Dear Friend of Carmel Mission,
The Gospel today invokes one of the most beloved images of our Savior, Jesus Christ, that of the Good Shepherd. Throughout the centuries, this depiction of Christ, as the loving shepherd caring for His flock, has inspired art and music and touched the imaginations of countless believers. It is comforting to imagine ourselves as one of the sheep, happily grazing in the sun, safe from predators and certain that if we should happen to lose our way, our Shepherd will go to every length to recover and protect us.
It is fitting that today, Good Shepherd Sunday, is also the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. On this day we pray that more people may hear, and have the opportunity to answer, the call to the priesthood and consecrated life. I invite you to join me in praying for our seminarians, and for all those who are discerning God’s call in their lives.
When I reflect on my own call to the priesthood, and where it has led me in over forty years of service to God’s people, I am honored and humbled to consider that I follow in a direct line from our founder and first pastor, St. Junipero. St. Junipero answered God’s call to service and evangelization, and worked tirelessly to be a good shepherd to the communities he helped to found, especially our own community of Carmel Mission. In the 250 years that followed, each pastor of Carmel Mission has done his best to carry on St. Junípero’s legacy, and be a good shepherd to God’s people. As we look to the future during our 250th anniversary year, St. Junipero’s example never fails to inspire me to work harder, to always move forward, with the charge that has been the greatest honor, and the greatest challenge, of my life.
I sincerely ask that you pray for your shepherds this week, for me and for Fr. Rodrigo, for all the priests who have touched your lives and cared for our beautiful spiritual home of Carmel Mission.
I wish you and your loved ones continued Easter blessings of good health, renewed hope and great peace,
Please take a moment to read our Carmel Mission Weekly Bulletin.