Charles Dickens famously began A Tale of Two Cities with the words “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” That opening line came back to me as I was reflecting on our more than two years of “life with Covid.”
My observation is that this pandemic has brought out the best and the worst in people. I think about all the heroes that have stepped forward and shown an amazing level of self-sacrifice. We all know how first responders, doctors, nurses and various medical staffers have given (and continue to give) so much of themselves, working long hours in overcrowded hospitals. I think of researchers and scientists who worked diligently to produce vaccines for prevention and medications for treatment. I think of school teachers and aids (our own school included) who were willing to make extraordinary adaptations to keep our children learning. I think of parents who also sacrificed and juggled schedules to ensure that their children continued to learn. There are many more examples that I could cite that illustrate the good will and sacrifices that people have been willing to make for the common good.
Sadly, the pandemic and the various responses to it have also brought out the worst in some people. While we might disagree about strategies, policies and protocols, we cannot let our disagreements degenerate into name calling and condemnation. (It happens on both sides.) When public meetings and social media become occasions for judging the motivations of others or personal attacks, we have crossed the line of Christian charity. What makes me really sad is the divisions that have been created within families, parishes, schools, cities and nearly every group in our society. People on opposite sides of various issues have given up trying to dialogue. No one is listening to the other. There is no search for common ground. Respectful disagreement has disappeared. People have become entrenched in their positions to such an extent that they have prejudged their brothers and sisters in Christ.
My simple request is this: let’s try listening to one another. Can we enter into a dialogue that seeks to heal divisions? Can we turn down the volume? I believe it starts by looking for the good in one another. I just read these words of St. Paul once again and I think his advice applies to our situation today:
Never let evil talk pass your lips; say only the good things people need to hear, things that will really help them. Do nothing that will sadden the Holy Spirit with whom you were sealed against the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, all passion and anger, harsh words, slander, and malice of every kind. In place of these, be kind to one another, compassionate, and mutually forgiving, just as God has forgiven you in Christ. (Ephesians 4:29-32)
Pope Francis has given the next Synod of Bishops an interesting and exciting twist. Instead of just bringing the Bishops of the world together to talk, he has proposed “a bottom up” approach. He has asked every parish in the world to hold listening sessions about the present and future of the Church. The reports from each parish will be collated at the diocesan level. Then our Diocese will send a report to the Vatican in which the input from the parishioners is summarized. The reports from the various dioceses become the basis for the discussion by the Synod of Bishops in 2023.
Our parish will hold 8 listening sessions in March. They are scheduled at various times to enable as many people as possible to participate.
In order to make adequate preparations, we request that you sign up in advance.
Not only will the input from those sessions be submitted to the Diocese, which in turn submits it to the Vatican. Our parish will use what we have learned from listening to plan and organize our life as a parish. Likewise, the Diocese of San Diego will take the input from its parishes and discern how to move forward in becoming a Church which listens and responds.
Watch this message from Bishop Robert McElroy in which he invites us to participate.
Divorced, widowed, and separated persons can register now for a healing Beginning Experience Weekend retreat April 29 to May 1, 2022. The weekend focuses on healing and moving beyond grief in a supportive and caring environment with others that are going through and have gone through the same experiences. The retreat will be held at the beautiful and serene Prince of Peace Abbey, in Oceanside, CA. If you know someone experiencing the pain of loss, Beginning Experience can help. For further information email:
Or call Vicki Fach (858) 748-2273, or Nish Carmedy (330) 607-8774 SPANISH
Mask Mandate Lifted
As you know, the state and county have chosen not to renew the mask mandate for those who are vaccinated. Persons who are not vaccinated are still required to wear masks indoors. Even those who are vaccinated may choose to wear a mask for their own safety as well as that of others.
For St. Patrick Parish, this means that while you are encouraged to wear masks for Mass in the church and other indoor activities, it is not required. Because religious education classes are considered “school,” our religious education students will continue to wear masks indoors.
Just a reminder: until further notice, our Sunday Mass at 11:00 am will be celebrated outdoors on the covered court of the school.
Listen to Lang Lang play Bach's joyous Goldberg Variations. Watch how effortlessly his hands roam around the keyboard. The superstar pianist plays variations 26 and 30 from Johann Sebastian Bach's keyboard masterpiece, in this exclusive session at London's Steinway Hall.
Did you know there is a Men's Bible Study that meets here at St. Patrick for one hour on Wednesday nights starting at 6:30pm? For more information contact: Joe Jean at (714)488-8684 or email: email@example.com
Consider going deeper this Lent. Author Cyndi Peterson will lead us in a reflection on Redemptive Suffering. Our event takes place on March 9th at 6:30pm (Social)/7-8pm (Program) at the St. Francis Chapel/Mission San Diego de Acala. Contact Judy Lemm at Judylemm@cox.netwith any questions. All are welcome to this free event.
I’m Gonna Sing Till the Spirit
"I'm Gonna Sing Till the Spirit" was written by Moses Hogan. Here it is sung by Oasis Chorale at Cornerstone Mennonite Fellowship in Ephrata, Pennsylvania on July 11, 2021.
Please remember to log in to your Online Giving account to make sure your payment method is up to date and your gifts are being processed.
For help with forgotten passwords, please contact Online Giving technical support at 800.348.2886, ext. 2.
Click on the Online Giving icon below to create or access your account.
We appreciate your support!
"Catholic Trivia”... not because they are trivial but because these might be things that not everyone knows. Test your knowledge by reading the five questions, remember your answers (or jot them down), then click the link below to find the answers.
