We are not alone for God is with Us!

Dear brothers & sisters in Jesus,
Every time we celebrate Christmas, it makes us wonder at the mystery of the Incarnation.
God is the Word, the Word that created the whole universe. At “Christmas” this powerful God, Lord of the universe, God of the Exodus becomes like one of us. He really becomes “flesh”,
total weakness, limited, mortal, an element so human that he cannot be poorer and comes
to dwell among us.

What does Incarnation, therefore, mean to tell us then?
It tell us that we are no longer alone. Our flesh is no longer left to itself: someone takes
care of it, makes himself a neighbour, so equal to us as to make us totally equal to him. Therefore, let us ask him, particularly at Christmas, to help us live our weaknesses and to be able to overcome them little by little; to help us to alleviate the loneliness of so many elderly people, who today might only hear “Merry Christmas” from the television announcer. Let us ask him
to bring about healing to the sick, especially afflicted by Corona virus; let us ask him so that
our children may grow in the knowledge of God & our young people in wisdom and
not to bar the doors of their hearts to those who are different from them/us. Let us ask him
to help us all to forgive and forget the evil received. Finally, let us ask him to help us
to understand that our “flesh”, our weakness, is not an obstacle to salvation, but it is the way
to get there, because today, that road, Jesus has reopened it to us.
Let us thank Jesus who has become like us to be with us, because he loves us.
This is why we are not alone in love. God is with us. He is Emmanuel.

At this point I would like to thank ALL of YOU for being great parishioners of St Dominic Savio. I express my sense of gratitude to all of you – for your prayers, witness, and support.
Let me thank, in particular, Deacon Steven Defer for the role he plays in the parish ministry and Carolyn, the only office staff now, for her hard work. Likewise, I owe much to the PPC, CWL, CFC, Marian Group, Choir Groups, Helpers, Volunteers Group, particularly those help us
these days so that we may stay safe, pray & worship better. May the Lord bless YOU ALL
at Christmas and keep you under his wings of love & protection now & always.
Happy Christmas and Happy New Year!
Fr Saga

Faith Formation – Saturday Nights

Faith Formation is starting back up this Saturday from 6-7pm (right after 5pm Mass). Tomorrow Deacon Stephen delves into the Gospel of Mark. Hope you can make it!

As before we will be posting his talk on our website, youtube and Facebook for those who want to attend in Spirit!

An Advent Message & Parish update from Father Saga

Dear Parishioner,
Greetings to you and to your family!
We have just begun the Advent season which helps prepare ourselves to celebrate worthily the Birth of Jesus our Lord and Saviour.
In this time it sounds opportune that I share with you some information on a few parish activities.
St.DominicSavio Parishioner Letter from Father Saga

To this end, I am posting this letter which briefs about some of our activities, initiatives and also requesting your continuous support to the Parish. May the Divine Child Jesus, bring you good health and happiness at Christmas and in the New Year.
God bless!
Fr Saga.

Will we hear from Jesus The King: “Come, you that are blessed by My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you???”

As the Liturgical Year-A comes to a conclusion, the Word of God of this Sunday of the Solemnity of Christ, The King of the Universe, brings us one of the most consoling expressions found in Ezekiel: “I Myself will search for My sheep”. Yes, Jesus will seek His sheep out, will rescue those who are scattered in clouds and thick darkness, will bind up the injured, will strengthen the weak, will make them lie down to rest. The Lord God, our Shepherd-King, thus, promises to save us. What an encouraging expression!

But then our Shepherd-King also warns that He will judge between one sheep & another, between rams & goats. This clearly reminds us of the two types of Judgements which will be awaiting us all.

The first one – the Particular Judgement – occurs when we cross the threshold of this temporary life into the endless corridors of eternity. At that moment the last opportunity to make of ourselves what we want to be forever has passed. We stand before God with our entire history, of merits as well as failures. And there we are judged by the Shepherd-King of the Universe. This has been pretty well expressed by a couple of Councils, for example, by that of Florence in 1445 and earlier by that of Lyons in 1274.

