Dear HT Parishioners,
God is good, all the time.
When I was assigned at a previous parish, I lived with an African priest from Uganda who used to say the above phrase a good amount. It is true!
Our Lord is the all merciful, all loving God. The Father Who loves each of us as a son or daughter. The Son Who Died on a Cross for each of us, such is our great dignity. The Holy Spirit Who continually grants us His grace and strength in good times and in bad. This is our God.
Yet, He does allow suffering to occur – so as to bring good out of it. Our prayers go to all who are suffering – physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually – during the coronavirus ordeal. The crazed response by a good number of people is not His desire. He desires us to turn to Him with trust and hope, rather than sadness and despair.
When the temporal world seems to fall apart, it is good to remember that our peace, our joy, our dignity come, not from that which passes away, but from our all merciful, all loving Father Who loves me infinitely. I am a child of God, is what I heard Monsignor Scannell say.
Yes, Bishop Burbidge has stopped all public Masses in our diocese. That said, we can still visit Jesus in the Holy Eucharist as our churches can remain open. Our Adoration continues in the main church. The only caveat is that we are bound by the ten (10) person rule. So as not to cause frustration, we have set up a SignUpGenius for those who plan to visit Our Lord. We have regular adorers for each hour throughout the day and night. If you would like to come to a particular hour, can you just put your name down for that hour?
We will also have confessions at the regularly scheduled times. Again, to abide by the 3-6 foot rule from the CDC and the 10 person rule, we will have confessions either outside in the parking lots and/or classrooms. I, actually, may be in my car parked in the back parking lot with cones marking off spaces. Ever heard of drive thru confessions?! I got the idea from a priest online. I can even put up some screen or something in my window for anonymity!!
Further details from Bishop Burbidge can be found at the diocesan website: arlingtondiocese.org.
Know that we priests will offer our private Masses each day for the designated intentions and for all of you.
We should recall the words of Fr. Jacques Philippe: The experience of the Church and the saints demonstrates a general law: what comes from the Spirit of God brings with it joy, peace, tranquility of spirit, gentleness, simplicity and light. On the other hand, what comes from the spirit of evil brings with it sadness, trouble, agitation, worry, confusion and darkness. These marks of the good and the evil spirit are unmistakable signs in themselves.