My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, As we have begun the season of Lent several weeks ago, I cannot help but comment on what Lent can mean for us. The word Lent comes from an old English word that means spring; therefore, it is not unreasonable to describe Lent as the springtime of the soul.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, This week, we celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation. It is both a Marian Feast and a Feast of Jesus Christ because it is on this day that Mary virginally conceived the Lord Jesus. This feast has always been celebrated as a feast of both Christ and Mary. In fact, in the past it carried the name of the Annunciation of Christ or the Conception of Christ.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, As you know, March 19 is the day we normally celebrate the Feast of St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church. This year, because it falls on a Sunday in Lent, the feast day has been moved to the 20th of March.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, On behalf of the people who are served throughout our Diocese in Brooklyn and Queens, we begin the 2017 Annual Catholic Appeal, “Live in Faith – Give in Love,” by thanking those who generously responded to the 2016 Annual Catholic Appeal and the Generations of Faith capital campaign.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, since Lent has now begun, I call attention to the Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for Lent 2017 entitled “The Word is a gift. Other persons are a gift.”
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, Since the Fourth Century, the Church has celebrated the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter. This celebration gives the Church an opportunity from this most ancient time to recognize the place of the papacy in our Catholic faith.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, The immigration history of America has not been one of our stellar achievements. Unfortunately, nativism, racism, xenophobia and every other type of negative public reaction have played a part in the development of our immigration laws and practices.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, This week will begin the observance of National Marriage Week (Feb. 7 – 14) and World Marriage Day (Sunday, Feb. 12). This time presents an occasion when the Church can celebrate and reflect on the dignity of the institution of marriage.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, With tremendous joy, it is my pleasure to share with you exciting news from our Generations of Faith campaign. Nearly two and a half years ago, after an extensive planning study across our Diocese in Brooklyn and Queens and significant consultation with our pastors, lay leaders and parishioners, Generations of Faith was launched.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, Catholic Schools Week is a time for everyone to celebrate the great success stories of Catholic education within the Diocese of Brooklyn. During this special week, we celebrate the great accomplishments of the students entrusted to us, and we recognize the commitments made by our parents, the dedication of our teachers and staff, the leadership of our principals, the work of the board of directors and the spiritual leadership of our pastors and parish priests.