April 18, 2021
During the Easter Season we remind ourselves of our baptism through the sprinkling rite and by the renewal of our baptismal promises. As the prayer that precedes this rite reminds us “through the paschal mystery we have been buried with Christ in baptism, so that we may rise with him to a new life.” By renewing our baptismal promises, together as a community we personify this new reality: through our baptisms we were made new creations called to live for others, called to be an ongoing presence of Christ in the world that feeds the hungry, cares for the poor, and works for the reign of God.
The work of the baptized is not easy, and the source and summit that gives us strength and forms us into this ever-present Body of Christ is the Sunday Eucharistic liturgy. These celebrations both form us and transform us. They challenge us through the Table of the Word proclaimed and the homily that reflects upon it. They transform our bonds of relationship and reality through those forged in gathered community around the Table of bread and wine/Body and Blood. Through the profound communal encounter with sacramental real presence of Christ at communion, in the eating and drinking of the Body and Blood as the Body of Christ, we are ever more deeply becoming the reality called forth by God from our baptism, the People of God, sisters and brothers in Christ.
There is, however, a demand that is placed upon us, a responsibility required of us. This Sunday celebration of the life, death and resurrection of Christ upon which the direction of our own lives is fed, requires a response on our part, our active engagement, our full, conscious and active presence! Over the last year this has been difficult if not impossible for the vast majority of us. We have made do as best we can, whether by video services, daily scripture study, online livestream etc. Soon though, as we begin to reopen and reengage in our new normal, the Tables of Word and Sacrament call us back together. Our longing for one another calls us to return as community. We are not whole unless we are whole as one community in Christ. Therefore, with this goal in mind, we will be doing our best this summer as the weather warms to gather outside to celebrate the liturgy, where we can be together safely in greater numbers. Please watch the website for details and your email for notifications and updates on the weekends. The video liturgy which has acted as a bridge in these difficult times has accomplished its purpose. The virtual now gives way to the gathered. It is time! We are a living community and we are called in all our messy humanity to once more draw round the altar of God.
We hold in prayer those lost in this pandemic who will gather with us in our hearts and we give thanks that soon we may once more be present to one another as we are called to be through the waters of rebirth.
Rodica M. M. Stoicoiu, Ph.D.