Children: This week, take some time to write a list of all of the good things you love about your family members. God sees us and what we can become, His love is unconditional and we are challenged to love like Him. God wants us to look at the good in others as well, knowing that we all have the potential to love and deserve to know we are loved by others.
Take a moment to reflect on Jesus and His presence in your life. Pray together, aloud, the Our Father.READ MORE
Our journey as Catholics is not yet complete – God has much more in store for us! He calls us to step out in faith, to deepen our walk with Him and to bring others to an encounter of His love: to become Disciples and to Evangelize through our words and lives.
Every parish and mission in our Diocese will join together for a historic effort: a campaign for Discipleship and Evangelization that will impact millions today and in the future. Through our prayer and generosity, we will support important Evangelization and Discipleship efforts throughout our Diocese:READ MORE
We have embarked on the important journey of making STEWARDSHIP a way of life here at our parish. To that effect, I have written several articles and preached many homilies on this topic. Central to the understanding of stewardship is recognizing that everything we have is given freely to us by God. Everything! Our time, talent, treasure, health, children, parents, spouses, jobs. These gifts are given to us to be cherished, cultivated, and increased and shared generously in gratitude with others; and in our case through our Church, St. Andrew the Apostle.READ MORE
Children: Spend some time with your family this week discussing how we can all show more faith in God's plan for our lives. Sometimes when we pray, we expect to receive an answer from God right away, but that does not of ten happen. Why do you think it is difficult to wait for God? Why might it be important for us, as families, to continuously go to God in prayer, even if and when we feel tired or discouraged or frustrated? We need to always remember that God knows what we truly need and He works in His time to provide for His children.READ MORE
Adults/Teens: Jesus is the Divine Physician. All who come to Him and believe that He can heal them will be healed. The difference bet ween the men whom He healed in the Gospel reading is that only one repented and returned to Him. Jesus tells the man that his faith has saved him; in other words, the man believed with his whole heart that Jesus could transform his life and He did. We too can experience the same power. Knowing and believing in our hearts that God holds our lives in His tender hands should bring us peace and comfort. Through all of life's storms, and especially when God answers prayers in a way that differs from how we would want them answered, we can be assured that He loves us dearly and knows what is best.READ MORE
Over the past week, several people, have asked me what the crosses hanging in our courtyard are all about. Well, here at our parish St. Andrew the Apostle, each year, we join the entire Church in dedicating the month of October to celebrating the sanctity of life. During this month, we emphatically pray for an end to abortion through saying special prayers, intentions, posters and through symbols.
This is because, we as Catholics, believe that we have an inherent dignity given to each one of us by God who made us in His own image and likeness at the very moment of our conception. That is why to us, every life is precious from the moment of conception and will remain so until natural death.
Sadly however, coming to that question, these many crosses in our courtyard here at St. Andrew represent mostly those children whose lives were cut short by abortion; but they also represent any life that is deliberately taken before its natural end through other means, such as by euthanasia, assisted suicide, capital punishment, and so forth.READ MORE
Adults/Teens: We must remember that the call to follow the Lord comes when God chooses, not when we choose. We are all servants of God and the Master is looking for us to have "faith the size of a mustard seed." We are called to put the Lord first in our lives at all cost. God has a plan for when we will be called to action on his behalf; are we doing all we can to listen to that call?READ MORE
One of our five-year strategic goals is to address the pastoral, spiritual, and religious education needs of our entire parish community. In keeping with this goal, we endeavor to meet all these needs by purposefully embracing and welcoming our children with special needs to our community. This is because, we know that the parish is the proper place where the catechetical and spiritual needs of our families can be met. Know therefore that, as your pastor, I take very seriously this unique spiritual opportunity and responsibility.
In a video message I released on our Parish Facebook page last week (www.facebook.com/SaintAndrewAZ), I briefly mentioned that in our Religious Education program, we are now offering Special Needs Religious Education. In this program, we already now have eight children receiving one-on-one attention while four are attending the traditional program but with specialized modifications according to their needs. Through this program, we provide a welcoming and caring atmosphere which at the same time provides a safe, quiet, joyful, and reverent environment where these children with special needs (Kindergarten to 18 years) can establish a relationship with God while working at their own pace and rhythm.READ MORE