As employment positions open up and are posted publicly, it never fails that we receive unsolicited calls from people who intercede for certain candidates who have applied for the positions. Even though they may not be on their respective reference listings, these calls advocate for their acquaintances. This weekend’s biblical lessons feature the theme of “Intercessory Prayer and Petition” on behalf of others. In the first reading from Genesis chapter eighteen, Abraham intercedes for the people that may be “just” within the town of Sodom, whom God revealed will be destroyed because of the outcry of their sinfulness. So intimate was the relationship between Abraham and God Almighty, that respectfully Abraham could dialogue and reason with God about the situation. This “intimacy” with God is further displayed in the unique relationship of the incarnated Son of God and in his teaching of a pattern of prayer that we too should adopt. Jesus called God Almighty, His Father. So too did He teach us that respectfully we too could call God Almighty, “Our Father,” “Our Abba,” “Our Daddy….” Though intimate we remain respectful as we pray “hallowed be your name.” St. Luke goes on after revealing this “pattern of prayer” to give examples of perseverance in prayer and how prayer without ceasing will yield benefits. The example of the persistent neighbor rings true for most of us in other forms: the persistent child who may hang upon us with their requests, the endless amount of homeless persons begging for our time and attention, etc. Who among us would not become generous just to stop the petitioning? In much the same way we are all called upon to be intercessory prayer partners for one another. We are called to storm heaven appealing for the needs of one another, our church family, our sister communities, our metropolitan area, our country and our world. May the Lord hear our petition and come to our assistance.
FAMILY REUNIFICATION In 2003, former “Lost Boy” of Sudan, Fidele Diing Dhan, who I often called my miracle son, joined me in at the St. Martin de Porres residence while attending UB for studies. Many years and many miracles have happened since that time. For Fidele: a BA degree in Psychology, USA Citizenship, his first return to search out and find his family after nineteen years apart, his tribal wedding, the relocation of fifteen members of his immediate family to Kampala Uganda searching for food, schooling, and better health care, the birth of each of his four children, and the arrival of his first born son who joined us now at the St. Lawrence residence. Now, after so much time the door has opened for Fidele’s wife Abang, and his three younger children to join him in USA. On Wednesday, July 27th in the early evening, Fidele and his son Diing Diing will welcome to USA Abang and the three additional children of their family. It will be a time of great rejoicing. We pray for their safe journey. They will remain with us at St. Lawrence for a brief time of enculturation and then be relocated to their first family’s apartment/home in the USA. May God bless my son Fidele, his boy Diing, his wife Abang, daughters Abuk and Lok and baby son Gau.
THANK YOU FR. MARK… We have been informed from the clergy personnel office that Fr. Mark will remain in residence with us at Nativity for a few weeks but soon will receive a new ministry assignment within our Diocese. We thank Fr. Mark for accepting the challenge of working on our ministry team for this past year and pray for his success in his next assignment.
MASS TIME ADJUSTMENT…. Last year when we began with three clergy on our multi-parish team, members of the 12Noon Mass requested to return to the 10am scheduled time. Due to future staff changes, financial considerations, and the inability of our parish priests to accommodate the 10am Mass time, beginning August 7th, the 10:00AM Mass will again return to 12:00Noon. We are sorry for the needed change but necessity requires it. Thank You.
ST. MARTIN DE PORRES PARISH ANNUAL FAMILY PICNIC will take place on Sunday, August 21st at the Gazebo shelter of Como Park beginning with Gospel Mass at 12Noon followed by lunch. Everyone is encouraged to bring your contribution to the parish’s community table. Hot Dogs and Hamburgers will be provided.