I will take a needed rest from writing as I get out into the field for other photo opportunities and reflection. We will resume the Pastor's Desk page in September.
Many of you will also be taking a break from the normal rhythms of the academic year. If and when you prepare for a getaway be sure to plan ahead and see where the best times and places for mass are at www.masstimes.org.READ MORE
I had a little rest after Easter to travel north and visit the Scenic Cathedral Valley, Utah. Some settler with a religious appeal was reminded of some ancient European Gothic Cathedral and the name stuck. I don't know for sure. What was rather restful was the 58 mile off road trek to get there and it took a while to arrive because in most places it was imprudent to drive faster that 15 mph. But the anticipation of seeing the Valley grew at each turn.
It also dawned on me at a brief moment that our desire to see Jesus or to celebrate Mass should be something similar. Preparation does that to us. The better we prepare for any activity, the more fruitful it becomes.READ MORE
Happy Mother’s Day to all Moms of Holy Cross! This was an image I took at the April 6th Family Day here at Holy Cross. The priests offer you a special blessing at the end of Mass this day to prayerfully conserve you in your role as educators of your children, both biological and spiritual. You are traditionally the first educators in the faith. The Church knows the delicate role of service that you provide in the home and may He bestow on you the wisdom to raise God fearing children. Your kids see you in rapport with all members of the family, but especially in your rapport with God.READ MORE
If you stand in one place long enough, The Emerald Swallowtail will perch on a daisy to frame a really nice shot. I took this a couple of months ago at the Botanical Garden in Phoenix. I'm not into shooting flowers. I prefer to shoot rodeos and dirt bike races. This quiet pose of nature speaks to me of God in other ways: that He is restful, playful, gentle. After all, it is His handiwork and all the perfections and beauty we see in nature exist first and foremost in God as their Author.READ MORE
Northern New Mexico has an interesting rock formation in the town of Shiprock. Millions of years ago lava spewed to form this one of a kind lava mountain. There are several local legends concerning its ties to the Navajo Peoples: One legend describes how a village existed on the mountain top until lightning devastated the village and ruined the access trails from below. Since that time, climbing the peak is forbidden in order not to disturb the ghosts who still roam the peak.READ MORE
Here’s an image I snapped early morning in the Valley of the Gods, Utah. It was early February. The surroundings were dead silent and brought me into this prayerful reflection: Something similar our Lord Jesus walked into when beginning his public ministry and trained his body with 40 days of fasting and prayer.READ MORE
Not a whole lot of years have passed us by since these youthful members of our parish were sitting in the laps of their parents and making all sorts of indiscreet noises from the pews. But now look at them! This image was taken as members of our Holy Cross youth groups finished their yearly retreat in Williams, AZ.
A few parishioners point out that we need a cry room for all the babies. Our present structure won’t allow us to make more space available. So, I will continue to invite the families to come as they are in every size and maturity. Yes, the Church can be noisy at certain masses, but what I hear in those young cries are the newest generation of Catholics being exposed to the faith, hope and love of our parish community as they profess their love for Jesus Christ. A child’s spontaneous cries are summoning you to be examples of devotion. They see what’s going on. Later, they will process what they see and remember from you.READ MORE
At the Riparian Reserve hummingbirds abound. They're hard to catch, not only in a net but on film. As I tried to remain hidden behind the brush waiting for its return, I thought of its incessant activity, always beating its wings, flying to and fro, and never posing on a branch for more than a few seconds. Our fast-paced lives can mimic the life of these flying jewels if we're not too careful. We've got time for everything requiring our business, but no time to rest, and by rest, I mean resting in the Lord through prayer.READ MORE
To my Parish Family of Holy Cross, I wish you a Happy Easter! May today's celebration of Jesus' definitive victory over the sin and death increase your sense of purpose in this world.
There are a few souls out there sleeping in today, oblivious to the real meaning of our greatest celebration within Catholicism. Should you reach out by phone or home visit to friends and family, have a kind word to say about what your Savior and Lord has done for you. Do try to share this news. Grasping Easter is all about understanding better who we are and why we need God. And once you've done that, take aim at the chocolate bunny ear and celebrate that too.READ MORE