NOTICE: I am a practicing Catholic, active and in good-standing with my local parish, who professes faith and loyalty to the Church. This ministry - my "little work" - is strictly a personal expression of that faith and loyalty, and not an officially recognized ministry in the Diocese of Honolulu. ~ Peter

Saturday, April 2, 2016

First Saturday Parish Rosary at St. Anthony of Padua Church, 4/2/2016

Today, on the eve of Divine Mercy Sunday, the line into our parish's confessional was exceptionally long again.  Perhaps partly due to people trying to gain the Lord's promised indulgence for tomorrow's feast.  But for some reason, it seems to have been that way for a few months now... and, as I mentioned before, I've never seen our confessional like this in all the years I've been at my parish.  I like this recent development.  I view the upsurge as an indication that more people, at least in Kailua, are trying to make a fresh start in life - a life with God involved; that the Holy Spirit is powerfully working in the parish.

On a smaller scale, I know with certainty that the Holy Spirit was definitely present in our Day Chapel during our First Saturday Rosary for Peace.  I recognized and felt his presence.

You see... today had actually started off for me in a rather hectic manner - I had to work (on my day off), and in my rush to get ready this morning, I inadvertently forgot the two relics at home - pieces of clothing from both St. John Paul II (d. 2005) and the Blessed Mother - that I planned to display at the church.  By the time I realized it, when I was done at the office, it was already too late for me to return home to pick them up.  I was upset with myself for the oversight, but I knew it was all due to the work-related stress I've been dealing with lately.

So at the start of tonight's meeting I apologetically explained what happened to the group gathered in our Day Chapel.  There was a bit of disappointment among the people, but there was also understanding. I began the prayers still irritated with myself, but as the Holy Rosary steadily progressed, it was soon water under the bridge.  That familiar sense of the "divine" filled the Day Chapel and I was able to let go of the concerns that had burdened me throughout the past few weeks.  It was deep, deep PEACE; a sign of the Holy Spirit's presence among us... and a fruit of prayer.  I thanked the Lord and our Blessed Mother for unyoking me from the world's "worldliness" even if just for today.

... and I know I wasn't the only one who experienced God today.  In fact, after our meeting ended, two of our regular participants approached me - one did so to reassure me that it was OK that I forgot to bring relics this month and then he sincerely thanked me for my ministry work in the parish.  He looked unusually content as he headed out to Mass in the main church. The other person (a woman) had a more dramatic testimony - she showed me her forearm sprinkled with escarchas and told me they appeared during the Hail Holy Queen prayer.  She, too, left looking quite content; at peace.  God is good.

The next First Saturday Rosary for Peace will be offered for the world on Saturday, May 7th, beginning at 4:25 pm. All are welcome to participate.

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