Our Mission Statement at Most Holy Redeemer
Most Holy Redeemer Parish is a Christian Community in the Roman Catholic tradition. The parish draws people from isolation to community, from searching to awakening, from indifference to concern, from selfishness to meaningful service, from fear in the midst of adversity to faith and hope in God.
The community of Most Holy Redeemer shares God’s compassionate love with all people. The parish offers a spiritual home to all: senior citizens and youth; single people and families; those who are straight, gay, lesbian, and transgendered; the healthy and the sick, particularly persons with HIV disease.
As a parish community, we celebrate God’s loving presence in our lives. In worship and sacrament, especially the Eucharist, we are nurtured and challenged to extend God’s kingdom of justice, truth, love and peace by growing in the spirit of Jesus, the Most Holy Redeemer.
Fr. Jack’s Message
Next weekend is Labor Day. Living in the Bay area offers ample opportunity to notice how the notion and term of “Labor” has changed and is changing. As we reflect on worker’s unions, we remember how active our Roman Catholic Church and how both clergy and laity have been involved historically. That is different today. Observe how you think of those who provide the hard labor, the “Help”, if you will.
Notice how the United States Roman Catholic experience has changed and is changing. Some consider the changes as a progression; others consider the changes to be variances, and some even labeled (and dismissed) as sin. Some are more nervous about the changes than others. We’re having to learn to live with changed and changing societal attitudes and mores. We feel the impact of the uncertainty of the struggle. There is suggestion in this weekend’s readings.
The Letter of St. James assures us that all good giving and every perfect gift are reflections of God. Notice the good giving and gift receiving are presented as parallels, and obviously equal in their spiritual value. The selection from James ends with clarity that causes confusion for more than a few. He says, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”
Unfortunately, there are great political and religious discrepancies about who qualifies as widow or orphan and keeping one’s self unstained by the world is no easy task. Mark’s gospel sums it up for us. Our service, our ministry, and our responses come from within. He records Jesus as saying, “Hear me all of you, and understand. ’Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person; but the things that come from within are what defile.”
For those who prayed with us last Lent, we recall that Season’s sung prayer, “Turn my heart, O God. Turn my heart, O God. Take my pain and brokenness. Shape my life for you. Come and turn my heart, O God.” And may the words and actions of our changed and changing hearts bring great comfort, joy, and nourishment to the widows and orphans of our neighborhoods. May we be of encouragement and assistance for each other as we participate in a world that is less polite, less kind, and less loving than we’d have it be and more challenging than we wish. May we do right things so all People are called to be God’s living presence of Peace.
Prayers and Peace,