Over the years, my image of Jesus has changed greatly. There was never a question of whether I believed; instead, it was more a question of who Jesus is to me, and where I might find him. Is he the great and glorious God, or my companion in life, or the poor person in the street, or…? In this weekend’s gospel, Jesus asks his disciples who they say he is. Even when Peter recognized him as the Messiah, he was putting his own definition to that, as we see next Sunday, when Jesus calls Peter “Satan” for saying he couldn’t suffer.
During our parish celebrations for the Feast of the Assumption, I encountered Jesus in many ways: The people on the Sestercentennial committee who organized our celebrations to perfection, the many others who volunteered their time and energy, and the many, many people who came out to celebrate are all manifestations of Jesus to me. It is the Christ who allows me to celebrate, the Christ who works so hard for me, and the Christ who accompanies and affirms me. It is such a blessing and a privilege to me to be a part of Assumption parish, especially during this, our 250th year of presence to the people of this area.
I thank all of you who participated in any way in our celebrations revolving around our Patronal Feast of the Assumption, and invite you all to be a part of our next celebration, that of honouring Holy Name of Mary parish. In true Holy Name tradition, we will have Eucharist and then a pot luck dinner, where we can be present to each other, and offer our best to those of our parish community.
Further enhancing the life of our community, I am pleased to announce that we have hired two Lay Ecclesial Ministers, who will begin their work on September 5: Jean Beneteau, from St. John the Baptist parish in Amherstburg, comes to us with a wealth of education and pastoral experience at both the parish and the diocesan levels, and is our new full-time Pastoral Minister. Melissa Pacitti-Fallone is an Assumption parishioner with much education and volunteer experience, and is our new part-time Coordinator of Youth Ministry. We are truly blessed to have these two capable people as part of the Pastoral Team. Soon we will be installing them formally at all the Masses. I look forward to working with them, and to experiencing the gifts they bring to the parish, and invite your prayer for them. Welcome, Jean and Melissa!