Laudato Si'

06-28-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Laudato Si'

Dear Family of God,

Our Holy Father's latest Encyclical entitled: "LAUDATO SI', mi' Signore" – "Praise be to you, my Lord". In the words of this beautiful canticle, Saint Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. "Praise be to you, my Lord, through our Sister, Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with colored flowers and herbs". (#1)

The main theme of this Encyclical is: "On the Care of Our Common Home". All of creation is interconnected. The main problem of our society is not acknowledging our Creator and man taking the place of God. The Pope said, "A spirituality which forgets God as all-powerful and Creator is not acceptable. That is how we end up worshipping earthly powers, or ourselves usurping the place of God, even to the point of claiming an unlimited right to trample his creation underfoot. The best way to restore men and women to their rightful place, putting an end to their claim to absolute dominion over the earth, is to speak once more of the figure of a Father who creates and who alone owns the world. Otherwise, human beings will always try to impose their own laws and interests on reality."( #75).

I encourage you all to read this social teaching of the Church in full at www.vatican.va.

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

Happy Father's Day!

06-21-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Happy Father's Day

Dear Family of God,

We have a God who created, owns and is in control of the universe, yet out of love for each one of us, "He indeed died for all, so that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for Him who for their sake died and was raised" (2 Corinthians 5:15).

"The wind and the sea obey Him" (Mark 4:41), may we all have faith in Him and live our lives no longer for ourselves, but for Him who loved us, and let us leave behind our old ways, our selfish ways, "So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold new things have come" (2 Cor. 5:17). Let us live our lives as persons truly redeemed by Christ and who have full trust in Him. May all fathers build a strong relationship and bond with Jesus, so that their families are secured and vibrant in the strong and firm foundation of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Happy Father's Day and God bless all fathers. Saint Joseph, Patron Saint of fathers, pray for us. Amen.

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

Being Humble like a Child

06-14-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

On Friday, June 12th, the Church celebrated the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and on Saturday, June 13th it celebrated the Feast Day of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. These two feasts recall the burning love of Jesus and Mary for the Church. They also call us to true humility of heart in an imitation Christ and his mother. During his recent trip to Sarajevo, Pope Francis, reflecting on the love of the Heart of Jesus, invited us all to think of Christ's immense love for all of us, and especially for children. "Many children throughout the world do not have the freedom to play or to go to school, and end up being exploited as cheap labor", he said. "I hope that the international community will commit itself diligently and constantly to promoting the active recognition of childhood rights". The Pope's comments also come, not coincidentally, preceding the World Day Against Child Labor which is sponsored by the UN and will be held on June 12th.

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The Feast of Corpus Christi

06-07-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the feast of Corpus Christi. On this day we celebrate with great solemnity the most precious of gifts. Jesus said: "For my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink…Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever." It was at the Last Supper, the First Mass, that Jesus instituted the Holy Eucharist. He told his disciples to perpetuate the memorial of his death by the celebration of the breaking of bread. However, the Mass is not just a memorial, or community meal, but rather it is a true sacrifice re-presenting the one sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. Each time we gather for Mass we are truly present at the foot of the Cross with Jesus and looking on with awe and wonder with the Blessed Virgin Mary and the beloved disciple. In the Mass, the ordinary becomes extraordinary. Regular bread and wine made with human hands, are transformed into, not just a symbol, but the actual Body and Blood of Christ by the Holy Spirit through the action of the priest. This is why the Eucharist is to be treated with so much devotion and reverence! Jesus, then, is truly present in the tabernacle, always waiting for us to return to Him.

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Love One Another

05-17-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

How do we truly "love one another as Jesus loves us? Jesus loves with a divine love, infinite and perfect. Our love is very different: human, limited, flawed. The only way we could love as He loves is if His love were to somehow flow through us to others. He would have to fill us with His love for others.  

This is exactly what He does. Last Sunday Jesus described this mystery with the image of the vine and the branches. The Love of the Vine does flow through all the branches as long as we remain in Him. He is the One who makes it possible for us to love one another as He loves us. How do we do this? By abiding with Jesus always. How? By becoming a saint. How do we become a saint?  

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The Legion of Mary

05-03-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

I am glad to announce that on the Feast Day of Saint Joseph last March 19th, we started a Legion of Mary group here in our parish. Our weekly meetings are every Thursday, 7:00pm at Atrium Building, (South-West of the Church).

What is Legion of Mary?
Legion of Mary is the largest apostolic organization of lay men and women in the Catholic Church with well over 3 million active members in almost every country of the world. It was founded by Servant of God Frank Duff, on September 7, 1921 in Dublin, Ireland. It has been active in the United States since 1931, has known continuous Papal approval and was endorsed by the Second Vatican Council.

