News & Events
Back The Fifth Sunday of Easter
Thursday, May 16, 2019
From the Desk of Fr. Ron…….
The new normal for us in society is to develop our skills in “Active Shooter” situations. Even here at Nativity of Mary School inservice programs for our faculty and staff have included “Active Shooter” training; evaluating our facilities as well as our staff methodology, should we encounter such a tragedy. The mantra is becoming known to us all: “Run, Hide, Fight.” In the most recent school shooting at the STEM School in suburban Denver, Kendrick Castillo, an eighteen year old, soon to be graduate, lunged at one of the shooters taking fatal gunfire and giving others precious moments that they needed to take cover. In some editoral comments people have questioned if we should be glamorizing such events by calling such sacrificing youth “heros.” In a story about this particular event John Castillo, Kendrick’s faither, had been quoted as saying to his son, “You don’t have to be the hero.” I’m sure every parent would concur with that thought concerning their own child. In this weekend’s Biblical lesson in the Gospel of John, it takes us to the “last supper” event. Jesus just confronts Judas who leaves to begin the betrayal. Jesus responds by saying: "Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him,” (John 13:31). The evangelist is not speaking about the Resurrection or Ascension here, but of the brutality of the cross. “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,” (John 3:14). “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men to Myself,” (John 12:32). This self-sacrifice will usher in abundant blessings. “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends,” (John 15:13). It is at this moment that Jesus gives His disciples a new commandment. When we hear His words we think, “that is not new; haven’t we heard this before?” When asked about the greatest commandment of the law, we recall that Jesus answers by quoting Deuteronomy 6:4, “Hear Oh Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone!....etc. We’re aware that Jesus then adds a line from Leviticus 20:18, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Jesus goes further to redefine “neighbor” not only as one’s fellow countryman or Jew, but all people including Samaritans. But, in this “last supper” context, the new commandment is, “As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.” (John 13:34). In this new command, the disciples are urged not only to treat each other as they wish themselves to be treated, but to love each other as Jesus loves them. Can they love each other in the same intense way that Jesus loves them? Can they lay down their lives for each other as Jesus will do for them? “This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35). The first two statements of active shooter training everyone finds acceptable: “Run, Hide.” It’s the third one that gives us the most trouble: “Fight!” Many of us thought that the age of martyrdom was long past. Blessed are we if this teaching of Jesus can be so part of us that we too can “lay down our life” for the safety of another. We call that self-sacrifice. “This is how all will know that you are my disciples.”
FEEDBACK BOOTH Every so often we receive a few notes. Here are two: “I am a long-standing parishioner (56 years). I would like to comment on the very progressive works that are done on the parish level. Young families are responding well.” “We want you to know we are so happy and satisfied that we found our “forever” church. A good place, special priests & staff and many other people involved with Nativity. Thanks.”
A NEW PROCESSIONAL CROSS began to be used last Sunday here at Nativity. Our former crucifix had been damaged and minor repairs would never hold. The processional cross matches all the other Liturgical appointments within our sanctuary though it is a bit heavier than the former one. Last Sunday we also instituted a few changes in our Altar Server and Eucharistic Ministry procedures. We hope these changes will assist us as we continue to worship together as one family of faith here at Nativity. Many thanks to our Altar Servers and Eucharistic Ministers who are dealing well with the minor changes.