St. Stephen Cathedral Mass
Blessed Sacrament Chapel Mass
Published on August 29th, 2014
I. Labor Day: Work of Human Hands! “All work has a threefold moral significance: 1). It is a principal way that people exercise the distinctive human capacity for self-expression and self-realization. 2). It is the ordinary way for human beings to fulfill their material needs. 3). Finally, work enables people to contribute to the well-being of the larger community. Work is not only for oneself. It is for one’s family, for the nation, and indeed for the benefit of the entire human family.” (National conference of Catholic Bishops, “Economic Justice for All,” 1986). You are invited to celebrate Mass on Labor Day, to pray for the unemployed and under employed, and to thank God for your work. What we do and how we do it, builds the kingdom. Do I see work as a gift from God?
II. It’s Time to Celebrate! After my mother’s stroke on August 19, seeing her struggle, watching her die, celebrating her life, trying desperately to give her back to God…gratefully, I’m ready for a celebration! I invite every member of St. Stephen Cathedral Parish to celebrate Dedication Day with your Parish Pastoral Council, Pastoral Staff, Fr. Suneesh, Bishop Medley and me on Thursday, September 4. Mass will begin at 6:00pm, followed by a wonderful meal.
III. No Wonder Peter rebukes Jesus! Jesus ” began to show his disciples” what faithful discipleship demands: denying self, losing self, letting self die. Who wants to do that! Jesus teaches his disciples to “let go” of self so that a NEW self can be given. What we relinquish is ourselves as we are now; what we are given is a new self born from identifying completely with Jesus’ death and resurrection. It takes a lifetime of discipleship to turn from wanting to rebuke Jesus’ way of living through the cross to embracing it. It takes a lifetime of discipleship to let Jesus transform our life into His life.
IV. Love is Timeless! My mother’s love is a gift that lasts beyond a lifetime. Her last words, “love you,” were to my dad; they would have celebrated their 70th anniversary of marriage on September 27. The two things that strike me about mom is her LOVE, which was sacrificial and unconditional, and her FAITH, which was constant, integrated and the lens through which she experienced life.
I am forever grateful for your many signs and expressions of condolences during this difficult time. Your cards, phone calls, and kind words, as well as the visits to the funeral home or the celebration of the Mass of Christian Burial at Immaculate Church last Wednesday, which so many of you who made time for, mean more than I can express. Though my mother is better off and lived for eternal life, it’s tough to “let go” of those you love. Your support means so much, and I appreciate deeply your many expressions of sympathy. Thank you!
Joy and Hope,