Dear Parishioners and friends,
The Easter story does not end with Mary in grief. It tells us of her encounter with the Risen Lord who calls out her name and sends her out on a mission of proclaiming to others the Good news of the Resurrection. Perhaps we too need to hear our names called and our personal relationship with the Lord reaffirmed. In the midst of our despair and uncertainty, we need to hear the affirmation of our Lord with crystal clarity: “Be not afraid”.
Be not afraid to die to that which is not worthy of Christ, that which is like the old wineskins unable to contain the new wine God is pouring. The church must constantly pattern itself on the death and resurrection of Christ.
As we mourn the death of the old way of being church, we are not without hope. The risen Christ shows us the way forward. He also empowers us to be agents of change and partners with Him to further God’s reign.
God’s ways often involve the pain of letting go, of beginning again, of going forward with hope and trust.
Let us endeavour to live the rhythm of Christ dying and rising in the church and in all facets of our lives. There we can be certain that the loving God will bring about renewal and transformation as He brought to Jesus Christ to life from the dead.
Thank you to all who assisted in preparing and celebrating for the Holy Week and Easter liturgies, especially the Parish Staff who continue to make a wonderful contribution to serving our community, as do many generous and committed volunteers in our thriving parish at all levels, ages and stages. Gratitude goes especially at this time to those who helped make the Easter celebrations more life-giving, and all who participated: the Parish Council, Altar Servers, Carpenter’s Club, Environment Helpers (both outside and inside the Church), Music Ministry, Ushers, Carparking Attendants, Liturgical Ministers, Counters, Youth Ministry, RCIA Team, those who donated chocolates for the community, people working behind the scenes and all who have been involved. We say a heartfelt thank you to all: we couldn’t manage without you. We are always looking for new ideas to keep our liturgies vibrant, meaningful, and reaching out to all. And may all our parishioners at St James persevere with eyes that love so that they may experience the many resurrection moments in their lives. I wish you and your families the peace and mercy of the Risen Lord this Easter.
May the grace of the Easter season fill your hearts with new faith in God, whose plans for us are, as the prophet Jeremiah said, peace and not disaster.
Yours in the Risen Lord,