“Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope,”
– 1 Peter 3:15
Thursday, October 11th was the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council; the 20th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the 3rd anniversary of the Canonization of St. Jeanne Jugan. Pope Benedict XVI chose this significant date to open the Year of Faith!
It is a special year for Catholics throughout the world to rediscover and share with others, the precious gift of Faith entrusted to the Church. We have a treasury rich in resources among the saints. We too are on a journey of faith encountering Christ daily.
St. Jeanne Jugan welcomed the invitation to follow Christ, placing him at the center and living according to the Gospel. Her faith was heroic.
To mark this day, St. Mary’s Home had a special Mass of celebration presided by Fr. Louis Morrone, O.P., Dominican Vicar Provincial. As the service ended, Father Marrone briefly explained the Year of Faith, inviting all to “strengthen our faith in Christ and to joyfully announce Him to the men and women of our time.” Then we confided the whole year to Mary, our model of faith – “Blessed is she who believed.” The Catechism of the Catholic Church eloquently states that “In Mary we contemplate what the Church already in her mystery on her own ‘pilgrimage of faith’ and what she will be in the homeland at the end of her journey. There in the glory of the Most Holy and undivided Trinity, in the communion of all the saints, the Church is awaited by the one she venerates as Mother of her Lord and her own Mother.”
To emphasize our commitment to bring the Good News with us wherever we go, the doors of the chapel, which are normally always opened, were closed. Father then led the congregation out the doors holding a beautiful icon of Our Lady of Consolation, which we placed in the vestibule of the Chapel for the year. A portrait of St. Jeanne Jugan – faithful daughter of the church, followed in procession to be placed on a side panel for the month of October. Each month, during the next 13 months, we will select a Saint to study and learn about their faith, to encourage “every one of us to become a living sign of the presence of the Risen Lord in the world.”
We look forward to this year, listening to the Holy Spirit to nourish our faith and our lives!