Our Mission Statement at Most Holy Redeemer
Most Holy Redeemer Parish is a Roman Catholic Christian Community. The parish draws people from isolation to community, from searching to awakening, from indifference to concern, from selfishness to meaningful service, from fear in the midst of adversity to faith and hope in God.
The community of Most Holy Redeemer shares God’s compassionate love with all people. The parish offers a spiritual home to all: senior citizens and youth; single people and families; those who are straight, gay, lesbian, and transgender; the healthy and the sick, particularly persons with HIV/AIDS.
As a parish community, we celebrate God’s loving presence in our lives. In worship and sacrament, especially the Eucharist, we are nurtured and challenged to extend God’s kingdom of justice, truth, love and peace by growing in the spirit of Jesus, the Most Holy Redeemer.
Fr Matt’s Message – Pentecost 2019
Veni Sancte Spiritus!
The disciples were winded, out of breath. Doubt, grief, guilt, a sense of failure, and above all, winded by their own insecurity, their sense of not doing enough, of not getting it right. Breathless and afraid, they locked themselves away. The disciples of Jesus were hiding in fear behind closed and locked doors, shutting out the hostile world, a world, that was for them, full of suspicion and accusation. And then, a surprise! Jesus bursts into their isolation. He sought them out in their weakness, ignoring the locked doors they thought would keep everyone out. Yes, he was there. There to speak forgiveness and, above all, to give them the gift of the Spirit – the Spirit of the Second Chance, the Spirit of a love greater than their shame. “A Spirit,” as Fr. William Bausch, retired pastor and author says, “that would break down doors and send them out, now as a community of wounded, forgiven healers, to preach the Good News of God’s love. Oh, what a beginning, what a Pentecost that was!”
Empowered by the loving kindness and forgiveness that Jesus offered, empowered by the gift of the Holy Spirit, they left their hiding places and set out to courageously witness and preach the Good News.
I truly believe that people grow when they are given hope and when someone believes in them. Most importantly, people grow and are more likely to reach their potential when they know they are loved and when they can safely step out and take chances without the fear of recrimination if they fail. When we know we are loved, miracles can happen. We witness the miracle of human growth and transformation today in the feast of Pentecost. It is the miracle we are called to be a part of in our own homes and in the midst of the various communities to which we belong. We are called to recognize the gifts others bring to the table and to express gratitude for the gifts given, and maybe someone will occasionally do the same for our gifts freely given without any expectation of recognition or return.
Like the disciples, there are things which can keep us in hiding – fear, doubt anger, jealousy, an inability to forgive or to seek forgiveness. Jesus simply loved the disciples. He forgave them and helped them to forgive themselves. He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22). In giving them his breath, he helped them and he helps us to catch our own breath. In Pentecost, we celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit to the apostles and to us. We are called to witness and preach and live that Good News today and every day.
Veni Sancte Spiritus! Come Holy Spirit, enkindle in us the fire of your love, and we shall renew the face of the earth!
I will be away this coming week at Vallombrosa Retreat Center in Menlo Park, attending the annual retreat for priests serving in the Archdiocese of San Francisco. Know of my prayers for you as I humbly ask you to say a little prayer for me. Thank you for all you do!
With blessings, gratitude and prayers,