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Divine Mercy Sunday and the Canonizations of John XXIII and John Paul II

Dear Visitors and Friends,

On Easter Sunday, the Resurrection of our Lord was proclaimed in tandem with parish renewal. The motive for renewal was given in a book that had been shared. A reference from the Final Chapter:

“Stop trying to make people go to church, and make church matter.”

“We’re spending all our time thinking about, plotting and scheming, or coaxing and commanding people to come to church, but we never even stop to consider that we don’t have anything to offer them (at least anything that they want).  We should be putting more thought and time into how we can make them want to come to church and want to come back.

People are hungering for more than what this world offers.  They know that the things of this world do not satisfy their hearts.  They know that more money, more entertainment, more sex, and more pleasure do not satisfy.  At the same time, they’ve just given up on the Church’s ability to answer their questions, offer solutions to their problems, or prove in any way relevant to their lives.

Most people are not far from God because they want to be.  They’ve just wandered off in that direction.  They are lost sheep, and rather than be the shepherds we’re called to be, we’ve just let them wander off.

We can be a generation that reverses that trend and changes the tide, if and when we start living up to our calling.  Rather than trying to make anybody do anything, how about if we create environments people want to be a part of?  We be sharing with them how the Word of God can help us live better, more successful lives an how church fellowship can provide support for our daily struggles.  We can help them come to know the Eucharist as the life-giving food of God that brings us Christ and can shape us into his Body.

We’re not here to make people fulfill and obligation.  The Church exists to reach out to the world and bring people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.  In the process, hearts can be healed, marriages saved, relationships restored, families made whole again, addictions overcome, anger abated, joy renewed, hope dawn, and love rule.  God is inviting our help in building healthy Catholic parishes of growing disciples who are falling in love with Jesus Christ.” Tools for Rebuilding, White and Corcoran, pp. 295-296

Please pray for renewal!

Best wishes always, Msgr. ESPowell

office@epiphanyparish.com 1000 East College Avenue, Normal, Illinois 61761 (309) 452-2585