Pastor's Message

Weekly notes offered by our pastor, Father Paul Counce

Lessons from the Man Born Blind

Published: March 26, 2017

Dear Parishioners and Friends,

Our Lenten Sunday Bible readings continue to highlight some very important spiritual lessons. These are not only important for catechumens and other candidates for the Easter Sacraments of Initiation, but for us all.

This weekend another lengthy Gospel passage from John is proclaimed: the episode of Jesus’ interaction with the “Man Born Blind” (9:1-41). Some of its lessons are obvious, some not so much so.

Probably the most obvious lesson is Jesus’ direct denial of a popular error, both in His own day as well as now, that “bad things” that happen to us in this world are somehow a punishment for sin. “Neither he nor his parents sinned,” the Lord bluntly says. God does not cause evil. Neither is God some kind of puppet-master, pulling strings in our lives based upon whim: if unfortunate things occur it is due to His refusal to overrule our free will and the just laws of science and nature which He has put in place.

The most impressive thing to me about this Gospel passage is the persistence of the man born blind in testifying to the way Christ has miraculously assisted him. Even in the face of the opposition of the Jewish leaders of his day, and his parents’ weakness before them, he consistently testifies to the truth of what happened. Perhaps in our own times, when far too many people secretly hate the truth and try to circumvent the facts or even substitute their own lies in pretense of these, this is the most valuable lesson for us to learn. We must never abandon what is true, no matter how convenient the temptation to replace it with falsehood.

Before I forget, I want to thank Mary Furlow, Janice and Don Aucoin, and all of the other Cathedral parishioners and friends who helped put together our St. Joseph Altar and meal this past week. It’s a real “labor of love,” but it is also a thing of both beauty and charity, as our eyes, our tastebuds, and our souls are nourished at this tribute to our great patron, St. Joseph.

And we continue to have a Holy Hour from 5 to 6 pm on Lenten Wednesdays here at the Cathedral. Exposition, adoration, and final benediction of the Blessed Sacrament continue to provide the perfect setting for quiet, private prayer and even confessions during this time: I hope you can discover this with us!

                        Sincerely in the Lord,

                        Father Paul


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