Mass and Confession Schedule
7:30am⎪9am (ASL Interpreted)⎪10:30am⎪ 10:30am gym⎪12:30pm⎪5:30pm Filipino Mass every 4th Sunday 4pm
6:30am(Except Federal Holidays) ⎪8am⎪11am⎪5:30pm
8am⎪11am⎪5:30pm (Fullfills Sunday Obligation)
Holy Days of Obligation
Eve Before the Feast - 5:30pm
Feast Day - 6:30am⎪8am⎪11am⎪5:30pm
Sacrament Of Reconciliation (Confession)
Friday and Saturday after 11am Mass (if no funeral)
Saturday: 4- 5pm & after 5:30pm Mass
OR anytime by appointment
March 9, 2014
On this First Sunday of Lent, we find the source of sin and death in our passage from Genesis. Life is a fragile gift given by God to our first parents, Adam and Eve, who He placed in the Garden of Eden. They are not the owners of the garden and they are not destined for death, but they can die if they disobey the command they have received. How is it that death, from being only a threat, has become the unavoidable fate of humankind? Sin is disobedience rooted in the human heart. The tempter, the cunning serpent, leads Adam and Eve to doubt God, to see Him as a jealous rival whose law prevents them from living a full life. Sin is not born of the attraction of the forbidden fruit, but of a perversion within oneself of God’s image, of the nature and intent of the divine law. In this way, the forbidden fruit appears “good for food, pleasing to the eyes, and desirable” since it allows us to seize something that a God who is a tyrant would keep out of our reach. Does God love us and give us what we need or does He jealously keep things for Himself? Here is where sin and death enter our world through pride: rather than listening to God and trusting Him, Adam and Eve disobey Him.
In our reading from St. Paul’s letter to the Romans, he reminds us that death has entered through Adam but Jesus Christ brings salvation marked by the forgiveness of sins and life everlasting. Paul contrasts the situation for us: a world of darkness and death, a universe of light and life; the unity of humanity destroyed in Adam, renewed in Jesus Christ. In a word, on one side sin and death dominate; on the other, life and grace reign.
In Matthew’s gospel, Jesus goes to the desert after His baptism, “to be tempted by the devil.” The desert is the place of trials as well as of revelations. Matthew emphasizes the first aspect, without forgetting that a stay in solitude can be peaceful: angels are near Jesus and serve Him. There is no contradiction here. Solitude places us humans in the presence of God and ourselves without any possible escape; it forces us to make radical choices. We must decide to answer “yes” or “no” to God; the “yes, but,” used routinely in our ordinary lives, proves impossible. The choices cannot be made without a violent struggle against the self and against the enticing solicitations of the devil. But when we succeed in answering “yes” to God’s call, the devil departs and peace takes possession of our whole being. Because Jesus was truly human, Jesus could not bypass the test of the desert and of temptation; temptation was more violent as His mission was loftier and more exacting than that of any other person. Before undertaking His ministry of teaching and revelation in words and actions, Jesus confronted Satan in a decisive single combat. Jesus defeated him by foiling him with his trickery through His unshakable attachment to God’s word. In Jesus and through Him, the whole of humankind was again and definitively turned toward its creator. We no longer fight against the evil one in an unequal combat. We enter the fight with the solid support of Jesus and the weapons of our faith: the Scriptures, the Sacraments, and our prayer lives.
May God bless all of you,