Celebration of On-Going and Newly Created Ministry
And that is what we celebrate today: the variety of the gifts of the Spirit, the different forms of service of the same Lord, the different workings of God in each one of us. Different as we may be from one another, both as individuals and as communities, we in fact form one Body, in Christ.
Our Eucharist, our thanksgiving feast was offered precisely to celebrate that oneness, and that uniqueness.
Today we want to single out for special blessing and thanksgiving Fr. Gene on his 85th birthday and Fr. Ron, as he leaves to take up his Spanish ministry in Metuchen . Fr. Ron follows the directive of the Lord Jesus who appointed disciples to go ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit.
Surely that sums up the Redemptorist vocation which all Redemptorists share, which Fr. Gene has lived for 70 of his 85 years, and which they continue to fulfill daily. We wish you God’s special blessing, and many a year more!
And you, Fr. Ron, who embark on your new work tomorrow with Fr. Jim (James Gilmore), we know that Jesus missions you—and we do too.
The Gospel story I spoke of also speaks to us, your Sisters: “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” We do ask, and will continue to ask that you may always have the helpers you need to do God’s work, to reap that harvest for God.
Another occasion we want to mark is the arrival of the Missionary Sisters of Our Mother of Perpetual Help to form part of the community here at Mount St. Alphonsus. The spread of the Gospel is their work and their joy too. I know the Redemptorists feel very blessed by their presence.
Today being the 25th of the month, in our Alphonsian-Celestian tradition, we gratefully celebrate the mystery of the Incarnation. It is our custom to renew our vows as a community on this day each month, renewing the gift of our lives in gratitude to the God who has given Himself so totally to us. Today we will use a very simple formula for this renewal, hoping that we can say it together thus cementing our relationship with God and our unity with one another in the ongoing work of Redemption.
We also had the great joy to share a festive meal all together. In short, a day of great blessing to us all.