Mother Church presents for our celebration in the Octave of Christmas “the shining example of the Holy Family” of Jesus, Mary and Joseph to inspire our own St. Peter parish family of families. The parish, in the words of St. John Paul II is “the Church living in the midst of the homes of her sons and daughters (see Christifideles Laici, 26). All of you families in our parish constitutes members of the domestic church and like the Holy Family you are exposed to death threat of modern Herod who is working aggressively to snuff out divine light and life of family.
Today our families are not spared from the post-modern fragmentation that consistently mars family life in our culture. One of those agents of fragmentation is our mobile phones. I have observed many families hindered from having quality conversations over meals because each person is busy conversing with their phones. Christ must always be the center of family gathering, it is the only hope of family unity and cohesiveness. Even as family go through their difficulties and struggles (discords, disagreement, fights, anger, unforgiveness, etc.), Christ becomes the means by which they bear with one another and forgive one another (Col. 3:13).
My dear parish family, I am so blessed to have you. You are truly beautiful and I love you all. One of my favorite things about our parish family is the cheer gifts of lovely and cute children who are in our pews on Sundays and come forward to the altar to drop their gifts in the collection bag-it’s the most adorable and awesome moment to see the sign of continuity of the family parish participating actively in the sacred liturgy. Thanks to parents who are raising these children well, thanks to our Religious Education team who labor in union with their parents to pass on our Catholic faith to this children. May God continue to bless our parish family in the coming year.
It is exactly a year that I was assigned here by Bishop Gainer-December 28, 2018. It is my first Christmas with you. What a joy! I am blessed to be your pastor. I am loving you and learning a lot from you. May we continue to work together to grow our parish family around the Holy Eucharist in the coming year 2020 and beyond. Thanks to all of you who have made my year a beautiful one.
Have a Blessed New Year 2020!
Fr. Bernard Oniwe, OP