The second one – the General Judgement (as depicted by Michelangelo on vault of the Sistine Chapel in Vatican), occurs within the context of the Resurrection of the Dead at the end of time. The Sacred Scripture revels this Judgement clearly. In fact, today’s Gospel passage is an example. Besides, belief in the General Judgement is part of the Creed we recite at Sunday Mass.

However, we need to stress that the relationship between these Judgements is especially mysterious. But we know in faith that judgment (mine/yours) will be individual/personal as well as cosmic/universal. To minimize the importance of the particular judgment would be to minimize each person’s individual responsibility before God. Likewise, to play down the general judgement would be to downplay one’s responsibility to find Christ in his/her neighbour and all humankind – a duty dramatically highlighted in today’s Gospel.

Dear brethren, let us not get unnecessarily worried about what is going to happen to us. Instead let us know for sure that Jesus as The King is clearly coming to us in every person in need. He has 6 needs: 3 are external (food, water, and clothing) and 3 are internal (loneliness, illness, and imprisonment). The needy are our own family, our parish community, the neighbour next door, children, youth, widowed, separated & divorced, new immigrants, those without jobs, those addicted, unborn babies, the sick & handicapped & the elderly, and so on. All that Jesus The King wants from us is that we see in the needy persons Him/Jesus and serve Him/Jesus in them. If we do this, then, there is nothing to be afraid of, for Jesus The King will say to us: “Come, you that are blessed by My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you since the beginning”. So shall it be!

Happy Feast of Christ The King!
Fr Saga (Pastor).

What matters is a person’s spirit

Dear Brethren,

We are celebrating the last ordinary Sunday of the liturgical year A, before we conclude it with the feast of Christ the King and begin a new liturgical year (B) that ushers in the Advent season. On this Sunday the liturgy of the Word is centered on the theme of using one’s God-given talents, not only for one’s wellbeing, but that of the whole community to which one belongs. This is possible only when we live now with an eye toward our final goal which is the possession of God in heaven.
The first reading tellingly describes the same thought in the following manner (although it is directed primarily to women and expressed in a woman’s idiom), when it describes the ideal woman within the family, as well as the joy with which she is able to fill her home.

Her main qualities are:
• as a wife, she is capable, trusted by her husband, does him good and not harm all her life, and works with her hands;
• as a woman with talent, she buys a field and plants a vineyard. She is strong, and her lamp does not go out at night;
• as a caring person, she opens her hand to help the poor and reaches out to the needy. She shares her wisdom and is kind;
• as a mother, her children rise early and call her happy. Her husband praises her for her excellence;
• as a woman she reverences the Lord, and shares what God has shared with her.

All in all, it is a celebrated “valiant wife” passage from Proverbs, wherein we are reminded that physical beauty and charm, as noble as they may be, are nonetheless passing: what endures is spiritual attractiveness. For men, this passage could meaningfully be translated into terms of physical strength or vigorous youth – both of these fade away as age progresses and what remains forever is strength and vigour of soul. Reference to a woman’s physical beauty, or to a man’s strength or vigour, also prompts some reflection on physical inequalities. Some people seem to be gifted less than others in this world’s attributes, physical as well as psychological and intellectual. What matters, again, is a person’s spirit. What will remain is a person’s beauty and strength of soul. And beauty and strength of soul necessarily reflect one’s priorities in this brief pilgrimage to our only real and everlasting homeland which is heaven.

How do we achieve beauty and strength of soul so that we will be recognised by Jesus our Judge & Lord at his Second coming? Well, it is in today’s Gospel passage. As the Gospel reminds us, let us live here & now making the most of the talents God has given us for his greater honour & glory and contribute to the life of the Community and give witness to the Gospel before the world.

Dear brethren, let us always remember: simply for trying to do all this, we are assured of being rewarded a hundredfold. So shall it be!
Have a wonderful week-end!

Fr Saga.