Dear Parishioners,

Happy Easter! A big ‘thank-you’ to everyone who helped prepare and present our beautiful Easter Ceremony’s. Easter joy was certainly evident, and people from the Ipswich Catholic Community made a statement that faith is real and active here – over 4500 people came to the Easter triduum in Churches.

Exaltation, sincerity of heart, indescribable and glorious joy – these are the words that describe the gathering of believers who formed the early Church after Pentecost. Filled with the Spirit, they committed themselves to “The Way” by caring for one another, following the teaching of the apostles, and breaking bread in their homes. Let’s pray that their commitment will continue to inspire us in 2017 to live out our faith in credible and tangible ways!

Imagine going to Mass every week and being greeted as an old friend or a new one, not worrying whether someone was genuine, and feeling that something miraculous and new was in the world. Why isn’t it this way in every church?

In an age that demands proof, I wonder whether we’ve grown suspicious of faith. In a culture that thinks most people have an angle, I wonder whether we have a hard time believing that someone could love us so much that he would die for us. Maybe we’ve all become a little more like Thomas in his doubt rather than in his belief. I keep returning to Peter’s words: “Although you have not seen him you love him.” 

It takes a remarkable faith to love someone you haven’t seen. But parents do it for their unborn children. We love those who have been taken from us in death. If we can love these, however imperfectly, surely we can love Christ, who died that we might live. Surely we can strive to love all people, known and unknown, because they are God’s children.

In the stories of the early Church, we see the evidence of love – joy and compassion for all. What if every church could do this today?

As we await the arrival of Fr Michael let’s pray that our community be strengthened with hope and love.

Have a good week

Stephen ofm