Twenty-first Sunday of the Year


Dear friends in Christ

We have just returned from our Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes, giving thanks for the graces and blessings of the last days. In shrines like Lourdes we see great gatherings of the children of the Church, gathered by Mary, to be close to Jesus in the Mass and in the Blessed Sacrament. Our Lord, through His redemptive love, is the focal point of all mankind. This is what the Prophet Isaiah foretells in the First Reading of the Mass this Sunday: a great calling of all people to faith and salvation, without distinction of language, race or social status. Likewise in the Gospel, when asked who will be saved, Jesus responds  by telling us to enter by the narrow door. He goes on to teach His disciples that in order to enter His kingdom - which is the only thing that counts - it is not enough to belong to the Chosen People, or to have a false confidence in Him. All the divine privileges which we have been given are not enough either.  What is needed is a faith with works, the kind of faith to which we have all been called.  The image of the ancient Patriarchs - Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, represented in the artwork this week - remind us further that we are called to inherit the same life which they have with God, because of their faithfulness.  All of mankind has a vocation to go to Heaven, Christ’s definitive kingdom. This is what we have been born for, because God desires all men to be saved.  As we live and work and have our existence on earth, may we never lose sight of this great goal, the high dignity to which we are called, now and in eternity.         God bless you!

Msgr Kevin Hale