The early dates of Easter (April 1) and Ash Wednesday (February 14) narrow the time between the completion of the Christmas season, the Nativity, the Baptism of the Lord and the Epiphany. The scripture readings during these short weeks have given us St. John and St. Marks insight to the Lord and the daily readings from the Old Testament and Book of Samuel have highlighted the struggles of Israel, the death of Samuel and the anointing of David as king.
Each year an additional collection is taken up at the discretion of Cardinal Sean. This year that collection will be taken up on Ash Wednesday and will be for the benefit of the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocesan for their far flung activities with the needy.
I want to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks for all the prayers, cards and best wishes during the last few weeks as I regain the use of my right hand after two metal plates were inserted around the stitches. If you are right handed, as am I, try to brush your teeth with your left hand or even try to make the sign of the cross, believe me, they are challenges.
This is also the first chance to express my thanks for all your kindness, cards and prayers at Christmas time. I am so indebted to Deacon Paul Rooney for keeping the ship afloat during my absence, and thanks, also, to my brother priests who have been so helpful in providing liturgy during these days. Some months ago Bishop Robert Barron author of the evangelical series Catholicism, wrote an article about his brief experience as a patient in a hospital. Those who have shared this experience know how humbling this can be where you are dependent upon others for every need, and how wonderful the staff are.
We ask God’s blessings upon all as we enter into the first months of the new year.
Fr John R. Mulvehill