Bulletin (May 16, 2004)

Many of you have seen the Lord of the Rings trilogy – or read the books. The story centers on a ring which gives enormous powers to the person who possesses it. If the ring falls into the wrong hands, it will mean the destruction and enslavement of the world. But it can corrupt even good people. In fact, the more ambitious and more gifted a person is, the greater the corruption. The one finally chosen to carry the ring is a “hobbit.” They are a special race whose highest ambition is to tend their gardens and to eat at least six meals a day. But even a hobbit can be corrupted by the lure of the ring – as Frodo and his companion Samwise discover.

These past two weeks all of us have been shocked and saddened by the photos of abuse which occurred in the Abu Ghraib prison. It was terrible to see young American men and women mistreating and humiliating Iraqi prisoners. We naturally want those responsible to be tried and brought to justice. At the same time, it should provide an opportunity to reflect on the power of evil, a power which can bring even those who seem “good” to act cruelly toward their fellow human beings.

The fact that we are subject to temptation (oftentimes disguised as something justified) should make us aware of the need for God’s grace. In the Lord of the Rings story, no one ultimately had the ability to resist the temptation of the one ring. It had to be destroyed. So it is with sin in our lives. Even though all of us will be plagued with certain temptations right up till the ends of our lives, only the power of God’s grace can bring us safely home.

Two and a half weeks ago, our young people received the Sacrament of Confirmation. By it they were sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit. It placed a mark or character upon their souls which will last for this life and for all eternity. They and all of us need to rely on the power of the Holy Spirit in order to realize our ultimate purpose.

Last week I promised some pictures of the Confirmation ceremony. Courtesy of Dan Parfait and Todd Aylard, the following pictures are from the April 28 Confirmation Mass: /confirmation2004.html

A final note: this Monday, I will be making a presentation to the Archdiocesan Parochial Revolving Fund (PRF). Tom Weber and some representatives of our council will accompany me. We need approval from the PRF to move ahead with the Capital Campaign in order to address the various building needs of our parish. Please pray for a favorable response.

Como prometí la semana pasada, quisiera compartir con Uds. unas fotos de la Confirmación. En la ceremonia nuestros jóvenes recibieron el sello del Espíritu Santo que confiere un carácter que dura para esta vida y para la eternidad. Agradecimientos a Todd Aylard y Dan Parfait que previeron las fotos.

Una nota final: El día Lunes haré una presensación al Parochial Revolving Fund (PRF). Es un fondo común de las parroquias de la Arquidiócesis. Necesitamos su aprobación para avanzar con nuestra Campaña Capital. La Campaña es bien importante para poder hacer las reparaciones necesarias de los techos de la iglesia, escuela y Ailbe House; los refuerzos sísmicos de la escuela, el refaccionar del sótano de la escuela para el uso de todos y la extensión del parking. Favor de rezar para que haya una buena respuesta a este proyecto. El PRF no da una donación, sino un préstamo basado en los compromisos recibidos pro medio de una Campaña Capital.