Easter Sunday Message

Easter Sunday – April 12, 2020

A Message from the Pastor

The Lord is Risen! Alleluia! Alleluia!

He is Risen Indeed! Alleluia! Alleluia!

We celebrate the Resurrection of the Lord! Problem is: most of us feel like we are still in the tomb, and will be throughout the Easter season, until this pandemic subsides and we are able to resume our normal activities, including attending Mass each Sunday. While we may be feeling sorrow and distress for the struggles we are all going through, we can have a sense of joy and hope, knowing that the grace and power of the Resurrection is available to us who have faith.

In the Gospel of Matthew, “the guards were shaken with fear of him (the angel) and became like dead men”, whereas the two Marys “went away quickly from the tomb, fearful, yet overjoyed, and ran to announce this (that Jesus has been raised from the dead) to his disciples” (Matthew 28). The same event led to two different conclusions, depending on whether or not the persons involved had faith in Jesus: either they became like dead men, or they went fearful yet joyful to tell others.

The same dynamic is at work today: we can become like dead men in fear of what is happening in the world with the Pandemic; or we can believe in the Risen Christ, and seek him and encounter him in the Scriptures, in prayer, and in our livestreamed Masses. We can still be a little fearful, but also filled with faith, with awe, and with hope, and go and offer a message of hope to others.

If you are like dead men, for lack of faith or having given up on your faith, we invite you, when the crisis subsides, to renew the practice of our Catholic Faith by coming to mass each weekend; if you have no faith, or are not Catholic, we invite you to join us in the RCIA process to learn about our faith and prepare to receive the Sacraments of Initiation. Learn how to have hope, faith, and even joy in the midst or confusion and loss.

In another Gospel account we see that the Risen Lord appeared to the disciples, who had self-contained themselves into the upper room out of fear of being arrested by the authorities and killed for their faith in Jesus (John 20:19). Then Jesus came through the locked doors and said, Peace be with you.” He gave them the gift of the Holy Spirit. Today, throughout the world, many are on self-lock-down or quarantine, not allowed to move about as they normally would, out of obedience to authorities and out of fear of getting or spreading the Coronavirus that has infected and killed so many worldwide. The Risen Lord can give us peace and hope, knowing that we are under His Spiritual protection and grace in this time of lock-down.

The early Church faced persecution, imprisonment and death for their faith in the Risen Christ (as recounted in the Acts of the Apostles). But they still maintained hope and joy because they believed in a power greater than this world; they had a hope of eternal life; and they had experienced in the crucified and Risen Lord a love that goes beyond crucifixion and death! Through the action of the Holy Spirit, they experienced in their community the presence of the Risen Christ, guiding them, inspiring them with hope in God, and renewing their communities with love for each other.

May our faith in the Risen Christ give us this hope, joy, and a greater love and care for one another! “Peace be with you.”

Fr. Brian Hayes, Pastor

Sunday Mass will be live-streamed from St. Catherine Labouré at 9:30 AM in English and 1:00 PM in Spanish on Easter Sunday and each Sunday until the Pandemic subsides.

You can join us on YouTube or Facebook Live.

· For YouTube, here is the link: https://bit.ly/39ppdvi. If you click on the button that says “subscribe” you will get notices when our page goes live.

· For Facebook LIVE, https://www.facebook.com/saintcatherinelaboure/. Please be sure to click “like” on the page.

Seek (Search) and you will find! (Matthew 6)

Although you may not be able to receive Holy Communion at this time, you can remain in “Spiritual Communion” – by your act of the will desiring to be in communion, and by distaining all sin or anything that keeps you from God and one another. We look forward to the day when we will celebrate the Eucharist together again with great joy!

We will also have the Rosary livestreamed from Facebook.live Tuesday at 7:00 PM (and Monday at 7:00 Pm in Spanish).

Bishop McElroy has dispensed the faithful from the obligation to attend Mass for the coming weeks (until further notice). While no public Masses are being held in these days, I will be saying Mass each day for all of you and our whole world. Between myself and Fr. Benjamin, we will be fulfilling the scheduled Mass Intentions as well. (There are still some openings available, please contact the office to schedule a Mass Intention.)

For Confessions, Bishop McElroy, quoting Pope Francis, says that for now it is sufficient to be sorry for your sins, make an Act of Contrition, and be ready to Confess sacramentally when the Crisis subsides. If someone really needs the Sacramental Absolution, I will be available for Confessions on Saturday at 4:00 PM, in the main church, or by appointment.

Don’t forget your financial donation to support the parish, as our expenses continue. Consider an online donation at our website: donate. Enter the amount you want to donate.) You can also mail in your donation; orput it inthe office mail slot. Thank-you to those who are already doing this.

See News Postings on the website for ongoing periodic updates.

Livestreamed Masses:

· As noted above, will be livestreaming Sunday Mass at 9:30 AM and 1:00 PM (Spanish)

· The Diocese of San Diego will be streaming Sunday and Daily Mass celebrated in our Pastoral Center Chapel. These can be accessed at www.sdcatholic.org.

For now, we remain united in faith, hope, and love – from a distance!

Fr. Brian Hayes, Pastor

St. Catherine Labouré Catholic Church

San Diego Ca 92111