Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Last Sunday we celebrated the Epiphany, when’s newborn Son was revealed to all the Nations, people of every time and place, as King and Savior. Today, we hear God the Father’s voice revealing Jesus as the Son of God. The Scriptures of the day prepare the whole world for the Lord’s public ministry. This ministry begins with the call to repentance on the part of all humankind. Repentance is the honest and humble recognition of our broken and sinful nature. We cannot save ourselves no matter technologically or politically astute we may think we are. Christ alone is the Savior and Lord, and He has given us every means possible, most especially through the seven sacraments, to attain His mercy and salvation.
Our Lord’s Baptism by John in the Jordan River inaugurates the reconciliation between God and man. Our Lord takes familiar elements and infuses them with supernatural grace. At our Baptism with water and in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, original sin, or actual sin if baptized as an adult, is washed away. We were told “you have become a new creation and have clothed yourself in Christ.” Even if we are not aware of it, we present ourselves before the Lord as a new creation wherein God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit dwells within our souls.
As we contemplate our Lord’s Baptism, it is always important to remember our own. Unworthy though we be, God has come to us and stays with us. When you bless yourself give glory to God that He has claimed you as His son or daughter. He is well-pleased in us. May we never disappoint Him.
This week we begin Ordinary Time marked predominantly by the color green. In less than six weeks, we will begin the Holy season of Lent, on Ash Wednesday, February 17th. A year has passed since we have been under the shadow of the pandemic which sadly has taken lives and dreadfully disrupted lives. Nonetheless, with Christ, we do not despair, rather let us continue to “Walk by Faith” and trust as we long for the Lord and the day we shall be together again.
As we bid “adieu” to the Christmas season, may I once again thank all who made an extra effort to keep and promote the joy of the season. And let us not forget our diligent custodians who kept our walks and lots snow free…..a thousand thanks.