Praise be Jesus Christ now and forever!
Have you ever heard these words at a funeral? “Well, it was just his (or her) time. God had wanted him (or her) up in heaven.” We might say this in an effort to comfort the suffering, or to make sense of an untimely death which simply seems unfair, inappropriate, or wrong.
The reason we think this is—death is all of these things! But to comfort someone, why not proclaim boldly as the first reading from Wisdom does today: “God did not make death.” And “God does not delight in the death of the living.”
Death was never part of God’s perfect plan for the creation. We were made in God’s image never to die. But “…Through the devil’s envy, death entered the world.” So death belongs to the devil, not to God. Death is evil, and it came through sin.
In the gospel today, Jesus tries to show us the far bigger picture. Yes, the individual healings are Jesus showing us God’s will and power to heal and bring new life; but that is the smaller picture because even those Jesus heals must still die. The bigger picture is to have faith in Jesus Himself, because The purpose of his life, death and rising is to reconnect the universe to God. “Your faith has saved you!”
Jesus’ miracles only point to the deeper healing by which Jesus overcomes the devil’s envy and the devil’s puny power in the world. Jesus, and only Jesus, can reinstate the perfect will of the Creator for the eternal life and wholeness of all creatures.
The Hospice Movement shows us how to grieve our losses—by witnessing to both life and death—sitting, listening, crying, laughing. And let us keep holding on to Jesus’ words “Do not fear, only believe.”
WELCOME to all those visiting our parish this weekend and thank you for joining us in the celebration of the Eucharist at St .Rose Church. Enjoy the Fourth of July holiday this Wednesday with your family and friends…please join us for Mass either at 6:45 or 9:00 a.m. as we thank God for the freedoms we enjoy as a nation and as we pray for our country. May God bless you and keep you always in His Love, and may God bless America!
Joyfully in the Lord,
A PRAYER FOR OUR NATION
Gracious and loving God, we come to you in humble prayer for the United States of America.
Bless our President. Give him wisdom and strength to serve the American people and lead our country in ways that are pleasing to you.
Bless our Congress. Instill in them knowledge and understanding to enact laws that protect the sanctity of life—from the unborn to the elderly; and promote the good of all people.
Bless the people of the United States. Make us aware of our responsibility as citizens to uphold the principles of life, liberty, justice, and equality.
Send your Holy Spirit upon our beloved country. Make us people of faith in time of uncertainty. Make us people of hope in times of trouble. Make us people of compassion with those who are less fortunate. Make us people of peace in our homes, our communities, our country, and our world.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen.
Rev. Msgr. Edward J. Arnister
Pastor, St. Rose Parish