Letter From
Our Pastor
Pastor's Page
Lent is a time of spiritual renewal. We must not, however, use the term renewal too lightly
as is often the case. Renewal is not an elevation of the emotions, making us merely to feel
good about ourselves. The story of Esau reminds us that, the gifts of God-grace, truth, and
our heavenly birthright are not to be treated cheaply or lightly. Esau lost his birthright
because he thought little of the gifts offered to him.
Authentic renewal can only come as the result of a sacrificial and deliberate labor. In the
case of our spiritual lives, renewal can only come if we are willing to place ourselves under
the strict spiritual disciplines of praying, fasting, and almsgiving; those enjoined on us by
the personal example of the Savior himself. As the Savior goes into the desert to do
combat with the forces of the world, the flesh, and the devil; he bids us to be aware that
we must do the same or we shall risk losing our birthright of grace: Intimate friendship with
God.
Our holy religion is a great gift to us. It allows us already here on earth to begin the
enjoyment of our Divine inheritance, a bequest given to us as the cost of the Passion,
Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. And yet, isn’t it easy and common to neglect our
religion on the best of days? We have been baptized; we have been taught our duty; we
have been taught to pray; we know the Creed; our consciences have been enlightened; and
we have the opportunity to come to Church. This is our birthright of grace, the very
privileges of our birth of water and the spirit, but it is easy to sell it, as Esau did. Satan can
tempt us with some bribe of this world, and we can end up giving up our heavenly
inheritance in exchange for what is sure to perish, and thus, make our souls perish along
with it.
By dedicating ourselves to praying, fasting, and almsgiving we learn a closer, deeper, and
more intimate discipleship of Jesus Christ; learning to follow His way more closely so as to
live for the Kingdom that is to come. As Blessed John Henry Newman once wrote:
“Nothing is more common than for men to think that, because they are familiar with
words, they understand the ideas they stand for.”
The spiritual gravity of the times in which we live require an urgent response to walk more
intelligently, intimately, and deliberately in the way of Jesus Christ; a way that is being
confronted on all fronts by the atheistic, secularist attitudes which corrode the soul of man.
Our Lenten journey, facilitated by the embrace of spiritual discipline-the necessary and
essential labor of our Christian birthright-will fill us with that spiritual gift of understanding
of the ideas, or more accurately, The Person we stand for and with: Jesus Christ the
Savior.
During this Lenten season and during this Year of Faith, I pray that the familiarity of the
words we pray and the worship we render will lead to understanding; and that
understanding will lead to conviction; with conviction becoming the actions of holiness,
virtue, and the imitation of Jesus Christ-The Way, The Truth, and The Life.
May the Sorrowful Mother of the Savior intercede for us and walk with us on this forty-
day journey of discipline, renewal, and redemption.

Yours in Christ,
Father Phillip W. De Vous