Dear Brothers and sisters
“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom God favours!”(Luke 2:13-14)
As we celebrate the birth day of the Babe of Bethlehem, I wish you “A joyous, peaceful and grace -filled Christmas and a hopeful, prosperous, and promising New Year-2015." I pen to express my greetings to you and your families. I think not only of those who live within our parish but also your family members, dear and near ones, on this special season of the year.
Christmas reminds us that our God is not a distant God but a God who is with us,-“Emmanuel.” May the Emanuel God find place in our hearts and homes. During this season, we Christians, remember and celebrate that sacred moment in human history when God entered in our world, becoming part of every one of us and the whole human race. Christmas brings us back to the source of our life and existence. God has come into the world, with His love, peace and hope that makes us joyful and rejoicing. His light has shone in our darkness and no darkness can overpower this light.
As a priest, for many years, in this parish of our lady of the Rosary, I feel privileged and so uplifted by the huge number of the dedicated parishioners who minister, in many ways, alongside us, the priests, with dedication and enthusiasm. In truth you are the heart of the parish. Working together we aim to have a parish that is inclusive where everyone is and feels welcome. This always gives a feeling of a “One Family” which Christ wants to create in us. On this special season, I wish to leave a note of gratitude for your participation, support and generosity in making this parish a 'Family'
I pray that the presence of the Christ-Child will grace your home during this Christmas season and throughout the coming year -2015. May God bless you.
With Prayers and Blessings
Yours in the Lord,
Fr. Selvaraj Arockiam OFM, Cap.
CATHOLIC CHURCH OF OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY
APOSTLE PETER & PAUL, Solemnity
29 JUNE 2015 (MONDAY)
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles Acts 12:1-11
Now I know for certain that the Lord rescued me from the hand of Herod.
In those days, King Herod laid hands upon some members of the Church to harm them. He had James, the brother of John, killed by the sword ,and when he saw that this was pleasing to the Jew she proceeded to arrest Peter also.–It was the feast of Unleavened Bread.–He had him taken into custody and put in prison under the guard of four squads of four soldiers each. He intended to bring him before the people after Passover. Peter thus was being kept in prison, but prayer by the Church was fervently being made to God on his behalf.
On the very night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter, secured by double chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while outside the door guards kept watch on the prison. Suddenly the angel of the Lord stood by him and a light shone in the cell. He tapped Peter on the side and awakened him, saying, “Get up quickly.” The chains fell from his wrists. The angel said to him, “Put on your belt and your sandals. ”He did so. Then he said to him, “Put on your cloak and follow me.” So he followed him out, not realizing that what was happening through the angel was real; he thought he was seeing a vision. They passed the first guard, then the second, and came to the iron gate leading out to the city, which opened for them by itself. They emerged and made their way down an alley, and suddenly the angel left him. Then Peter recovered his senses and said, “Now I know for certain that the Lord sent his angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people had been expecting.”
The Word of the Lord.
R. The Lord delivered me from all my fears.
1. I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall be ever in my mouth. Let my soul glory in the LORD; the lowly will hear me and be glad. R.
2. Glorify the LORD with me, let us together extol his name. I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. R.
3. Look to him that you may be radiant with joy, and your faces may not blush with shame. When the poor one called out, the |LORD heard, and from all his distress he saved him. R.
4. The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Taste and see how good the OR is; blessed the man who takes refuge in him. R
A reading from the second Letter of Saint Paul to Timothy
From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me.
I, Paul, am already being poured out like a libation, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me, which the Lord, the just judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but to all who have longed for his appearance. The Lord stood by me and gave me strength, so that through me the proclamation might be completed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was rescued from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil threat and will bring me safe to his heavenly Kingdom. To him be glory forever and ever. Amen
The Word of the Lord.
You are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew
You are Peter, and I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven.
When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
CELEBRANT: We bring our intentions to the Father with that same faith of the Apostles Peter and Paul, with the faith of the fisherman on whom the Church is built, and the faith of the teacher of so many nations.
R/ Lord, Hear Our Prayer
1. That Pope Francis , successor of St |Peter, may bear the keys of the Kingdom with wisdom and love., Let us pray to the Lord. R/
2. That missionaries in foreign lands may have the zeal which St. Paul had in bringing the Good News. Let us pray to the Lord. R/
3. That we may love our faith and eagerly share it with others. Let us pray to the Lord. R/
4. That those who are suffering on account of their faith may find strength in the blood shed by the Apostles. Let us pray to the Lord. R/
5. That the faithful departed may be made worthy of the crown of righteousness. Let us pray to the Lord. R/
CELEBRANT: Almighty God and Father, hear the prayers of this community gathered in the faith of the Apostles and helped by their intercessions. We ask this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.