Happy New Year! The Church designates January 1 as a world day of prayer for peace on the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God. “It is a day for all of us to reflect on the witness of the Blessed Mother and our role in building the kingdom of God among us,” says Fr. Larry Hemmelgarn, C.PP.S., our provincial director. “All the problems that we face in our world, in our communities and even in our families can be overwhelming, potentially making us feel helpless and wanting to throw our hands up in the air, admitting defeat, but that is not the stance of people of faith. That’s not what the Blessed Mother did in the face of the challenges of her life.
“We believe that God is present among us and as people of faith we can have an impact on our world. How? One person at a time, beginning with ourselves. We want to be part of the solution of the challenges of our world. The best way to participate in that transformation is by allowing ourselves to be transformed—to become the people God calls us to be, individually and communally.
“By living our faith as fully as possible, we can move forward on our personal faith journey, which in turn gives us the strength and wisdom to reach out to those in need in our families and those with whom we interact daily, and then to extend a hand to the strangers among us, which has a ripple effect on our immediate community and the world.”