January 24, 2021

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

     This week we celebrated the feast of OUR LADY OF ALTA GRACIA - Our Lady of a high grace with our Dominican community. It is the image on which the Blessed Mother together with St Joseph presents Jesus to us lying in the manger. Literally She gives Him to us. The Blessed Mother didn’t receive Jesus for herself but for the whole humanity. Now the decision is our to respond.

Around the year we have placed the image above the steps of entrance to Religious Education office in the basement of the church. We can say that we keep coming to the Blessed Mother to adore Christ, to be enlightened, blessed and saved by him.

     Humanity searches for God, because it searches for the answers to all fundamental questions regarding our existence, our origin, our destiny. Those questions put us face to face with our deepest thoughts and longing for fullness, for fulfillment, found in the depths of our hearts. That longing to know, to love and to be loved, the longing to belong to that fullness, it’s longing for God.

     Christmas is the beginning of the answer to those questions and longings. It is an experience of belonging to God, as we perceive that Christ wants to belong to us all, and to everyone individually. Emmanuel - God with us, God is with me. He belongs to me, I belong to him. He belongs to the earth, we belong to heaven.

     In the Gospel of this Sunday we are told - this is the time of fulfillment - the fullness is given to us in Christ. Take it or miss it. Take it for what it is and be transformed by it, or miss it and you will never experience the fullness and fulfillment of those longings. Be touched by Christ, and never be alone, never be the same, be transformed, be loved, be fulfilled, be happy, be saved!!! Christ’s call to follow becomes more personal and involves us more completely with our life to be dedicated to him as our primary goal, as it became for the Apostles who left the nets and their father and followed him.

     How much Christ is asking from me? How much time, how much life, how much attention and dedication??? The answer can be made only by each of us personally. How much space do I give him in my heart, in my life??? What do I expect from Him and what is it that He expects from me ???

     Jonah responded with urgency and so did people on Nineveh. St Paul reminds us of the passing of this world in second reading. The chance to respond to God is unique for each one of us. No one can do it for me but me. It’s mine response to Christ, to God in god’s call to save me.

God bless everyone !!! God loves You !!!

Fr. Stan