A Sunday Like No Other!

As the first anniversary of my consecration and installation as your bishop has now come and gone, my heart is filled with gratitude to the faithful of our diocese for their warm welcome and kindness the past 12 months. I truly feel at home here, thanks to the goodness of so many, beginning with the College of Bishops who chose to listen to the working of the Holy Spirit, despite my all-to-human protests! Thinking back to this time last year, I remember how gracious Bishop Cass was as I prepared to begin my episcopal ministry here. His kindness and graciousness have continued throughout the year. And, now, I am grateful to continue my work with Bishop Gregory; we are, as they say, ‘thick as thieves’!

I am deeply grateful to the priests, deacons, and religious of our diocese who are my wonderful coworkers in pastoral ministry. I have enjoyed every presbyteral gathering and also my frequent encounters with our clergy in our parish and in parishes throughout the diocese. These hardworking and faithful servants of the Lord have been a great support. I am very grateful to our ordained ministers for their commitment to Christ and His Church. I also thank our seminarians and Secular Franciscans who are also an inspiration through their faith and devotion. They remind us all of our call to holiness in following Christ along the way of the Beatitudes.

I am deeply grateful to all the dedicated laity of our diocese and all who work in our parishes, schools, and other institutions. This cohort of workers serves the Church with much zeal and commitment. And there are many others who are very active in the Church in volunteer capacities, unselfishly sharing their time and talents in serving others. I often and reminded that the work of the Church would not continue if it not for these fine people!

During this past year, I have met so many who have also kindly welcomed me. I thank all of you for your example of faith, for living the Catholic faith through active participation in the Body of Christ, the Church. Now we begin yet another journey together – an exciting journey – and this coming Sunday will be the first of many stepping-stones! I ask for your presence – do what you must to be with us – as we make the most exciting announcement in the history of our parish and diocese. Please…show me your continued love and respect and join us at 10:30am this Sunday, June 14th 2015?

So, to humbly conclude, in thinking of one word to describe my feelings on this first anniversary, I would have to say “grateful.” I thank all of you for your kindness, goodness, and love.

See you this coming Sunday with great joy as we gather for a Sunday like no other!