In todays Gospel we find the disciples gathering with Jesus for breakfast. Some call this the Last Breakfast. The disciples have returned back to business as usual following his death and do not recognize Jesus. Peter is the first to recognize Jesus on the shore. Jesus has three questions, “Peter, do you love me?”, which is a match to the three questions of denial in where we hear Peter denies Jesus three times. The various people from this time in history all come to faith in various ways and paths. Jesus’ forgiveness is beyond expectation, I would imagine, for Peter. Peter can help us to be ready for the risen Jesus. Jesus’ incredible love and acceptance calls us to love and service for one another.
As we have been rediscovering in our parishes Pastoral Care, we find many new and renewed people responding to Jesus’ call to love and serve. We are identifying ways in which our parishes can bring our presence to those who are ill, and home bound as well as in care centers and our hospitals. We in essence are bringing their parish to their present homes of care. The blessing of outreach and spiritual prayer support can be of great comfort to both our parishioners and their family. In the next weeks, you will find a brochure available that will identify the many ways we can support our parish family during times of illness and being away from their parish home for care. In the meanwhile, if you have a request for a prayer blanket, visit or to learn more and volunteer, please call the Pastoral Care Phone at 320-251-4831 extension 210. Geralyn or MaryDee will help you with your request.
We also find our love and service to one another visible in our Faith Formation process. With many catechists, volunteers and community meals we gather as parish family to listen to one another and share our lives. Our children in grades 2 and older along with their families, are preparing to celebrate their First Communion this Easter season. This is yet another opportunity for us to grow in our faith and welcome and support our young families. Please congratulate them as they celebrate this Sacrament of Initiation. Our Confirmation youth in grades 9 and 10, continue to balance the study of our faith with service. In our Catholic Schools and our parish programs our youth are learning about our faith and how they too are called to love and serve one another. Our Wednesday evening classes have included outreach projects of food, supplies to those experiencing homelessness, to cards, prayers and the making of prayer blankets.
As in today’s Gospel, we are called like Peter to help ourselves and one another be ready for the Risen Jesus. This Easter Season, I encourage us to all spend some time and seek how we might be called to use the gifts and resources that we have been blessed with to respond to the Risen Jesus in our lives and our communities.