You Are ….

Welcome to the Second Sunday after the Feast of the Glorious Epiphany. In this week’s Gospel passage, we continue to see John directing his followers towards Jesus, “the Lamb of God.” Andrew and an un-named man follow Jesus until he turns and starts a conversation with them. This classic scene reminds us of our vocation. Having experienced the attraction of Jesus, Andrew goes and informs his brother Simon Peter, who then comes to meet Jesus. This encounter between Jesus and Peter changed the history of the world.

The first words that Jesus spoke in this passage was a simple question: “What are you looking for?” or “What do you want?” Jesus asks about our desires so that he can respond to them. It is so important that we know and understand what we want. To be able to do this we must understand who we are. When I understand who I am, in my strengths and my weaknesses, in my good and my bad, I can come to Him and know exactly what I want from Him because there is one thing that is for sure, He knows exactly who I am. Therefore, I should not be afraid to come as I am with all my hopes, with all my fears and with all my desires and He will say to me: “You Are” who you are, and I love you abundantly.

Let us all come to Him this year and let it be a renewed journey of faith in the Lord. Let us truly come to Him with our all and not be afraid. Let us ask Him to invite us to see where He can be found, and to remain with Him. More so, let us ask Him to look at us in the same way that He looked at Simon Peter so that like Peter we too can change the world through Christ and through Christ alone.

On a parish note, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to the members of the Sodality and their chaplain Father Youwakim who worked tirelessly last week preparing the feast of the Epiphany sweets and savouries. These hard-working men and women worked for hours, even on the day of the feast preparing and allowing us to experience this beautiful tradition. May the Lord’s presence in your lives always be everlasting so that you can continue to glorify Him in all that you do.

This week our Teens and their leaders went on their annual camp. Nearly seventy teens and over twenty leaders together with their chaplain Deacon Danny reflected on the year of Martyrdom and Martyrs in the Maronite Church and lived the theme of Courage. A big thank you to AJ Stephan and all the leaders who have been preparing for months, working behind the scenes to make the camp an enjoyable as well as a deeply spiritual experience for the teens. A special thank you to Matthew Semaan who was the key-note speaker at the camp.

Finally, next week we begin with the three weeks of Commemorations, starting with the Commemoration of the Priests. Before we begin our Lenten journey, it is very important that we reflect on the people who have past and commemorate their memory in the Church. When we understand and appreciate our past, we can truly look to our future with the faith, hope and love of those we were before us.

Fr Tony Sarkis

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