Pastor’s Weekly Message 5-1-22

Dear Friend of Carmel Mission,
In the Gospel today we see a beautiful example of our Savior lovingly giving his friend Peter something he desperately needs, healing. Peter’s love for Jesus has not diminished in any way since His Death and Resurrection. If anything, the wild exuberance with which Peter jumps in the water to be close to his Lord as quickly as possible is evidence of his profound love. But Peter is wounded by his betrayal of Jesus at the time of His Passion. He denied three times that he even knew Jesus. Not because he did not love Him but because he was afraid. Peter wanted to be someone who was ready to die with Jesus, but when the moment came, his courage failed him.
Jesus knew that this would be the case, and it did not change how Jesus felt about Peter. Jesus saw in Peter the pastoral zeal that would allow him to be the first leader of His Church on earth. But Peter’s denial had changed how Peter felt about himself, and, out of love, Jesus offers him a chance for healing. Peter denied Jesus three times, and Jesus offers him an opportunity to profess his love three times. Jesus also tells him how he can best express that love, by caring for Jesus’ flock. Out of a situation of shame and fear, Jesus brings healing, peace and purpose.
I am sure you can think of a time in your life when the answer to your prayer was not what you expected, or perhaps even what you wanted, I know that I can. But, with the benefit of hindsight, perhaps it was exactly what you needed? Peter was frustrated, even distressed that Jesus kept asking him, “do you love me?” as if He did not already know. But just as he had denied Jesus three times, Peter had to affirm his love three times as well. Jesus knew what he needed to heal and move on. God knows, better than us, what we need to heal, to experience peace, to find purpose. Part of our faith is trusting in God’s answers to our prayers.
I wish you and your loved ones Easter blessings of good health and great joy. As war continues to rage in our wounded world, please join me in praying for peace and healing,

Fr. Paul

Please take a moment to read our Carmel Mission Weekly Bulletin.

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