Parish Priest’s Message

Yet another year has come to a close as we bid farewell to 2023 and usher in 2024. As we reflect on the past year, it's a time to express gratitude to God for the blessings bestowed upon us and to seek His continued blessings in the new year. The transition from one year to another, marked by a change in the calendar, prompts us to ponder: what truly defines the newness of the year?
Is it merely a shift in numbers and months, or does it signify something deeper, something we need to experience within ourselves? The essence of the New Year lies not just in the pages of a calendar but in our personal journey of embracing the new. If we fail to internalize and experience this freshness, the year becomes nothing more than a change in dates and seasons.
Consider the analogy of wearing new clothes, acquiring a new vehicle, or embarking on a new job. These moments bring joy, care, and a sense of sharing with others. The anticipation and preparation associated with these new beginnings underscore the impact they have on our lives. Similarly, as we enter 2024, we must ready ourselves to discard the old, letting go of what no longer serves us.
Preparing for the new year involves cleansing internally—our minds, attitudes, behaviour, and nature. Shedding the unwanted baggage from the past year, which hindered our personal happiness and peace, is crucial. Just as we clean ourselves before donning new clothes or maintaining a new vehicle, we must rid ourselves of negativity and undesirable traits.
Expressing gratitude to God is integral to this process. Recognizing His continuous blessings, especially the gift of life and the New Year, sets the tone for our readiness to embrace positive change. Gratitude becomes a daily practice, helping us navigate each day with the hope that new blessings of joy and happiness will unfold.
To truly make the New Year meaningful, we must consciously let go of old burdens and approach the days ahead with gratitude and humility. Just as we prepare ourselves to wear new clothes or undertake new endeavors, we can make the New Year a transformative experience by spending time with God in prayer. This companionship can guide us in being a blessing to others through our words, behavior, and outreach.
Drawing inspiration from the feast of Mary, Mother of God on January 1st, let us emulate her humility in accepting God's will and carrying it through life's journey. Like her, may we find strength and joy in doing the will of God, even in the face of challenges, trusting that, in the end, we too will receive the glory.
As we embark on the journey of 2024, let us seek the intercession of Mother Mary, asking her to teach us how to walk, live, and lead with humility and devotion to God. May this New Year bring blessings, happiness, and prosperity to all. God bless us abundantly. Happy New Year!

Fr. Francis Swaminathan
  (Parish Priest)