Our Good Shepherd

04-30-2023From the Pastor's DeskMonsignor Ellsworth R. Walden

In order to keep our wits about us and to find strength and courage to live truly good lives is not always easy. There are good days and challenging days. The good days are a joy while the challenging days can bring much fear, anger, worry, and sadness. Last Sunday we listened to the Gospel from Luke 24:13-25 where two of Jesus’ disciples were leaving Jerusalem three days after Jesus had died. Obviously they were filled with disappointment, worry, and sadness. They were wrapped up in their personal confusion and seeking peace. But they were going in the wrong direction. The Crucified Jesus was no longer their shepherd and guide. But He was! The Risen Jesus approached and walked with them and finally revealed Himself to them. At that point they turned around and went back to Jerusalem no longer as the place of defeat and death of their Savior, but the place where He rose from the dead and showed His power over sin and evil, the power we so sorely need in our world and in our personal lives.


Truly Living

04-23-2023From the Pastor's DeskMonsignor Ellsworth R. Walden

One of the things I enjoy is doing crossword puzzles. It is interesting to put words and clues together. As I read the Gospel for this Sunday (Luke 24:13-35) the word LIVE came to mind. In this passage the Risen Christ appeared to two of His disciples who were leaving Jerusalem on the Sunday after Jesus was crucified. They were leaving the scene of a terrible tragedy and disappointment. These two were in a state of confusion as they saw Jesus rejected, crucified, and buried. They had heard that He had risen, but they were skeptical and disoriented. Jesus did not condemn, abandon, or dismiss them but met them where they were - not just physically but mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. They wanted to LIVE as we all want to LIVE, with hope, purpose, meaning, security, and love. And Jesus enabled them to come to the light of hope, purpose, meaning, security, and love by His presence to them.


Hand in Hand

04-16-2023From the Pastor's DeskMonsignor Ellsworth R. Walden

Back in the 1970s there was a folk song sung at Masses entitled “Put Your Hand In The Hand Of The Man Who Stilled The Water.” Those lyrics came to mind when I read the Gospel for Mass (John 20:19-31) today as I was preparing my homily for this weekend’s Masses. This passage gives us the account of two post resurrection appearances of Jesus to His apostles. In the first appearance the disciples are behind locked doors as a group, for fear of those who crucified Jesus. The Risen Jesus came and took away their fears with these powerful words: “Peace be with you.” He repeated that greeting a second time and showed them His hands and his side which bore the scourge of His crucifixion. The disciples were overwhelmed and filled with joy. When they told St. Thomas of this appearance he refused to believe. The Gospel for today continues with the account of Jesus’ second appearance to them where He said to St. Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe.” 


04-09-2023From the Pastor's DeskMonsignor Ellsworth R. Walden

Happy Easter! How good it is to be alive, to be loved, and to be a source of love for those entrusted to our care and presence. Every day there are challenges and opportunities to rise beyond our own concerns and needs and be a positive force for others. Life is a gift. To see life as a gift is to “rise” above and beyond feelings of entitlement, ignorance, a desire to be in control, anger, disappointment, and a host of so many other negative feelings. It is not always easy to see the goodness and need for love in others and ourselves. Our society is bursting with reports of the faults and failures of public and not so public people. The almost blasé verse from Ecclesiastes 1:9 comes to mind: “What has been, that will be; what has been done, that will be done. Nothing is new under the sun!”