Welcome to Notre Dame Church
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This weekend at all the Masses I am sharing with you by fledgling vision for Notre Dame Parish. But I sense I need to speak about something that is at the foundation of my presence, teaching, and pastoral service to the parish and its many parishioners, namely, how the church calls us to relate to one another—pastor and parishioner.
An almost completely neglected teaching of the scriptures and the church is this: the laity—all who are not ordained priests or deacons—in virtue of their baptism, are priests. Yes! Each and every one of you is a priest. I am not the only priest at Notre Dame Parish. In your baptism Christ consecrated you a priest, his priest; he made you to share in his priesthood. The scriptures even speak of you as “a kingdom, priests for his God and Father” (Rev. 1:6). Furthermore, St. Paul taught that we are to “bow to one another out of reference for Christ” (Eph. 5:21). For Christ’s sake we—baptized priests and priests ordained—bow to one another. Vatican II put it this way: “...the common priesthood of the faithful and the ministerial or hierarchical priesthood are nonetheless interrelated. Each of them in its own special way is a participation in the one priesthood of Christ” (LG 10).
That we share in the priesthood of Christ and that we are to bow to one another out of reference for him is at the basis of the church’s call for the laity to assume greater leadership in the parish communities, especially through pastoral councils. I have written of them before, but it bears repeating.
The bible teaches us that “where there is no vision the people become demoralized” (Prov. 29:18). In a nutshell, this is the primary role and responsibility of the pastoral council, to counsel me in understanding and implementing the Holy Spirit’s vision for Notre Dame Parish. The council does so especially through “a realistic and comprehensive reading of the 'signs of the times' in order to develop a persuasive presentation of the Catholic faith and prepare young people especially to dialogue with their contemporaries about the Christian message and its relevance to the building of a more just, humane and peaceful world” (St. John Paul II; 5/28/2004). For his part, Pope Francis teaches that “[t]he parish is not an outdated institution…[I]f the parish proves capable of self-renewal and constant adaptivity, it continues to be ‘the Church living in the midst of the homes of her sons and daughter’” (The Joy of the Gospel, 28). The pastoral council is the vehicle through which the parish self-renews and constantly adapts.
I acknowledge that self-renewal and constantly adapting are difficult. No one likes change. But change—self renewal and adapting—is God’s will for us, and that constantly, if we are to live out our baptism and our priesthood; if we seriously seek the renewal of our families and parish; if we are to present the faith to our young people more persuasively, for the sake of the whole world.
Don't forget to pick up some grocery gift cards for the leading grocery stores. They make great gifts too. You can purchase yours after all the Masses.
*The current bulletin can be found under the "Weekly Bulletins" menu link above, plus notice all our advertisers on the back that help support the bulletin.
|8:00 am||8:00 am||7:00 am||Saturday 8:30 - 10:30 am
|4:00 pm||9:00 am|
5100 W. Evans
Denver, CO 80219
2190 S. Sheridan Blvd.
Denver, CO 80219
Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.
1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
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