“Gathered together for this Birthday Celebration Mass for Helen in this chapel, so beautifully restored in honor and in memory of her parents, I wish to greet first Msgr. Rick Woy, Rector of the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, together with the President of the University of Notre Dame in Maryland, Dr. Mary Lou Yam, and immediate past President, Mary Pat Seurkamp. I warmly greet Mac Passano, Helen’s loving husband of 44 years, and her daughters, Tammy, Catherine, and Sarah, as well as Helen’s many grandchildren, family, and friends. Please know that you have our love and support as we celebrate Helen’s birthday— her birth into this world and her birth into everlasting life. And let us do so by focusing on her life through the lens of the season of Advent and Christmas and this evening’s Scripture readings.
Advent is a wonderful time in the life of the Church. As we know, it marks the beginning of a new liturgical year, a time when we are called to open our hearts more widely to Christ as once again we remember and re-live the events of his life – his coming into the world, his teaching and miracles, his death and resurrection. And it is a time of heightened spiritual awareness when the Scripture passages we read reminds us not to be anxious about the future or so caught up in our pursuits and pleasures that we will fail to prepare our hearts to receive Christ – at Christmas, in our daily lives, and, indeed, at the end of our lives. Advent teaches us that, even amid the passing things of this world, we can draw closer to Christ and live more deeply in his love.”
Read the complete homily HERE.