What is the name of the prayer we say when we go to confession, express our sorrow for sinning and ask for God’s forgiveness?
According to the Book of Exodus, where did Moses receive the Ten Commandments?
Which pope gave St. Francis of Assisi the title of patron saint of ecology?
If you have other members of your family or your friends who would like to be on our email list, just let me know or write to Mary McLain at firstname.lastname@example.org We will be pleased to add them.
As we bear the image of Adam, so we will bear the image of the one from heaven.
Jesus teaches his disciples to be merciful as God is merciful.
Background on the Gospel Reading
Today's gospel reading is a continuation of the teaching that began in last Sunday's gospel. We continue to hear Jesus' Sermon on the Plain. Recall that in Luke's Gospel, this teaching is addressed to Jesus' disciples. This is in contrast to the parallel found in Matthew's Gospel, the Sermon on the Mount, in which Jesus' words are addressed to both the disciples and to the crowds.
These words from Jesus' teaching are familiar to us. They constitute the crux and the challenge of what it means to be a disciple: Love your enemies, turn the other cheek, give to those who ask, do unto others, lend without expecting repayment, judge not lest you be judged.
There are several similarities between Luke's and Matthew's report of Jesus' great teaching. Both begin with the Beatitudes. Matthew includes nearly all the content that Luke does; the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew's Gospel is longer than Luke's Sermon on the Plain. There are, however, differences in language and nuance. For example, Matthew presents this portion of the teaching as a contrast between Jesus' teaching and the teachings of the law and the prophets. This is in keeping with Matthew's concern to address his predominantly Jewish audience. It is likely that Luke omits this contrast because it was unnecessary for the Gentile believers for whom Luke is writing.
Another point of contrast between Matthew and Luke's presentation is the terminology. In Luke, Jesus contrasts the behavior of his followers with the behavior of “sinners.” In Matthew, Jesus contrasts the behavior desired with the behavior of tax collectors and Gentiles. Matthew concludes the teaching about love of enemies with the admonition to be perfect as God is perfect; Luke concludes by emphasizing God's mercy.
In both Gospels, Jesus' words challenge those who would follow him to be more like God. God loves us beyond our expectations, beyond anything we can possibly imagine. In response to God's love, we are to love as God loves, beyond expectations and with a depth beyond imagining.
Our responsorial psalm today is based on Psalm 103. It praises the wondrous mercy of our God. This setting is by the great late 20th century – early 21st century composer Marty Haugen.
Learning about the Priesthood
On Saturday, March 19, 2022, the Diocese of San Diego is hosting an Explorer Day for those men who are interested in exploring a possible vocation to the priesthood. The event will be held at St. Francis Center on the campus of the University of San Diego from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. If living a life of service for Christ and the people of God is attractive to you, take advantage of the opportunity to attend this upcoming Explorer Day. Pick up a registration form at our parish office.
The Good News of God’s Mercy –
Lenten Bible Study with the Gospel of Luke
Salvation came through Jesus’ birth, life, death, and resurrection. However, what Jesus brought went far beyond what the Jewish people of the time were expecting. The reactions to Jesus were numerous as people came to know the demands of his mission.
In our Lenten study with Luke’s gospel, we will meet people who quickly follow Jesus. Others we see struggle to understand what Jesus is offering them. Some accept, others doubt, others begin to surrender.
Our study promises surprising encounters and challenging messages.
Join us on six Thursday evenings, March 3 – April 7 from 6:45pm – 8:30pm.
We will offer groups in the parish center as well as a zoom option.
Register after mass this weekend; booklets $15.- (cash or checks please).
Or register with Carole King email@example.com 760-434-5688 and get yourbooklet at the parish office; hours during the week are 8:30am – 12:30pm; 1:30 – 4:30pm.
Join us and bring a friend. No bible study experience needed!
Religious Education Congress
The Los Angeles Religious Education Congress always has many presentations on a wide variety of topics. This year’s event will take place on March 17-20. Participants can gather at the Anaheim Convention Center in person or they can participate virtually.
Jesús dijo, “Traten a los demás como quieran que los traten a ustedes.” Estas palabras que escuchamos en el Evangelio de esta semana son palabras que cargamos en nuestro corazón. ¿Es fácil vivirlas? Es triste contestar que no son. Todos queremos que se nos respete, que seamos escuchados o perdonados. No queremos que nadie nos juzgue o que hablen mal de nosotros. Creo que vivir con este plan es correcto. Hay un dicho que dice, “Hagan lo que les digo y no lo que hago”. Porque, si realmente queremos sentir que somos tratados con dignidad, tenemos que vivir mirando la dignidad en otros. ¿Qué significa la dignidad? Para la Iglesia, la dignidad viene de que todo ser humano fue creado a la imagen de Dios, y que nadie no lo puede quitar. ¡Tu hermana y hermano tienes dignidad! Por eso Jesús nos habla de la necesidad de amar y perdonar, y de no guardar rencor a nadie, y así podremos vivir libres. Esta semana, los reto a que estemos consientes de la dignidad que existe en cada ser humano. Que antes de juzgar, criticar y/o condenar a otros, que miremos la imagen de Dios en esos hermanos. Incluyendo a esos hermanos/as que ni se dan cuenta de que pertenecen a Dios, algún día lo sabrán, quizás tú mismo serás el instrumento que usará Dios para enseñarle. Que estemos consientes que Dios esta en mí, que Dios me ha perdonado y no me guarda rencor, sólo me ama. Ese amor que Dios me lo ha dado, también yo sea el amor a otros.
Por favor escuchen a los enlaces proveídos, espero que les ayude en su meditación.