Farewell to Deacon Jack

09-27-2021NewsFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

This past weekend we bid farewell to our beloved Deacon Jack Beware who is  leaving our parish community. We will miss Deacon Jack for his wonderful homilies, his presence at our daily Masses, his support to the parish staff and for all his commitment and support for our parish community. Deacon Jack will be moving from Arizona to be closer to his family in Chicago. Please join me in thanking Deacon Jack for his commitment, support, and personal sacrifices for our parish community. I pray that God will continue to bless him and his family with good health and protection.

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"For Whoever is Not Against Us is For Us"

09-26-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

The Gospel today is full of mesianic teachings on sundry issues. We are informed at the beginning of the Gospel that John, Jesus’ most beloved disciple, came to Jesus to report that while carrying out their apostolic mandate, the apostles found someone driving out demons in Jesus’ name and they stopped him because he (the exorcist) was not one of the apostles. John might have expected to be applauded by Jesus for ensuring a purist integrity of the apostolic college, but Jesus asked him not to prevent the man. The jealousy and intolerance exhibited by the apostles mirrors the attitude of Joshua, son of Nun, the designated successor of Moses. Joshua asked Moses to prevent Eldad and Medad from prophesying in the camp after failing to show up at the tent where the Holy Spirit rested on the seventy elders when Moses met with them. Their names were on the list of appointed elders, but for whatever reason, they did not make it to the tent, yet received the Holy Spirit and so prophesied in the camp, an indication that they were also enabled by God. Moses responded by rebuking the jealousy in Joshua and by affirming the universality of God’s Holy Spirit. Jesus’ response to John was consistent with the views of Moses.

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Welcome to the Supreme Knight of St. Peter Claver

09-20-2021NewsFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

I welcomed the Most Worthy Supreme Knight, Sir James K. Ellis of the Knights of St. Peter Claver to our St. Benedict Parish Community over the weekend. He was  accompanied by the Western States District Deputy Br. Bruce D. Sampson, the Ladies Auxiliaries and some members of the Knights. They joined us at our Saturday Vigil Mass on September 18.

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The First Shall be Last

09-19-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

The apostles of Jesus were very interesting characters. They were from various backgrounds and had different occupations prior to their call to become part of Jesus’ inner circle. Some were fishermen, some tax collectors, some zealots and the like; none of them had a refined scholarly background. Jesus called and chose them to be His closest companions and collaborators. For about three years, they lived with Him and learned at His feet. Jesus had a style of teaching the people in parables, but He cultivated the habit of interpreting and explaining these parables and metaphors with His apostles. He would later discard parables and speak “plainly” to them after Peter’s confession. According to St. Mark, the first thing He revealed to them was the imminent events of His Passion, death and resurrection. The reaction of the apostles to this teaching was unfortunately selfish and disappointingly insensitive. Imagine their Lord talking about leaving them through scandalous death on the cross and all the apostles could think was to argue who among them was the greatest and most likely to replace Jesus. By doing this, the apostles proved to be no different from the “wicked” whom the first reading tells us planned evil against the “just one” for daring to reproach them on account of their transgressions. The “wicked” sinned through vicious connivance, the apostles erred by neglect and insensitivity. Although they had no physical or emotional help to off er the Divine Redeemer, they could have at least shared a sober silence to transmit a solemn understanding of the Lord’s mood at the very least.

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Religious Education Programs Resume

09-13-2021NewsFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

We welcome back from the summer break the children and catechists into our Religious Education Program. Session begins this Sunday for the EPIC teens, and during the week for the elementary and middle school youth.  I thank our dedicated Catechists and Core Leaders who volunteer their time each week to serve our parish. I assure you of my prayers and support in your ministry.

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Who do You Say that I Am?

09-12-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

Towards the end of His mission on earth, Jesus saw the need to begin speaking “openly” or “plainly” to His disciples and no longer with the use of parables and metaphors. To be able to do this well, the Divine Redeemer decided to assess His apostle’s’ understanding of his person and mission. He asked them two questions. The first was: “Who do people say I am?” The apostles gave various answers. Some told Him that people thought He was John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others one of the prophets. Having gathered public opinion about Himself, Jesus asked the apostles, “But who do you say I am?” This time, only Simon Peter replied. Mark reports in today’s gospel that Peter answered, “You are the Christ.”

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Welcome to Our New Parishioners

09-07-2021NewsFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

This past weekend, we held a special welcoming event to meet and greet our new parishioners, especially those who joined the parish during the pandemic when we suspended our monthly event. I welcome and thank our new parishioners for choosing to join our lovely St. Benedict parish community. I invited everyone to join us in welcoming our new friends after the 9am and 11 am Masses at the main entrance of the Church. I thank Eamonn and Karen Ahearne, the Pastoral Council, members of the Event Ministry and all those who helped to plan the event.

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"Ephphata" (Be Opened!)

09-05-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

In today’s first reading, the prophet Isaiah preaches a message of hope to a despairing Israel facing a period of national misfortune. Israel, in Isaiah’s time, was being tossed from Assyrian domination to Babylonian captivity and exile. There were also various physical limitations and gross lack that made life quite difficult. The temptation to give up was palpable. It was at this time that the prophet Isaiah preached the imminent arrival of God who would redeem, rehabilitate and restore Israel to her pre-exile enviable state. The despairing exiles are urged to be strong and to fear not, for God is here to open the eyes of the blind, open the ears of the deaf, vindicate and save Israel. This prophecy speaks to the present situation of many in our world. There are too many people suffering with physical and spiritual privations. Despair for such brethren can seem a veritable option, but God is not just on the way; He is here to save and restore us if we let Him.

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