Dear brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus,
Like every week, I am happy to greet you and continue encouraging you to continue building the kingdom of God together, living with joy and holiness the challenges of each day, always keeping in mind that each challenge is an opportunity to get closer to heaven, which is the goal of every Christian.
We are already in the month of February, and we are only a few days away from starting Lent, a liturgical time that invites us to conversion and sacrifice; like every year, one of the sacrifices we make as a parish is to participate in the Bishop’s Lenten Appeal Campaign (BLA). This year, the campaign is focused on the third and final year of preparation to celebrate the 50 years of foundation; the theme of this year is: “Behold, I make all things new. The period of preparation for the momentous occasion of our 50-year Golden Anniversary has been a special time for our diocesan family as we remember the past with gratitude, rejoice in God’s many blessings, and renew our faith and trust in the Lord our God. The celebration of the 50th anniversary of our diocese moves us to a profound sense of thanksgiving for the gifts that God has provided, especially his grace and mercy. We are inspired with the desire to share what we have received from our Lord, especially by carrying out corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Your participation in the BLA is a way of both offering thanks to God and sharing the Good News of his Gospel. I ask you to consider prayerfully a sacrificial pledge to this year’s BLA and help support the 40+ programs and ministries that serve countless people in our parishes and throughout the diocese. Your gift will be used to enrich and improve the lives of others and reveal to them the compassion of Christ” (Bishop Burbidge).
Next weekend (February 10 and 11) is the commitment weekend for this Lenten campaign. I invite you to make this commitment with faith, prayer, and generosity. The diocese has probably already sent the commitment envelopes to most of you, so I encourage you to respond promptly. I humbly ask you to collaborate in this year’s campaign. On behalf of our Bishop, I thank you for your sacrifice and collaboration.
Finally, I want to congratulate the children of our religious education program and our school because, on February 10, they will make their first confession. It is a special occasion for them; they will encounter the grace of God for the first time. I invite you to pray with me for all these boys and girls who will access this beautiful sacrament for the first time. In advance, I congratulate and thank the catechists who I know have made an effort to train them very well so that they can make and enjoy this day.
I hope you have a blessed week and have you in my prayers.