Dear parishioners and friends:

This Sunday is Laetare Sunday, a milestone in the Lenten observance to focus on the joy that should be marking our spiritual journey up to Jerusalem.  Holy Week 2020 is drawing closer!  The Church’s Propers for this Sunday speak of the radiance of faith, God enlightening everyone who comes into this world and our devotion as move toward the solemnities to come.  Of course, the Fourth Sunday of Lent is the time for the second scrutiny as our catechumens are prayed for in preparation for newness of life and light by virtue of Holy Baptism.

Our Old Testament reading draws attention to God choosing David.  He continues to choose us as His own by virtue of Baptism.  Again, these sentiments are important for all of us in not only recalling our own baptismal dignity but in praying fervently for those among us who are to be enlightened with faith as they are baptized.

Our second reading highlights that all of us are called out of darkness!  What a timely message for us to consider being children of light in the gloom of the current pandemic sweeping our globe.  The community of the baptized is not only called to live in the light of Christ but to share it with all that we meet.  These days of containment are ripe with opportunities to shine the light of Christ for those around us.

Finally, the Gospel narrative dramatically points to Christ as the Light of Truth.  All of us are in need of having our eyes opened by the Lord!  We sometimes see only what we want to see and find it challenging to register the bright light of faith in the midst of the darkness around us.  Jesus is the Light of the World and we are all partners in shining that light for others to see.

May the hallmark of joy, so much a part of the Church’s Liturgy today, dwell in our hearts in this period of great unknowing!  May the current crisis end quickly and restore a sense of joy in us, our families, our nation, and our globe!  Amen.