What does it do? Who can be members?
The Legion, assigned in pairs each week, performs various Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy, e.g. visiting the sick or the homebound, and helps its members to be active Catholics, through its balanced program of prayer and service in union with the Holy Spirit as He operates through Mary, Mother of the Church. It gives its members an opportunity to do something positive for the People of God while at the same time deepening their spiritual life and strengthening their Catholic Faith. As a Spiritual Director in the three previous parishes I was assigned, I experienced growth in faith and joy by its members and of my own love and service for God's people. Any active Catholic, male or female, young or not-so-young, single or married, who would like to draw closer to Jesus and His Mother are all invited to join us.

For more information please contact Lori Huber at lorihuber6@hotmail.com.

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

World Day of Prayer for Vocations

04-26-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

Today is Good Shepherd Sunday. Today is also the World Day of Prayer for Vocations which has been celebrated by our Holy Mother Church for the past half century. On this day we ask Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd "to send us laborers for the harvest." While we are all called to imitate Christ, some in the Church are called to more closely imitate Jesus as the Good Shepherd; to be priests and religious in a consecrated life to the Lord. Priests and religious are not "hired help", but rather they give their whole lives to the Church.

From our first reading, knowing Peter and other Apostles as ordinary, uneducated men, but empowered by Christ to preach the Gospel to all nations, we can know the truth that God calls and transforms whomever He chooses. There is a saying that "God does not call the qualified, but He qualifies the called." Also from the Book of Samuel, when the prophet was to anoint the successor of King Saul, we learn that while we judge by appearances, God looks at directly into a person's heart.

Nobody is worthy to be a Priest or Religious, but God called us in our weakness for He loves us not in spite of our weakness but in our weakness. Our task is to trust in Him, and when we have enough faith in Him, He will work in us and transform us into men and women after His own heart. May each family pray and be open to the possibility of their children having a vocation to priesthood or religious life so as to work for the establishment of the Kingdom of God here on earth.

Yours in Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

Divine Mercy Sunday

04-12-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

WHAT IS MERCY? WHERE DO WE FIND IT?

Mercy is a gift from God for all of us His Children. He has given it to us because He knows how desperately we need it especially in our times. Our Pope Francis knows exactly that the world needs it now more than ever, so he decided to Celebrate an “Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy” this coming December 8, 2015 until November 20, 2016, Christ the King Sunday. This coming Jubilee Year is focused on God’s Mercy.

The source of Mercy is God Himself, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, “pierce with a lance, there flowed from His side water and blood.” St. John Chrysostom said in his Catechesis: “Water and blood symbolized Baptism and the Holy Eucharist, which flowed from His side, it was from his side that Christ fashioned the Church, just like He had fashioned Eve from the side of Adam… as God then took a rib from Adam’s side to fashion a woman, so Christ has given us blood and water from his side to fashion the Church. God took the rib when Adam was in a deep sleep, and in the same way Christ gave us the blood and water after His own death.”

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Happy Easter

04-05-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever" (Ps. 118:1).

These inspired words from the Psalm are fitting words to express our great joy that Jesus is raised from the dead. We cannot but proclaim our thanks to the Lord for setting us free from sin and death. Death was our most fierce enemy. Jesus' victory over death is our victory too; for all of us who are united with Him in faith and living a new way of life guided by the Holy Spirit.

When Jesus rises from the dead, He not only defeats death, He defeats it definitively and forever. As Saint Paul said: "We know that Christ, raised from the dead, dies no more; death no longer has power over Him" (Rom. 6:9). Alleluia! St. Paul also addresses us saying: "Brothers and sisters: Are you unaware that we who are baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? We were indeed buried with Him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in newness of life" (Rom. 6:3-4).

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Holy Week

03-29-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

We are now entering the most Holy Week of the year, when we recall how our Lord saved us from our sins by His Passion, Death and Resurrection. He went through the most humiliating form of death in order to show us how much He loves us.

How do we response to this great act of love to our God? He told us: "This is my new commandment, love one another as I love you," also, "There is no greater love than to lay down your life for your friend." His challenge is that we should imitate the way He loves us. Only with God's help we can do this, to die to our selfishness in order to truly love our neighbor.

May we help others to encounter God, by sharing in their deepest needs and then sharing our faith and joy in the Gospel.

May Mary, the star of Evangelization intercede for us.

Yours in Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

The Word

03-22-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

The Word

Dear Family of God,

Last week we had our Lenten Parish Mission with Thomas Smith. Thomas Smith was very energetic and offered many deep reflections. Over the three days of the mission he reflected on the three pillars of the Christian life, namely:  the Word, Worship, and Works of Mercy.

The Word is not just the written word in the Bible, but He is a Person, Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God. Worship, especially the Mass, is not only something we do for a moment or an event, but a way of life, an intimate relationship with our Creator, who loves us so much that He became one of us. This is the Mystery of Incarnation, God in Jesus Christ, "the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us." And as God the Father is merciful to us, we need to perform works of Mercy for each other too. As Francis our Pope is challenging us to do: "be islands of mercy in the midst of a sea of indifference in the world." This is how the world will know that we are Christians, if we have love for one another, especially the least, the poor, the marginalized.

