Fr. Joe's Letter

Fr. Joe’s Letter

Nov 1, 2023

Election Day: Tuesday is the day we have been waiting for when we will be able
to vote for the protection of human life from the moment of conception to natural death. It is very unfortunate that an event that is so important to our life in
this great nation has to be marred by such division within our communities. At
any rate, it will soon be over and hopefully the TRUTH of God’s Word will prevail.
It is very important that we exercise our duty to vote. We have a moral obligation to participate in our government and how this government will operate and who will be our leaders. I
have tried to provide ample direction in the voting process for this election with various bulletin inserts that could guide us in how we vote as Catholics who have well-formed consciences rooted in the Word of God and the teachings of the Church. In voting we must always keep in mind the common good, especially the good of those who are most vulnerable,
i.e., the unborn, the aged, and people with disabilities. We must make every effort to assure
that all people have the right to life as God Himself has given it. We must always respect
God’s design and plan for our salvation. Life, marriage, and family are all essential parts of
God’s plan, and His design is always for our good and what is truly best for all of us whether
we realize it at this time or not. Trusting in God’s plan and design, even when we may not
“feel” the same way, is an act of faith. We need to pray for this kind of trust in all that God
does because He truly loves us more than we can ever imagine. Please make the Ɵme to
vote on Tuesday and do so prayerfully and carefully so that what we do will promote the
WILL OF GOD for the good of everyone. We cannot exercise our right to vote just for whom
and what we like, but always for whom and what is in union with God’s will.
Last Sunday was also Priesthood Sunday. Fr. Pat and I are very grateful for all your prayers
and support as we strive to God and His people. I am very grateful for Jon Hawkins, who
shared his vocation story with us after Communion at all the Masses and continues his studies and discernment of his vocation to the priesthood. Jon will, God willing, be ordained a
deacon in April 2024 and a priest in May of 2025. Please continue to pray for all priests and
seminarians so that their vocations may be strengthened and the Church may be well served
in holiness.
This week we celebrate Veterans Day as we honor all those who have served and are serving
our country in the armed forces. November 11 is the 105th anniversary of the signing of the
armistice that ended the First World War in 1918. Peace finally came after four years of one
of the bloodiest wars in the history of the world. It was to be the war that ended all wars.
Unfortunately, that was not to be, the world is still plagued by wars in many parts of the
world. It is very fitting that we honor the men and women who are willing to serve and give
their lives for the sake of freedom. We need to thank them for their willingness to serve us
and defend our freedom. Please remember in your prayers those who are serving now and
those who have served in the past. May God bless them for their dedication and spirit of
November is the month of the Holy Souls, so it is a suitable time for us not only to pray for
them, but also to reflect on our own mortality. The one thing that none of us can ever avoid
is death no matter what we do. It is not a gloomy or morbid thing to do to reflect on our
death. Death is the birth into eternal life and as long as we have done all that we can to love
God and our neighbor, we have nothing to fear. People who fear death are usually the ones
who have gotten too caught up in the distractions of this world and have lived too much for
what the world has to offer them. Those who have lived for God even though they have
sinned, as long as they have turned back to God to seek His love and mercy, then they have
nothing to fear. Many of the saints reflected every day on their death; the moment that
they would meet God face to face. Doing this can only help us to stay focused on God and
trying over and over to do His will. In the weeks ahead I will offer some ideas and thoughts
on preparing our funerals or the funerals of our loved ones. I have done this in the past and
it is a good thing for us to know about.

Fr. Joe Labak