Today we celebrate the 4th Sunday of Easter, which is traditionally known as Good Shepherd Sunday. Our gospel passage today gives us the image of Jesus as the Good Shepherd. A shepherd is one who guides their flock to green and restful pastures. As your pastor, the Bishop has chosen me to be your shepherd. It is my prayer every single day that God our Almighty Father continues to strengthen me to be a good, holy and gentle shepherd acting in the image and likeness of Christ.
As is the custom in Rome, our Holy Father Pope Francis will ordain new priests for the Diocese of Rome. In his very first priesthood ordination as Bishop of Rome and Supreme Pontiff, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI spoke in his homily of how the shepherd gives of himself in the Most Holy Eucharist. He said, “The shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The mystery of the Cross is at the center of Jesus' service as a shepherd: it is the great service that he renders to all of us. He gives himself and not only in a distant past. In the Holy Eucharist he does so every day, he gives himself through our hands, he gives himself to us. For this good reason the Holy Eucharist, in which the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross remains continually present, truly present among us, is rightly at the center of priestly life. And with this as our starting point, we also learn what celebrating the Eucharist properly means: it is an encounter with the Lord, who strips himself of his divine glory for our sake, allows himself be humiliated to the point of death on the Cross and thus gives himself to each one of us”.
On this Good Shepherd Sunday, I ask you to pray for all priests throughout the world, most especially for Father Kingsley and myself. Pray that the Lord will continue to call more young men to this most awesome vocation that is the priesthood of Jesus Christ, to be a good and holy shepherd for God’s people and the Church.
Solemn Mass of Rededication at Holy Rosary Church
On Sunday May 21 we will celebrate a Solemn Mass of Rededication for Holy Rosary Church. As you know, we have had the opportunity to restore this beautiful 128-year-old church. We are happy to welcome Bishop Raymond Chappetto, Vicar General of the Diocese of Brooklyn as celebrant and homilist. We will also welcome back some of the former priests of Holy Rosary Church. The Mass will begin at 3:00PM. There will not be a 9:00AM Mass at Holy Rosary that day, but the Masses at Our Lady of Victory and St. Peter Claver will remain the same that day. Please invite friends and family back to Holy Rosary for this most beautiful and historic Mass.
Knights of Columbus Recruitment Drive and Silver Rose
On Sunday May 21 we will welcome the Knights of Columbus to Our Lady of Victory Church. They will have a recruitment drive for men who may be interested in becoming Knights. They will also bring with them the silver rose, symbolizing God’s peace and love throughout the world. They will be present at the 10:15AM Mass at Our Lady of Victory Church.
Have a great week,
Father Alonzo Cox