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Dear St. Mary’s and Sacred Heart Family,

In last Sunday’s Gospel we heard Jesus say, “The last will be first, and the first will be last” (Mt. 20:16a).

In the year 2020 we have discovered what many of our government leaders throughout the country have deemed “essential.” It is clear many of our government leaders don’t care about your spiritual needs. We have been placed at the back of the line, so to speak. Remember the promise of our Lord, “The last will be first, and the first will be last.”

What it means to go to the end of the line, to put oneself among the last, is to keep coming to Mass, keep giving witness to the primacy of God, keep serving the poor, keep educating, keep persevering, and keep offering your life in so many ways for those who are marginalized. Without saying anything, you tell a story that your faith is essential.

Jesus tells his first disciples, “follow me,” and he says the same to His Bride, the Church. I think it is fair to say that the Church is on the road to Calvary, following Jesus. To persevere, we must be spiritually grounded. On September 12th, the Feast of the Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary, many of us consecrated ourselves to Mary. I encourage you all to keep living the consecration, so that we remain spiritually grounded. How? By praying the rosary daily, and as a family at least once a week. Live the consecration by spending at least one hour a week in adoration of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. Live the consecration by fasting on Fridays and by frequently availing yourselves of the sacrament of Penance.

If you have not been fostering and nurturing your relationship with the Lord for any period of time, please take consolation from this Sabbath’s Gospel. Jesus tells a parable inviting two workers to work in His vineyard. The first says he would not, but later changed his mind. The second said yes, but did not go. If you at first decline the invitation to ground yourself in the Lord, change your mind and come now, like the first worker in the gospel.

What good is our spiritual grounding? It will elevate us to move in God’s ways and think with God’s thoughts. May God grant us this grace, for his glory and for the healing of Sault Ste. Marie, of our diocese, of our country, and of the entire world.

In Christ,

Fr. Nick

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