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March 21, 2020


Dear brothers and sisters,


“Come, let us return to the LORD, it is he who has rent, but he will heal us; he has struck us, but he will bind our wounds” (Hos 6:1).

I was very moved by these words from the first reading as I offered Mass this morning. While the prophet recognizes the human role in the spread of evil, he above all expresses the inspired hope that the Lord will always show mercy, and the greatest prayer on our lips these days is that God will heal us and bind our wounds.

I want you to know how much you are all in my thoughts every day: as I offer Mass each morning, as I pray the hours of the Divine Office, as I recite the Rosary and visit Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. Your safety, patient endurance—and good humor!—are uppermost in my mind. I see your faces before me as I celebrate Mass each morning and entrust your intentions to the Lord. In God’s good time we will be gathered again around his altar.

Although some parishes offer a live stream or YouTube video of their Masses, we are not set up for that and, given the governor’s stay-at-home order, it will not be possible to set up such a system in the short-term future. In the meantime, you have multiple options each day to participate spiritually in Mass:


As our world and familiar way of life seem so deeply changed, it is good to remember the wise words of St. Teresa of Avila: “Let nothing disturb you; let nothing frighten you; all things are passing; God never changes.” So, pray for those afflicted with this virus, for those who care for them, for those who are working towards a vaccine and a cure, and for those who are lonely, troubled, or afraid. This, too, shall pass. God alone is eternal. 

Let me leave you with the prayer I offered for all of you at the end of Mass last week:

Bestow upon your servants, Lord, abundance of grace and protection; grant health of mind and body; grant fullness of fraternal charity, and make them always devoted to you. Through Christ our Lord. 

Our Lady, Health of the Sick, pray us!

Saint Patrick, pray for us!

Saint Roch, pray for us!

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