"Building up the Kingdom of God"

       National Catholic Apostolic Church

   in the United States 

(Non-Roman)

MESSAGE FROM THE PRIMATE

Lenten Message 2019

A Reflection on the Gospel of Matthew 6: 24-34


My Brothers and Sisters,

This is Christian hope: that the future is in God’s Hands. That is the message of Jesus in the Gospel about how futile it can be to worry. You know, worrying is a bit like a rocking chair – it gives you something to do, but it doesn’t get you anywhere.

Jesus starts off by saying, “No one can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” (Matt 6:24)

He is talking about our being so preoccupied with making money and placing our happiness in material things and in our ability to take care of ourselves that we fail to give God credit for his blessings.

And so, from this fixation on ourselves we then begin to worry about everything and we lose sight of our Christian hope: that the future is in God’s hands, not ours. Our worrying becomes destructive. Firstly, it creates an enormous gulf in our relationship with God because it presumes that God cannot be trusted. I’ve heard worry described as “practical atheism.” When we worry, we act as though God does not know or care about us. We live as if God does not exist. Thus, we become practical atheists. Can you imagine if your children worried about whether you were going to feed and clothe them? How bad would that make you feel as a parent? Yet, this is how we treat God when we worry.

Secondly, worrying does not improve our situation. 

As Jesus says, “Can any of you, by worrying, add one single moment to your life- span?” (Matt 6:27).

In fact, worrying can even harm us physically through loss of sleep and other maladies such as ulcers and heart attacks. It can also make us difficult to live with. So, after telling us not to worry, Jesus prescribes two practical ways in which we can control our worrying. 

He firstly says that we should set our “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be given you besides.” (Matt 6:33) That is, we should be concerned about God’s agenda and the agenda of others before our own. If God’s agenda and the agenda of our brothers and sisters is our top concern, then our worries tend to slide into the background. We are distracted in a positive way.

Secondly, Jesus says “Do not worry about tomorrow: tomorrow, will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.” (Matt 6:34) This is a call to live in the present by focusing only on each day. More importantly, it is a call to live in the presence of the Lord our God and our Savior, in prayer throughout our day.

May you have a holy Lenten Season.


+Michel Joseph, O.S.B.


                              TRAVELING SCHEDULE OF THE PRIMATE
                                                        2019 
                                                                                                                               Abril 12-23   Parroquia del Santísimo Sacramento en Long Beach, CA.                                              +Semana Santa
+Misa Crismal
+Confirmaciones 

May 29-June 7 Canada visiting family

Juillet 18-30
Vicariat Notre-Dame d'Haiti
-Messe Chrismale                                                                                                                                   
-Confirmations & Premières Communions
-Rencontre avec les Séminaristes et Candidats
-Bénédiction de la première pierre a St Thomas Apôtre 
-Etablissement officiel du Centre de Formation (Séminaire)
-Ordination Sacerdotal 

Noviembre 18-29 Visita Pastoral al Vicariato San Benito Abad - Argentina
-Confirmaciones
-Visita Parroquial
-Encuentro con el Clero, Seminaristas y Candidatos
-Celebraciones Patronal de Santa Catalina de Alejandria (Zona Norte, Buenos Aires)


Noviembre Visita Patorale Vicariato San Beneito Abad-Argentina

Décembre 15-30 
Visite Pastorale au Vicariat St. Jean-Marie Vianney-Cameroun(Yaoundé) en union avec le Vicariat de l'Immaculee Conception (Congo).
- Rite de Réception des nouveaux clercs
-Visite avec les Disciples d'Emmaüs
-Ordinations diaconal & presbytéral
-Messe Chrismale
-Bénédictions spéciales & Visites Paroissiale a Ste Philomène