May 30, 2021 – Father’s Ramblings

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

This past Sunday was Pentecost Sunday. As we celebrated the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles, we also marked a year (more or less) of being reopened for Mass after lockdown. Being free to gather again for Mass last year certainly added a great deal of joy to our celebration. Pentecost this year marked the first Sunday we had ropes off the pews and many masks off faces. This was another great reason to celebrate.

I know many have not been to Mass at the parishes in a while because restrictions have led you elsewhere, so I just want to give you a brief update. Masks are no longer required for those who have been vaccinated. The ropes have come off the pews, and we are no longer enforcing social distancing measures at Mass. This means there is no longer a noon Mass on Sunday, and you no longer need to sign up for Mass.

The parishes are still finding our way through these strange times as all of you are as well. Orders and instructions keep changing, and we keep trying to adapt. If there is one thing all of us have had to do over the past months is learn how to adapt to an ever-changing situation. It is a useful skill to be sure, but one that I am sure we all want to put on a shelf for a while so we can work on other skills.

We aren’t there yet, so we keep moving forward and adapting as we go along. This means we are all called to practice that virtue that we all know we need but don’t always like: patience. Many things are not what we want them to be (believe me, I know), but we need to keep moving. It is easy when some restrictions are lifted to want to move even further ahead (the whole inch and mile thing), but what we need is patience. We are where we are with its strange mix of opportunities and hurdles; let’s enjoy what we have right in front of us.

I say this not to be a downer but so we can enjoy what we do have. If we are always anxious about the next step, the more that we want, it is hard to appreciate what we do have. Moreover, we should not forget those who have real health concerns. The virus is still out there and people in our midst have real health concerns. God’s commandment is to love our neighbor, so let’s not forget to look out for our neighbors in the midst of all these changes.

Another thing we should never forget is to be grateful. In spite of the challenges, there have been many things to be grateful for over the past year. I am grateful for the staff and volunteers at the parishes that have kept the ships running. I am grateful for all those who for months continued to sign up for Mass and wore masks long after they were tired of it. I am grateful that while some people did get the Covid (from school, work, etc.) it never became a serious issue at the parishes. There is always something to be grateful for.

One thing I have been continually grateful for is your continued support of the parishes. Money isn’t everything, but it is important. I will always ask for more because there is always more that needs to be fixed, updated, or something, but I am very grateful for your continued support of the parishes. We can’t do what we do without you.

Speaking of money, if you haven’t filled out your CSA pledge card yet, please do so and turn it in. Remember, any money raised over the assessed amount will come back to the parish and won’t be assessed next year.

With Memorial Day fast approaching, summer (unofficially) is here. I hope and pray that this summer, with whatever strangeness continues, is a time of rest and relaxation for you. I know many of you will be heading north to cabins or elsewhere on vacation. I hope your travels are safe, and I look forward to seeing you when you return.

May the Lord bless you and keep you!

–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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