Our “Prayer Marathon” is now over. We celebrated 15 days of offering the parish opportunities to stand in the grace of God in prayer and fellowship: to allow God to “Heap Coals of Blessings on our Heads”. It was the most satisfying and invigorating experience I’ve personally had since coming to Our Lady of Angels. I know that those who came will continue to experience the “salvation” our God promises us in this life. My thanks to all those who worked so diligently and lovingly to make this happen.
What did we learn? To enjoy the blessings we’ve never thought we could have!! A Story: Weeks before the Freshman final exam the Professor told the students they could bring with them just one sheet of paper, but on the paper they could put as much information as they could. You can imagine how small and creative the information was on those papers. On the day of the exam one student brought in a blank piece of paper and laid it next to his desk. Next he waved his hand and signaled for someone to come in. An older graduate student walked confidently into the exam room and placed his two feet on the blank piece of paper. The student had all the help he needed for the exam!
Life has its share of ups and downs; and at times, it can be easy to let challenging circumstances keep you hindered and discouraged. Maybe you’ve faced some unfortunate, unfair or hurtful situations in your past. You could have disappointments or setbacks. And perhaps, the clock is ticking on your dream. But, as the graduate student was next to his friend helping him, Our Blessed Lady is right there next to you, reminding you that God is on your side, and nothing is beyond His ability to intervene. So regardless of where you are now, do not fear or falter like St. Peter did last week. Now is not the time for “COLD FEET” but it is the time for living the “Gift of Stewardship”.
My challenge last week was directly from the “Professor” himself, Our Lord God Yahweh. It was a demand and an invitation to trust, to pray, to recognize the blessing of our talents and to share all that we have and are. Giving back to God is the greatest way we thank God. It is the way we re-center ourselves and discover the awesome power of disciplining ourselves to God’s will.
You may say: I can’t do it. God answers: You can do all things. (Phil 4:13)
You may say: I’m afraid. God answers: I have not given you a spirit of fear. (2 Tim 1:7)
You may say: I’m not smart enough. God answers: I give you wisdom. ( I Cor 1:30)
For every excuse God has an answer and a blessing. You will run out of excuses long before God runs out of answers, love and challenges for you. Summer is quickly coming to a close: Enjoy it – Read the Good Book!!
S O S One of our ongoing Novena petitions is the ability to recognize and respond to those in need. The past week, one of our families, the Westfield’s had a major catastrophe, their house burned to the ground. They were away at the time but they lost everything except the clothes on their back. They need our help to get back on their feet. First of all they need a place to stay. If someone has a place to rent that will take a five member family with a dog, please contact the parish center. Secondly, they need clothes. The best thing seems to be gift certificates. You can bring them to the parish center or put them into the collection basket. Thirdly they need some monetary assistance to re-supply Joe’s business and buy necessary things for the house. You can make a check or money order out to Hope and Health Outreach labeled Westfield Family under memo and they will get the funds to them. Also you can visit our web site. Click on the donate button and make a donation. On behalf of the Westfield’s I thank God for your generosity and love. Tuesday is the last day of our Novena. It has been a marvelous time of prayer and fellowship and I praise God for all who have been able to attend. Tuesday will be a time to remember! As always the day after the Novena, the 10th Day, is the Day of Blessing. Mark Forrester will be here to lead us in an evening of reflection, prayer, witness and healing. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by!!! Today (Sunday) is the last day of the Peach Festival. There are still many peach delicacies and gifts waiting for your inspection and purchase. Don’t take a chance, make an investment in our parish. FYI: Tomorrow the Parkway Authority is closing our exit on Mechanic St. From now on if you want to get to the Church from the Parkway you must exit at Stone Harbor Blvd and take the access road to the Church. You will also be able to go north on the access road and go up to Stone Harbor Blvd or south back onto the Parkway from Mechanic St. This will take some getting used to, so please be patient. Fr. Cosme will be returning this week, please pray for his safe journey home. As always pray for peace! Friday is the Feast of the Assumption. Masses will be celebrated on Thursday at 5PM and on Friday at 8AM and Noon. No evening Mass on Friday.