As we began Christmas season this past week with beautiful Masses, I gave thanks to the Infant Jesus for watching over our parish throughout this challenging year. I would like to thank all those who took their time and energy to decorate our church and made these liturgies uplifting for those who attended. The Novena to Our Lady of Guadalupe, Simbang Gabi Masses and Christmas Tree lighting allowed us to prepare for the Lord to once again enter our hearts this year. I think this year was especially done well. Thank you to all the organizers from the Hispanic Committee and Filipino Community.
In preparing to welcome the New Year, I would like to give thanks to God and to all of you for making worship and deepening your faith a priority for you and your family. In these remaining days of 2020, we take a look back and a look ahead at the year that was and the year that is to come.
Looking back, we see a world of pain and despair and a struggle in our lives to do what is right, to love God and our neighbor. But we also see the grace of God in our lives and in the world, bringing comfort in the middle of the storms of life, and strength to press on when the going gets rough. We see God at work in our lives and the world to make things look more like they should. Looking back, I see God at work in many of our parishioners who did not hesitate to step forward in a world that is desperate for consolation, healing, forgiveness and peace.
But looking ahead. Looking ahead, what do you see? The book of James is careful to warn us that we should be careful in estimating our ability to predict the future. Truth be told, we do not know what lies ahead for us in 2021, or even with what remains of 2020. But does it matter? If what we believe about God is true, does it matter that the future remains a hazy enigma of possibilities and the fearful unknown? It does not. We know that Jesus will always be with us to provide us for whatever it is that we need. And we know that He has given us the gifts of the Holy Spirit, so that we might walk in faith and light the way for others to come home to the Lord. And so we rejoice for another year of faith and praise God for his promised presence and forgiveness in the year to come!
May this New Year be filled with hope and peace through our effort of strengthening our relationship as sisters and brothers to each other.
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE!