For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
With the recent release of the Star Wars sequel, we are reminded of how much we like stories, especially those that deal with the ancient struggle of good and evil. Look at the popularity of the Harry Potter books and movies along with the Hunger Games. I don’t have much time to read, but I am slowly plodding through the Lord of the Rings cycle by J.R.R. Tolkien. I also read the Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis.
During the holy season of Lent, which began last Wednesday, we read our sacred stories. The life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the motif for the Lent-Easter cycle. The first reading for the Sundays of Lent covers the history of Israel with the primary focus on the Exodus event. During the Lenten season which occurs during the Year of Mercy, we reflect on God’s covenant love which always reaches out to us despite our infidelity and sinfulness. Pope Francis gives us a good description of God’s mercy in his Lenten message. Mercy “expresses God’s way of reaching out to the sinner, offering him a new chance to look at himself, convert and believe.”
The invitation to call on the name of the Lord in faith takes place this week in a special way with our Lenten Mission sponsored by our family of four parishes. It will take place from February 15-17 at Three Holy Women-Holy Rosary Church. The theme is Mercy Calls Your Name with Rich Harter as our guest presenter. Refer to the parish website for more information. Fr. Tim and I take this opportunity to invite you to attend the Mission and bring someone along who perhaps has not been to church in a while. A word of thanks to our parish team for planning the Mission.
Since we do like something tangible to help us in our Lenten journey, please check in the back of church at each site for the Black Book and other Lenten resources. Praying the Stations of the Cross is a wonderful tradition. During the Year of Mercy, you can also visit the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist or make a pilgrimage to other designated sites and enter the Holy Door to learn more about the Jubilee Indulgence. Check the Archdiocesan website at www.archmil.org.
I pray that you have a blessed Lent. See you all at the Mission!
P.S. Happy St. Valentine’s Day!
Fr. Mike Michalski