If you would read the testimony of the martyrs of our faith you would hear eye witness accounts of those women and men who didn’t run from persecution but embraced it. Such people as: St. Ignatius of Antioch (107AD), Saints Perpetua and Felicity (203AD), and even more currently, St. Charles Lwanga and 21 Companions (1886AD), and soon to be declared a Saint Archbishop Oscar Romero (1980 AD) all taught us about the strength we need to die for our faith. They often pleaded with others not to intercede on their behalf for they were confident of their journey toward the Kingdom of God. They didn’t need anyone more to teach them about Jesus and His Kingdom for as Jeremiah stated in the first reading: they believed it within their hearts. “I will place my law within them, and write it upon their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be my people” Jeremiah 31:33. This faith and certainty comes from the master teacher Himself as portrayed by the evangelist John in today’s Gospel reading. Jesus says, “I am troubled now. Yet what should I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” John 12:27-28. In this passage Jesus, as with all his followers who faced similar circumstances in their walk of martyrdom faith, looking at the threat to their lives didn’t run to escape but said, “bring it on!” This Holy Season of Lent challenges us to embrace the values of God’s Kingdom as Jesus preached and to be bold in the face of opposition and proclaim His Gospel of Justice and Peace. This season helps us to strengthen our resolve for the challenges that lie ahead. May the Martyrs of the Faith intercede for us all that God strengthen our resolve to witness to the values of His Kingdom in our everyday lives.
ST. LAWRENCE/ST. JOSEPH DAY TABLE CELEBRATION will take place on Monday, March 19th beginning at 5:00PM in the parish hall. Featured will be traditional meatless foods and donations for local ministries. The Lenten Journey Mass for the Feast of St. Joseph will follow at 6:30PM or so in the Church.
SISTER PARISH HOLY WEEK CELEBRATIONS
PALM SUNDAY – ST. MARTIN DE PORRES NEIGHBORHOOD PASSION WALK :Sunday, March 25th at 9:30AM – Procession takes about an hour. Dress accordingly. Provisions made for active participation in the Church for those unable to walk the procession.
HOLY THURSDAY – FRIENDSHIP SUPPER & MASS AT ST. MARTIN DE PORRES Thursday, March 29th 5:00PM Pot Luck Supper followed by Holy Thursday Mass at 6:30PM. Bring a dish you wish to share. Hot foods hot, cold foods cold.
GOOD FRIDAY – PASSION OF THE LORD NEIGHBORHOOD PROCESSION AT ST. LAWRENCE Friday, March 30th 3:00PM Passion Procession, (Dress accordingly), Veneration, Holy Communion. Provisions made for active participation in the Church for those unable to walk the procession.
HOLY SATURDAY – EASTER VIGIL AT NATIVITY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY Saturday, March 31st 8:00PM Readings, Baptism, Profession of Faith, Confirmation, Eucharist. Bus Service will be provided from St. Martin de Porres Parish leaving by 7:00PM.
LENTEN LEAVE THE LIGHT ON FOR YOU: CONFESSIONS will take place at both Nativity and St. Martin de Porres each Wednesday of Lent from Feb 21st to March 28th 5:00-7:00PM in the Church. Come and take advantage of this time to learn from our failures and receive healing and restoration for our lives.
CCCB: CATHOLIC CHURCHES OF CENTRAL BUFFALO PENANCE SERVICE concludes our Lenten Journey of Masses which will be held on Monday, March 26th at 6:30PM at SS. Columba Brigid Parish. Let us not miss this opportunity to bring to the light any sins living in the darkness of our lives.