April 26, 2020 – Father’s Ramblings

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, The Lord is Risen! He is truly Risen!

…and the strangeness continues. One of the strange things about this time is how to celebrate the good events of life (please see our Faith & Friends). Normally there would be parties and such, but obviously much of that is not happening. For example, my parents’ wedding anniversary is this Friday (24th), but we won’t be able to do much. Before anybody says anything, yes, I will be calling them.

There are of course birthdays during this time. Many people were to have celebrated graduations. New babies have been born. People were to wed during this time. Many wonderful things have happened or should have happened, but they have gotten clouded over by the current situation.

Some of these things can still be celebrated well, even with less fanfare. A low key birthday party won’t hurt anyone. A few things can be postponed with some trouble, but they can still happen. Assuming things really do start getting back to normal, a graduation party can happen later in the summer than initially intended. Some events will be postponed but will have greater challenges. Chances are the wedding and reception will not be what the bride and groom thought it would be. Some things we will miss entirely. There is no getting back not being able to hold your new grandbaby for weeks or even months.

It is worth our time to take stock of these things. First, some people might come to mind who are having a harder time than we are because of what has happened. We have a new opportunity to reach out and encourage our neighbor. Second, it helps us to keep our lives in perspective. If the worst thing that has happened is a missed birthday party, then we are doing pretty well. Third, if something truly important has been taken from us, then we do need to take some time and be attentive to our loss. As Christ died and rose, we grieve that we might find new peace and joy in the Lord.

In our life of faith many things have been delayed as well. Many of our children were to be Confirmed at the beginning of April. Others were to make their First Communions during this time. Others were to join the Church at the Easter Vigil. All these Sacraments will take place at some point, but they might not happen in the same way. Coming into the Church outside the Easter Vigil likely means there will be less fanfare.

There are brothers and sisters in our midst who deserve our prayers and our encouragement. There is no substitute for participating in the life of the Lord through the Sacraments. The Lord works in our lives in many ways, but the Sacraments are the primary ways He has chosen to effect the new life of grace and the Holy Spirit. Those of you who have been receiving the Eucharist for years have, over the past few weeks, gotten a sense of what it means to go without the Lord in the Eucharist. It is different to say the least.

We have brothers and sisters who are having their greater participation in the Lord delayed. Let’s lift them up in prayer as their time of preparation continues. It would be easy to just assume things are on hold, that life will just pick up where it left off. Better than that, though, would to be even more prepared, more ready, more open, to receive the Lord through the Sacraments. It is true for all of us: the more open we are to receive the Lord, the more we will receive from Him. Let’s pray that this extra time of waiting helps our brothers and sisters do just this.

As always, let’s keep each other in our prayers. This event has affected all of us in different ways and to different degrees. Lifting up each other in prayer, offering up our sacrifices during this time, it will help us all come through with greater grace and holiness. Whatever else may be the fallout, having grown closer to the Lord through a deeper participation in His Passion, Death, and Resurrection will be for us a good we cannot quantify in dollars. May the peace of God be with you always.

–Fr. Ferris

Rev. Aaron Ferris
Rev. Aaron R. Ferris Ordination Date: June 6, 2009 Pastor, St. Anthony Parish (Saranac) and St. Mary’s Parish (Lowell) 402 Amity Street Lowell, MI 49331 Phone: 616-897-9820
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