A message from our Pastor at Merciful Redeemer Parish,
Dear Parents, Staff and Students of St Aloysius Gonzaga,
I hope and pray that each of you had a pleasant and restful summer break. As I write, we are currently enjoying the best weather we’ve had all summer… and it’s now Fall!
This is my first September in Merciful Redeemer Parish, and I wish to express to you my joy at being your pastor of this terrific parish and family of schools. I take this opportunity to introduce to you our new Associate Pastor, Fr Ryan Alemao, who was ordained at St Michael’s Cathedral on 13 May of this year. He is a most welcome addition to our parish, and he, along with Marc Puigmarti (our parish Youth Ministry Coordinator) and myself, will be making regular visits to our schools to meet with students and staff, sharing with them the Gospel and the beauty of our Catholic Faith.
This week, we are celebrating the school Masses for the opening of the new Academic Year. It is appropriate and necessary to begin the year in the context of Faith – the love of God, which is signified and strengthened in the Sacrament of the Eucharist, is a prerequisite for our true and proper love of neighbor. Together – love of God and love of neighbor – are at the heart of our holy Catholic Faith, of which our school communities are an important component.
Among the many highlights of our year at the parish, we include the celebration of Masses and retreats for the students of Gonzaga. It is our duty and our privilege to help you parents of these young men and women of our parish high school, in your role as the primary educators of your children in the faith. Experience shows that even the best teachers and best priests and best parishes can have only a limited impact on the growth and depth of a child’s spiritual life, if the teachers’ and priests’ efforts are not first experienced and subsequently mirrored at home by Moms and Dads. Our celebration of Sunday Mass is the most important part of what we do, as Catholics, to love God and love our neighbor; it is also rather the bare minimum: if we are not doing that much – giving God priority at least that one hour a week as a family and as a community – then the rest loses its meaning and vigor rather quickly. And so I encourage each of you to make Sunday Mass a regular and important part of your weekend; our parish community is here to serve you and to make you feel at home and to help you to know and love the Lord, and to hand that on to your children.
I am pleased to assure you and all your loved ones of a remembrance in Fr Ryan’s and my prayers. Remember us also in yours.
God bless and be well,
Msgr Owen Keenan
Merciful Redeemer Parish