Fifth Sunday of Easter
by Fr. Ivan Olmo

“God is greater than our hearts and knows everything.”  I am most grateful and genuinely thankful for the upbringing I received and for the opportunity to be able to say without hesitation or regret that I appreciate the lessons life taught me.  I am grateful that with the blessed help of God’s grace, I can honestly see and even be grateful and thankful for the disciplinary actions that were necessary to correct and calm me and prevent me from going astray.  I am most appreciative for the grace and gift of the apostolic faith I so longed for and needed that my parents and godparents showed me, provided to me and handed on to me.  These were all helpful, useful and necessary gifts, tools and lessons in my formative years that still prove to be helpful, useful and necessary in my current journey and in the adventures that are still to come.  In the spirit of Saint Ignatius, I can honestly say that I am thankful for all and everyone who helped me and caused me to turn and return to God.  I thank the Lord for teaching me and helping me how to learn to pray to Jesus with faith, confidence and sincerity of heart.  How to believe and trust in Jesus and how to ask and permit Jesus to heal me, sanctify me and make me holy.  I am also ever so grateful and thankful for the gift of being able to seek humbly Our Lady’s powerful intercession and asking Our Mother Mary for constant help and ongoing assistance daily, often and always.  What a grace and blessing it is to know and be thankful to know all the ways we have been loved and mercifully treated, helped and supported, guided and protected, forgiven and redeemed. Our gracious Lord and Savior truly has been so good to you and to me.  I think about all the ways and people God so graciously provided to help me. What a gift and blessing.  I can also acknowledge and honestly recall without reliving the pain, the ways, experiences and people who were not so helpful, useful or necessary but rather hurtful and wounding.  The ways people projected their hurt and anger, their perceptions and prejudices, their choices and preferences, their bad decisions and ideas.  All unhappy circumstances and rather limiting and useless but with the help of God’s grace, his tender love and mercy, can be great lessons in life that can transform a bad situation into something that can be helpful and useful to others.

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