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June 14, 2015

St. John 23rd was having a restless night shortly after being elected pope at the age of 77 on the 28th of October 1958 (He died on the 3rd of June, 1963).  The concerns of the Church and decisions to be made were pressing upon him.  And so he turned restlessly from side to side.  Finally he spoke out his sentiments.  "Listen, Lord, this Church is yours, not mine.  I'm going to sleep."  And, as he said this, he fell quickly asleep.  Later on he was the one who initiated the Second Vatican Council and breathed new life into the modern Church.

We have all met people who were deeply upset because the Church veered too far to the left and then those who were equally disturbed when it went to the right. The Church is ultimately Christ's, as today's liturgy teaches clearly, even though the Church is not the kingdom of God, but the place where the kingdom of God is manifested, and Christ will see it through the storms. 

Throughout history, things were not all encouraging but Christianity has survived.  The Church is stronger than all the people who try to make it or un-make it, because it's in God's hands, and God is at the helm.  Yes, the Church has its share of humanness.  But with all its blemishes, it is still a beacon and a great source of strength.  And how often things turn out better than we thought!  Just when we felt that walls were crashing down around us, the lay people in the Church emerged with vitality and a sense of ownership not previously imagined.  Even while we sleep, God's reign is growing - blade, ear, ripe wheat.  And the birds of the air, the people of all nations, are coming to make nests in its shade.  What is true to the universal Church is also true to the local parish.  Our task is to pray: "Thy kingdom come," and to live as an outstanding member of that kingdom.

A Big Thank You to parents and catechists who have sown the seeds of God’s love in the lives of our children who have received First Communion and Confirmation. All these people are trying to make the Kingdom of God present in his Church.  The mustard seed has the inner power to grow itself, but it also needs the water and the care of someone.  The kingdom of God has the inner power to grow without our notice, but it also needs our care, our prayer, and our little sacrifices.   Are you ready to give God a hand?  Do your best and God will do the rest, because after all the Church is the Church of God.