HALLELUJA! The Lord is risen.

Dear friends and parishioners.

      Today I want to sing with you “hallelujah” because the Lord is really risen among us. First of all, I want to say “thank you” to so many good people who are giving of themselves to the church and to the community. Fr. Santo the other day told me: “I have never seen so many people helping our church”. Yes, it is a huge grace of God having so many good people putting their heart and soul into our community for the honor and love of God.

     We have started something like a movement of personal consecration both to Mary and to Joseph. I could not believe that 225 people have decided to walk together with us for the consecration to St. Joseph; and now we have another group going for another Consecration on May first. Other people are asking for another preparation to a new Marian consecration. I feel that so many flowers are blooming in the little garden of our parish.

    Covid-19 for us has been a real awakening of faith; I have never seen so many people for confession and especially for the Eucharistic Adoration every day of the week. This is the real fountain of grace.

    We have started a new program for the children of First Holy Communion. Our focus now is on the family, more than on the children. We consider the first communion as the FIRST STEP of real commitment of the CHRISTIAN FAMILY. It is the first communion of the family! We are going to work hard to form “New Christian Families” that teach and walk together with their children. We want to start a “new generation” of Catholics, who put God at the center of their families. For me, this is the new Catholic Church. We have lost one generation of baptized, and now we want to re-start this new generation. We will be forming small groups of catholic families, who want to journey together in the faith of their children. (Early Catholic Family Life)

     We have a great CONFIRMATION PROGRAM, (ROC = Rite of Confirmation) which is more experiential and hopefully will continue into becoming a permanent YOUTH GROUP in the parish. We have to change our mind set and treat our catechism, no more as a “class” or as a “program” but as a “ongoing spiritual celebration” of the various mysteries of our faith. At the basis of it all is THE FAMILY.

    Now that we are solely going back to an in-person celebration we feel more committed to work and support our young families. I am so grateful to the fathers, the staff, the volunteers who are available 24/7 in a loving service to our community. I am happy to see the various communities growing and organizing themselves: The Italians, the Spanish and now the Tamil and Nigerian Community; they all find their home here with us.

     This year we will follow the invitation of Pope Francis and we will dedicate a lot of effort on the theme of “Amoris Laetitia Family”.

We will be in touch and for now I just want to say thanks to God, thanks to all the volunteers and tanks to you. Blessings and Joy from the risen Lord, who is back with us from the tomb for a journey full of hope and unity. On behalf of the fathers, deacon, staff and volunteers, HAPPY EASTER.

About Fr. Walter

Father Walter Tonelotto was born in Italy in 1947 and entered the Scalabrini Seminary at an early age. At 20 he was sent by his superiors to study Theology at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie, New York and then to the Toronto School of Theology. He holds a Master in Divinity from St. Paul’s University in Ottawa and a Master in Moral Theology from Union Theological Seminary at Columbia University, New York City.