On behalf of myself and our deacons: Jim Koger and Mike Lewis.
Our principal: Kaci Monaghan
Early childhood director: Lily Winkeljohn
Finance Director & Liturgist: RobinLamb
Religious Education Director: Mindy Lehman
Office Administrator: Lisa Angotti –
I wish all of you a happy and holy Easter! We are glad you chose to spend part of your day with us here at St. Patrick – and probably cannot say this enough: BUT YOUR ARE MISSED!
Easter is certainly a day for celebrating HOPE—and so we HOPE for the day when we can all be together, again: IN PERSON!
Until then, stay safe, stay well, stay holy – and stay sane!!
Yes, it has been a stressful time for us all – so I thought today would be a good day to have just a little fun with the very important celebration we have today – by reading a story:
Easter Bunny’s Amazing Day!
By Carol Benoist & Cathy Gilmore
Illustrated by Jonathan Sundy
Hi! I’m the Easter Bunny. But I wasn’t always the Easter Bunny. . .
Can I tell you my story?
Long ago, when I was just a little bunny, I lived with my mama, my papa, and my brothers and sisters. . . LOTS of brothers and sisters!
We lived in a really beautiful garden, and we had plenty of yummy grass to eat.
I had young animal friends to play with too. My best friend was a mouse. He was really good at hide and go seek. I was just really good at. . .hiding.
You see, I had a problem. I was afraid. . .
Of nearly everything, nearly all the time. I was afraid of the DARK. I was afraid of THUNDER. LIGHTNING. SHADOWS. CROWDS. And especially HORSES.
One time, I had to dart out from under a horse’s pounding hoof when a group of riders came galloping through the garden.
I was so scared. . . I shivered, and I could hardly eat for a week.
The only thing scarier than horses was the dark and gloomy CAVE at the corner of the garden.
I could never go in it.
One time, everything I was afraid of happened in the same day.
It started with riders on horses yelling at a crowd of people going past the garden.
Later on, it drew Dark. . . in the middle of the day!
Then there was a tremendous Storm with Thunder and Lightning.
Even the ground shook under me.
I didn’t know where to go. I had to hide somewhere, so I ran. . . right into the cave!
I cowered in the corner for a long. . . long time.
Later the storm ended, and a group of people came into the cave holding torches.
They brought a man wrapped in white cloths and laid him on a flat piece of rock.
Then they all went out.
Before I could move, they rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the cave, and I was stuck inside. . . IN THE DARK!
I was in there for three days with the man wrapped in the white cloth.
There was something about him.
At least I wasn’t alone.
Then, the most amazing thing happened.
The cave filled with a light so bright I could barely see.
The man got up.
The light was coming from him. He glowed.
There was a sound of air swoosshhing into the cave like the room was taking a deep breath of the freshest air in the whole world.
As the air whooshed back out, the stone rolled away and the cave was open again!
Light streamed in and out.
I inched forward a little bit. The man saw me. I wanted to run.
He stooped down and held out his hand and smiled at me.
When I saw his eyes, I didn’t want to run away anymore.
With my front paws, I stepped up onto his warm fingers and sniffed.
His touch made me feel warm inside.
He scooped me up, held me close to his heart, and took me outside.
He stroked my fur with gentle hands and said,
“Don’t be afraid, Little Bunny. I am with you.”
Hearing his voice. . . I knew I would never be afraid again.
The special day when the man who glowed came out of the dark is called Easter.
They call me the Easter Bunny because that was the amazing day He took all my fears away.
Thank you, Jesus, for Easter, and for everything.
So especially in this dark time of pandemic – in this time of lost jobs, lost classrooms, lost freedom of movement and interaction – and whatever personal forms of darkness we are experiencing –
We need to remember the lesson of the Easter Bunny who once was afraid of the dark, thunder, lightning, shadows, and crowds –
JESUS took all those fears away – and JESUS will take away our fears, too.
So that ALL our days can be AMZAING DAYS!
And so we say in Spanish: Felices Pascuas.
In Italian: Buona Pasqua.
In French: Joyeuses Paques.
And in Vietnamese: Chuc Mung.
HAPPY EASTER! Everyone – may God bless you today and take away all our fears. AMEN!
In a 1958 play by Archibald Macleish – which is a modern day re-telling of the story of the Biblical figure Job --- Job is broken by all the terrible things that have happened in his life.
Turning to his wife, Sarah, for some comfort and advice when he admits it is just “too dark to see” – Sarah turns, pulls Job’s head down between her hands, kisses him --- and says:
“If it is too dark to see ---- then you must blow on the coal of your heart, my darling.
For the candles in churches go out – and even the sun sets and the sky grows dark.
But blow on the coal of your heart – and we won’t lose the light – and we will see by and by.”
Throughout this Lenten season we have been talking about light and darkness. We have admitted that many of us have been in a dark tunnel because of the personal pains and hurts and disappointments we carry from our own past – and carry from the collective past of this faith community of St. Patrick.
It’s time for us all to put the past behind, to come out of the dark tunnel and into the bright light of Jesus Christ. . .
We are almost there – but this week still holds a lot of darkness, although we have glimmers of light.
As we heard at the beginning of this Mass – there is the light of the crowd shouting:
“Hosanna to the Son of David: blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest.”
But --- then there is the darkness of the crowds in Pilate’s courtyard we heard in the Passion, who shout: “Give us Barabbas”– And then Pilate asks them: “and what shall I do with Jesus called the Christ”?” And they shout: “Crucify him!”
Near the end of today’s Passion Reading – we had the light of the faith of the centurion at the cross saying: “truly this was the son of God” ---- and those who knew Jesus the best in his life, the apostles, hiding in the darkness of fear-- somewhere far from the cross.
In Wednesday’s Gospel we will hear of the darkness of the hands of Judas as he reaches them out to receive 30 pieces of silver to betray Jesus.
And on Holy Thursday we will see the light of the serving hands of Jesus washing the feet of his disciples as he says: “what you have seen me do – you must do for one another.”
But in Wednesday’s Gospel hear of the darkness of the hands of Judas as he reaches them out to receive 30 pieces of silver to betray Jesus.
As we read the Passion of John on Good Friday, we will hear of the light of fidelity of three Mary’s standing at the foot of the cross with Jesus’ beloved disciple – and the darkness of shame as Peter denies knowing Jesus three times.
We have the light of discipleship when Joseph of Arimathea asks Pilate for the body of Jesus to bury --- and the darkness of NOT ONE of the apostles there to help.
At the end of the Passion on Good Friday – we have Jesus placed in the darkness of the tomb where he will stay until the cries of “Christ our Light” of the Easter Vigil announces that nothing is impossible with God: God can conquer sin and God can even conquer death itself.
And throughout this week --- where do we stand?
Completely --- and comfortably --in the dark?
Or in the dark blowing on the coals of our hearts with the hope of the light to come?
Or do we boldly stand in the light – cursing the darkness?
Perhaps there are two quotes that can keep us focused during this coming Week we call Holy:
First, to remember that it is said the darkest hour of night – is just before the dawn.
And second: when the world around you is cast into darkness --- choose to be the light!