Bishop Noonan reflects on Our Catholic Appeal and the ministries it supports

Father Ivan Olmo, Parochial Administrator St. Mary’s Parish in Rockledge receives the Eucharistic bread from 96 years young Mary Witte at the Mass celebrating the parish’s 100th anniversary October 13. Bishop John Noonan, seen looking on presided at the event. (KATHERINE DEANE | COURTESY)

This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel.
Mark 1:15

 

My Sisters and Brothers in Christ:

We live in God’s time of fulfillment. We are called to remain vigilant; to make holy these days as we attend to the kingdom of God across the earth.  During this Jubilee Year of the 50th Anniversary of the Diocese of Orlando, we recommit ourselves to the Eucharist as the source and summit of our Christian life.  We repair our relationship with others that we might set right our focus on God and ultimately yield to Christ’s summons to be Eucharist so we are as Christ to each other.

Participation in the Eucharist is paramount to our vigilance:  our living through, with and in Christ.  The food of Christ’s body on the tree of the cross brings forth everlasting life.  Nourished with this food, we are members of the body of Christ invited to care for each other from conception to natural death.

The Eucharist is the bond of love making known the presence of God in our midst, a God who continues to suffer in our sisters and brothers who are hungry, thirsty, sick and imprisoned.  We are called, together with Jesus, to be bread broken for the life of the world.

Through the ministries supported by Our Catholic Appeal, you make known the kingdom of God because these ministries help each one of you to live your faith, to share your belief in the gospel. From honoring the dignity of each life; to teaching people of all ages about our faith; to sharing our resources with those who are alone or in need; the ministries supported by Our Catholic Appeal are your offering to God.

Pope Francis said, “The Eucharist communicates the Lord’s love for us: a love so great that it nourishes us with Himself; a freely given love, always available to every person who hungers and needs to regenerate his own strength. To live the experience of faith means to allow oneself to be nourished by the Lord and to build one’s own existence not with material goods but with the reality that does not perish: the gifts of God, His Word and His Body.”

Thank you for your extraordinary response to my special appeal each year.  I ask you to continue to bring forth the gifts of God through an offering for Our Catholic Appeal, for our ministries, our people, our future.  When your gift is truly based on love, the amount, no matter the size, will yield the gifts of God for all the people. May God’s time of fulfillment be known by our living belief in the Gospel.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend John Noonan
Bishop of Orlando

February 1, 2018