Fr. Ravi is leading a pilgrimage in May to Portugal, Spain, France and Italy. If you are interested, please pick up the flyer from the parish office. .

THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD



Dearly beloved,

This weekend we celebrate the feast of the Baptism of the Lord which brings an end to the Christmas season. This feast, began to be celebrated on the octave (eighth day) of the feast of Epiphany, with the miracle at Cana celebrated on the Sunday after that. In the current liturgical calendar, the Baptism of the Lord is celebrated on the Sunday after January 6. In the Eastern Church this feast is called Theophany because at the baptism of Christ in the River Jordan God appeared in three persons.

Many of the incidents which accompanied Christ's baptism are symbolical of what happened at our Baptism. At Christ's baptism the Holy Spirit descended upon Him; at our Baptism the Trinity took its abode in our soul. At His baptism Christ was proclaimed the "Beloved Son" of the Father; at our Baptism we become the adopted sons and daughters of God. At Christ's baptism the heavens were opened; at our Baptism heaven was opened to us. For us baptism is the gateway to all the sacramental graces. Therefore, the Church encourages child baptism to instill that faith in people from the very young age. Let us pray for all young parents and little ones who are getting ready for the awesome gift of faith through baptism.

I want to take this opportunity to thank all members of our baptism team who spent so much time in preparing and coordinating this wonderful ministry.

In Christ,

Fr. James Cherickal, Pastor

The Epiphany of Our Lord




Dearly beloved in Christ,

It was my first Christmas here at St. Francis Xavier and must admit that it was beautiful. Thanks to your undivided support, prayers and gifts and cards. As it was the first, it was a learning time as well. To learn the wonderful ways that we celebrate Christmas here and to know who does what and the how of things.  In addition to all the burdens of parish administration, Joanita – our parish secretary has taken the lead role of Christmas decoration with her team and did a great job. The Christmas novena Masses was a faith affirming experience. The church was packed with faithful and sumptuous breakfast and the great fellowship among people was amazing. Thanks to all the leaders and members of various ministries and choirs who did a marvelous job. Almost 20 priests came out to hear confessions and remained for almost two and half hours. Without you all it would have been impossible. May God bless you.

I would like to join Fr. Ravi, Fr. Jim, Deacon John and Anthony with our office staff to wish you all a blessed, happy and healthy New Year.

Yours in Christ,


Fr. James Cherickal, Pastor

THE HOLY FAMILY OF JESUS, MARY AND JOSEPH


  

The feast of the holy family is celebrated every year after Christmas for centuries it has been regarded as a family feast. The themes of Christmas like the birth of a child, naming of the child, gathering together as a family to celebrate this event, makes this feast more meaningful.

Family life is under threat today, does not need much analysis. The pressures of secularism and modern life have minimized the significance of family life. Busy schedules, work stress, alienation from each other, etc.., means that families spend much less time together. For many, family life is restricted to socially required ceremonies at births, weddings and funerals. Family lives are moving in a secular realm leaving no room for the presence of the Holy. No meaning beyond themselves, no opening to transcendence leaving little room for mystery and sanctity, as it becomes increasingly subject to secularism and technology. And God is taken out from the experiences of daily life. What can the feast of the Holy Family mean in the face of this threat?

This feast reminds us that our families like the Holy Family of Nazareth should be built on the strong foundation that is Jesus Christ. To build means having Him as the center of our family. He is the fountain of holiness, love, peace, joy, hope from which we can draw the necessary vitamins and minerals for a healthy family and a holy family. Let us pray on this feast day for all the families that they may become holy.