To All Parishioners of St. Peter’s Parish:

 

As we reopen the church for public celebration of Mass on 5/29/2020, the weekend mass times are scheduled as follows:

St. Helena’s in Alpine: Saturday 4:00 PM (English Language Service)

St Peter’s in Springerville: Sunday 9:00 AM (English Language Service)

St. Peter’s in Springerville: Sunday 11:00 AM (Bilingual Spanish /English Service)

Confessions: Sunday 8:00 AM-9:00 AM prior to Mass

 

All parishioners are encouraged to spread attendance over these mass times and location:

This will avoid excess numbers at any given mass. As we joyfully resume services, we continue to strive to care for one another by observing recommendations that allow for the safety of the vulnerable and observe proper social distancing.

 

Please remember if you are ILL OR AT RISK PLEASE STAY AT HOME. As Bishop Wall reminds us in his letter of 5/23/2020, “In order to stay safe, it’s important to err on the side of caution. This is an act of charity and will assist everyone in this time of pandemic. Those who have access to social media should continue to stream the Mass for those who choose to remain at home, especially those ill or in a high-risk category.”

TIPS FOR CARING FOR ONE ANOTHER

We shall mark the pews for proper distancing in our sitting arrangement in the church.

Communion will be ONLY in the hand only and Only the Sacred Body of the Lord. Please maintain 6 feet between parishioners as you line up for communion.

To keep recommendations of social distancing, altar servers will not serve at this time.

There will be no Procession of gifts to the altar. One assigned usher will present the collection to the altar.

The Sign of Peace should be without human touch, such as a small bow or wave.

Please DO NOT CONGREGATE in groups inside the building – move through the Narthex so as to avoid a bottle neck. IF desiring to visit, please do so outside with recommended social distancing.

Please respect and care for one another by wearing a mask and maintaining 6 feet distance.  This is strongly recommended as a sign of our desire to do our part in helping prevent others from potential contagion.  (Masks are not recommended for children less than 2 years of age).

Only the church will be utilized for mass. Please be respectful of closed areas.

Restrooms in the narthex will be available for use.

Frequently touched surfaces and areas will be cleaned between all Masses.

Donations Requested: As you may be aware hand sanitizer and approved cleansing wipes remain in short supply. If you have excess and are able to share, donations are gratefully accepted at the church office on Monday and Wednesday between 8:00-12:00 Noon

 

God Bless,

Rev. Anselm Amadi

 

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 PENTECOST SUNDAY: YEAR A

 

THEME: THE HOLY SPIRIT-THE POWER OF RENEWAL

 

 

The power of the Holy Spirit right from the beginning has been the power of creation, and recreation. Though the Jews did not know the person of the Holy Spirit, yet he has been present from creation. God renews the face of the earth through the same power of the Spirit: "send forth your Spirit and they shall be created, and you will renew the face of the earth” (Psalm104:30). The Holy Spirit transforms and renews the face of the church and restores believers to the glory of new creation. All who are in Christ are new creation (2cor 5:17). By the power of the Holy Spirit, we cease to be animal man, controlled by instincts, but spiritual man led by the spirit (Gal 5:25).

 

 

THE HOLY SPIRIT AND THE POWER OF NEW CREATION: Already at the beginning of creation, the Holy Spirit hovered over the waters of the deep, that formless void, bringing to birth an ordered structure of reality which God saw and declared that it was very good. When the beautiful face of creation was distorted by the fact of original sin and subsequent wickedness of men that brought about the deluge, a creative action of the Holy Spirit brought about a new life. To renew the face of the earth again, Noah, the Father figure of the new world order, sent out a dove (symbol of the Holy Spirit), over the waters of the deluge. This calls to mind the original creation account and assures a renewed face of the earth. 

 

Another episode is the baptism of the Lord Jesus. The Holy Spirit appeared in form of a dove still over the water of rebirth and the voice of the Father confirmed Jesus, the new man, as pleasing to Him, just as He declared the first creation as very good.

 

 

FROM MACROCOSM TO MICROCOSM: The action of the Holy Spirit in the creation history continues from the physical world (macrocosm) to the small world, that is man. whom St. Gregory describes as a microcosm. The old state of the world was described as "formless void" (Tohuw waabohow). The above Hebrew words suggest, void and vacancy, nothingness and confusion. That shows the condition, not only of the earth, but of the human person, prior to the influence of the Spirit of God. When we apply this logic to man as a microcosm (a small world), it means that, man suffers the same primordial emptiness and confusion when the Holy Spirit is not in him. 

 

In the Genesis account of creation, the Spirit of God hovered over the formless void and there came order out of disorder, harmony out of disharmony. In the life of men too, the Holy Spirit brings order to our disordered bodily inclinations and desires. Hence, self control is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:23). Given our disordered bodily inclination, we need the Holy Spirit to bring this disorder under control.  

 

 

IT IS NOT BY POWER AND MIGHT... (ZEC. 4:6): The Word of God to Zerubabel, says, it is not by power not by might but by my Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of power. Without the Holy Spirit, we cannot live the Christian life. As the apostles were empowered to preach without fear,   so are believers empowered to do the will of God. Without the Holy Spirit, it will be impossible to live the spiritual life. 

 

The Spirit of God is designated in the Hebrew Bible as Ruach Elohim. The Word is translated to English as wind, breath and spirit. When God created Adam, there was no life in him until God breathed into him, and then Adam became a living being (Gen. 2:7). It was that Ruach Elohim, the Spirit of God that gave life to Adam. Again, in Ezekiel 37:10, when dry bones were enfleshed, there was no life in them until wind came from the four corners of the earth, they became a life.  It was all about the Spirit of God. In John 20:22, Jesus breathed on his apostles, (as it was with Adam), and said, receive the Holy Spirit. It was the Spirit that empowered them in anticipation of Pentecost. The Holy Spirit empowers us even to live.  Without the Holy Spirit, we are spiritually dead. As it was said to the church as Sardis "you are reputed to be a life but you are dead" (Rev. 3:1).

 

 

The Holy Spirit is the spirit of new life, the gift of God to those who believe.  The old life of sin belongs to the old man but the new life is life in the spirit. We need to prepare ourselves to receive the Holy Spirit in newness of life. The life of holiness is the new life, making us new creatures. It is in this new wine skin that the new wine of the Spirit works effectively.