Bishop Monforton 2013 Ordinary Time

2013 Ordinary Time Message


“Peace be with you,” he said again. “As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
Then he breathed on them and said: “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (John 20: 21-22)
            Jesus commences the New Age of the Church at the first Pentecost, for he lives in and acts through his Church. This Solemnity of Pentecost which we have just celebrated is the fiftieth day in Easter, marking the end of seven weeks following Passover. We as a believing community annually remember this New Age of the Church, which also is the new age of our human race. Pentecost as a signpost, though, is more than simply an ending, for it is a profound reminder of our beginning, namely to carry on the mission of salvation begun by Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
            “God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27). As we recommence Ordinary Time, may we allow these divinely-inspired and telling words to indicate to us as well as instruct us about the gravity of God’s handiwork when it comes down to the human race. How blessed we are as a human race that we are lovingly created by the Creator himself and he has intentionally crafted us in his own likeness. May this Ordinary Time ring true in our own lives that God has made him extraordinary.
            This past Easter season has reminded us that there is always hope. From north to south and east to west in our beloved Diocese of Steubenville we are reminded of the challenges before us, economically as well as socially, but none of this is grounds to despair. As fellow believers, we are grounded in the belief that Jesus created all things new in his Passion, Death and Resurrection and we are not bystanders but happen to be directly involved in salvation history. How fortunate we are to have such a loving God who is personally attentive to you and me as well as to our community. 
This spring, at this time as the school year comes to a close for many of our fellow brothers and sisters after we participate in the Baccalaureate and Commencement exercises, may we live our lives embracing the truth that through the Easter Resurrection Jesus provides us a new beginning, a beginning full of hope. May God bless you this Ordinary Time.