Inclusive Vision and Mission of the Church

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.” (Jn 3:16)

The Christmas season that just ended and Solemnity of the Epiphany we celebrated last Sunday all underline an important message: the inclusive vision of God’s salvation, a constant aspect of Jesus’ teaching and life style. Jesus deliberately included tax collectors, sinners, the poor, the marginalized and gentiles. One is reminded of Luke’s gospel account of the Good Samaritan. The Jewish religious leaders (a priest and a Levite) avoid caring for the man who fell in the hands of robbers, white it was the Samaritan who cared for the unfortunate Jewish traveler. Jews looked down on Samaritans and avoided passing through Samaritan territory. Yet Jesus did not hesitate to pass through Samaria, and indeed met the Samaritan woman at a well and, converted her and her whole village.

The solemnity of the Epiphany and the teaching of Jesus help us to move beyond our prejudices and embrace the inclusive vision of God’s salvation. In practical terms it challenges us to realize that there is a place for each and every one of us in this parish; there is enough space for all ministries even as we struggle with the limited space needs. The inclusive nature of the Church and thus of our parish challenges us to move together as one parish committed to one inclusive vision and mission of our parish community. Our focus at the moment is the One Community Center. Next Saturday we will have our town hall meeting and I encourage all parishioners to attend so that you may have a complete update of where we are and the way forward. I wish to all parishioners who have made their pledge to OCC capital campaign. If you have not yet made your commitment please do so as we do need keep going. Where exactly are we on the OCC? Come and be informed.

God bless you all.

Monsignor John S. Mbinda