June 1, 2020
Now that I have concluded my “Thoughts from the Bishop’s Chapel,” I wish to thank all of you who so graciously expressed your gratitude for my humble efforts in this regard.
When I began this effort 74 reflections ago, I had just announced the temporary cessation of public worship in our churches due to the pandemic. I realized that many of you attend daily Mass and thought that you would appreciate a daily reflection to make up for the lack of a daily homily. Therefore, the reflections were almost entirely based on the Gospel for the day. Appropriately, I thought, they began shortly before Holy Week and continued until Pentecost, the conclusion of Lent and the entire Easter Season.
Pentecost marks not only the birthday of the Church but also a more accelerated return of our parish churches to public services. I look forward to returning to some predictability but would hope that we have learned something during this time of deprivation. What is that? That we should not take God’s gifts for granted. This begins with the Eucharist but includes every facet of our lives. Every friendship, family member, time at prayer, celebration of a Sacrament, meal together, quiet moment, social encounter—whatever is good—these are gifts from God. Christians are people of the Incarnation. The Word of God became Flesh in Jesus Christ. This is a sacramental reality. And the presence of God, through His Son Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit, shows itself in every moment of our lives, beginning with our Sacraments but continuing in the living of our Christian lives. Everything that is good, true, wholesome, just, loving, and virtuous is an occasion to see God at work. God bless all of you!