say SOMETHING about Minneapolis!!!”
There is a reason for telling such things on Easter Sunday – because I think above all else – Easter is a day for LAUGHING. . .
LAUGHING at the folly of the scribes and Pharisees and Roman officials — who thought they could silence the message Jesus was proclaiming – by silencing the messenger. . .
LAUGHING at the naiveté of the Pilate and the guards – who thought a stone – even a very big one – could contain the risen Lord.
LAUGHING at either the fear of the lack of faith on the part of the disciples that kept them hidden away – while women went to the tomb as the first day of the week was dawning.
LAUGHING perhaps even at ourselves who continue to think all of this is just too good to be true.
Yes, on Easter – we can laugh at darkness, laugh at sin, laugh at death, laugh at the power of evil: BECAUSE JESUS HAS BEEN RISEN FROM THE DEAD!
LAUGH because the TOMB IS EMPTY – the long reign of sin and death have ended!
LAUGH because our salvation has been won FOR US – we don’t have to do anything to earn it!
LAUGH for life is now perfected in Jesus the son!
AND OUR RESPONSE TO THIS CAN’T HELP BUT BE:
Alleluia, alleluia. Alleluia! Happy Easter!