Dear Friends in Christ,
On this First Sunday of Lent, Christ assures us that He is indeed the fulfillment of the Kingdom of God. He comes with the waters of baptism to cleanse us from our sins. His most precious Blood flows forth, and we are ransomed from death. Christ leads us to the victory of His Cross unto life everlasting.
Christ seals the Father's covenant of love. Even unto the end, Christ breathed His last as a sacrificial love offering for each one of us, so that we too might share in that mutual love between Him and the Father. The last breath, the last drop of blood has been poured out by Christ in total selfless love for us.
This season of Lent is a sacred time to reflect and meditate on that unfathomable love of Christ for us. Christ takes us back to Calvary, and carries us to the foot of the Cross. Beneath the Cross, we witness how much all our sufferings, pain, difficulties and travails have been borne by Christ in His outstretched love.
Let Christ's love be the igniting force of all our Lenten offering, sacrifices, fasting, prayer and almsgiving. Let Christ's love, alive in each Eucharistic sacrifice, draw us ever deeper and closer to Himself. Let Christ's love, waiting for us in the confessional, move us to repent of our sins and be reconciled with God and one another. Let Christ's love, descending to us through His Divine Spirit, empower us to believe in and spread the good news of His saving love.
No matter what we are going through right now, look at the Cross and be comforted by the love which Christ bears for us. For in the end, we know that Christ will raise us up with Him and bring us to His kingdom for eternity.
With prayers that the week ahead will be filled with profound gratitude to God for His redeeming love and for all that He has done for us.
In Christ, with Lenten blessings,
Rev. Jonathan Paala
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
“This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:14-15)