My dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
Receive God’s Blessing!
Our God is a God who not only saves but also one who blesses. Through blessing, God is directly and concretely involved in the existence of every creature. It is God’s blessing that provides elements of growth from generation to generation. It is God’s blessing that allows a child to grow into a man or woman. It is God’s blessing that makes what seems to be impossible, possible.
Through the Holy Book of Numbers, God asks priests to bless His people with the following words: “May the Lord bless you and guard you; may the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; may the Lord look kindly on you and give you peace” (Nm 6:22-26 REV). These holy words reassure us of three gifts that are continually offered to us. The first is the gift of God’s constant presence. To meet God face to face means to be aware of the truth that He is always with us. His face is turned towards us and as to Moses, and so many others after him, we too can experience His presence and be transformed by it. The second gift is that God wants to make His face shine on us. This means, He wants to look at us with kindness, gentleness, goodness, and love that is full of forgiveness. He looks in this way at every man and woman not only for a moment or a day but always and through all eternity. No life experience can compare to the gift of God’s face shining on us. It allows us to see clearly our place in the world and the role we play in God’s plan. It is the greatest experience we can have here on earth. In this experience a third gift is given to us, namely, a peace that penetrates and takes over our entire life.
A Blessing in God’s gift and as such it must be received. As created in the image of God, in the image of someone with a face, we too have our own distinguished face. What makes us special creatures in the universe is our ability to meet with God face to face, that is, to receive and embrace His overwhelming goodness and love. However, as sinners, however, we are afraid to look straight at the loving face of God. To help us overcome our fear, God became man so that forevermore we should be able to see His face by looking at the faces of others. There is an exact correlation between our kindness towards others and a deeper understanding of God’s kindness towards us. The wider we are able to open our hearts in order to look kindly on others, the clearer we are able to see the smiling and shining face of God filled with love for us. The more enthusiastically (Gk. enthousiasmos—inspired by God) we look on others, the more evidence we provide that we are in God’s presence and are the instruments of His love.
In the spirit of this special blessing, my wish is that you will never turn your back on God; that you may have courage to look straight into God’s eyes and receive His love. I wish that you and I would help God to bring His peace and love to others by looking kindly on them with a smiling face every day of this year, and every year to follow.
With God's Blessing,
Rev. Msgr. Frank Kurzaj, Pastor
Our Mission: to spread the good news of Jesus Christ to all God’s people by word and action.