We have learned that when the Bible says to have "good eyes" it means to have generous eyes that see the needs of others and to be moved to help them in their need. Then we will be light to others who live in darkness of indifference.

May the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of Mercy, help us all to be merciful.

Yours in Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

We come to Mass to worship God and to thank God

03-08-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

Why do we wait for the collection to be finished before the gifts are brought to the Altar? The collection, the bread and the wine symbolize the offering of the people. They represent the sacrifices we make during the week; they represent our whole selves as an offering to God. We offer all of them to God the Father, in union with Christ who did not hold back anything, but give Himself totally for our salvation.

The Mass is first of all the same Sacrifice of Jesus Christ as our Redeemer; we unite ourselves with Him now for our own Salvation and of the world. The Mass is a Thanksgiving, our way of thanking God for His Great love for us that He sends to us Jesus as our Lord and Savior. We come to Mass to acknowledge and show our gratitude for this great love of God; of becoming like us and giving us His Body and Blood as a perpetual offering and proof that He is always with us. The Mass is also a meal uniting us whole as One Body of Christ and Him as our Head.

May our first attitude in coming to Mass be to worship God and to thank Him for everything He has given us, especially for giving us Jesus and the Holy Spirit to sanctify us and help us to be in communion with the Holy Trinity now and in Heaven.

May Our Lady of Joy help us to be grateful to God and be eager to share His Love with others.

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

Continuing on our Lenten journey

03-02-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear members of the Family of God,

It is ten days since we started this Season of Lent, a season for repentance and conversion, a season of redirecting our life with God and His will, a season to move closer to Him and away from mere worldly pleasures or comfort. During this time we are called to not only give up something, but to make sacrifices in order to express our love for God and our neighbors. We should make quality time for prayers and good works. We make sacrifices in order to be filled with the love of God and in return we share this same love with the needy and with our own family members.

May we all not just fast from food or other comfort, but fast from indifference towards others and accept the challenge of Pope Francis, to be "islands of mercy in the sea of indifference" in this world we are in. May our Lenten practices draw us and others closer to God.

Let us not forget to offer prayers and sacrifices for our persecuted brothers and sisters around the world. We pray that the persecuted continue to feel the presence of God amidst their trials and tribulations. May their faith be strong and our hope renewed in the resurrection of our bodies. May the blood of our Christian martyrs help build up our Church and strengthen our faith and unity.

Please listen to the interview from 2/23/15 episode of The Bishop's Hour. Our Lenten Mission speaker, Thomas Smith was interviewed. Thomas speaks on the Old Testament Prophets and of the upcoming Parish Mission at Our Lady of Joy. Note: Thomas Smith begins to speak 16 minutes into the episode.  

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty

My Pilgrimage to the Phillipines

02-11-2015Pastor LetterFr. Jesus Ty

Dear Family of God,

Last month I went on a pilgrimage to be present at one of the three Masses celebrated by Pope Francis while he was in the Philippines. Specifically I was about 30 feet away from the altar when the Pope celebrated Mass at the ground-zero of the destructive typhoon “Haiyan”. We were fervently praying for the Pope’s plane to land safely, for on the day he visited Tacloban City, another typhoon was approaching the same place. There were strong winds and pouring rain and everybody was wearing yellow ponchos or raincoats. What a joy when the plane carrying the Pope finally landed after 15-minute circling in the air.

Many reflected that God allowed Pope Francis to experience what it is like to live in Leyte, which sees many typhoons each year. I think it was the first time a Pope celebrated Mass wearing a rain poncho. I am certain that he will never forget his experience that day, Saturday (January 17, 2015) when 200,000 people were present at Mass and another 300,000 were standing by the highway where he passed by while traveling from the Airport to the Cathedral at Palo, the adjacent town. But more so, many Filipinos will never forget the love, mercy, and compassion that their Chief Shepherd showed them, by his being one with them in their sufferings and triumphs and assuring them that “the Lord will not fail them, the Lord is with us, He suffers with us, He knows what we are going through, He will never abandon us.” He assured his love and oneness with typhoon victims by concluding his homily: “I have no more words to say, but silence; my silent- heart journeying one with you. Let us continue our journey with Jesus our Lord who will never forsake us.”

I also got to visit with my friends and relatives, enjoyed the beauty of God’s creation, and went swimming at a few of the beaches of the 7,100 plus islands of the Philippines.

I am glad to be back and I feel refreshed after my 19-day visit to the Philippines, never minding the 15-hour difference and jet-lag. As we are about to begin the Lenten Season, may we imitate our Pope in reaching out to those in need, showing God’s mercy and compassion to all we meet.

In Christ,
Fr. Jess Ty