From the Vicar's Desk
DEARLY BELOVED IN CHRIST,
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you; and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face towards You and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26).
What a wonderful and powerful blessing this is! Here God asks Moses to speak to Aaron and his sons that they should bless the people of Israel with this benediction. The priestly benediction from the Old Testament is many centuries old and is probably the best-known blessing that comes to us from the Bible. Traditionally the priest blessed the people every morning after the sacrifice at the temple. The first part of each line of blessing calls for God’s personal act upon his people. He is asked to bless and protect them, be gracious by showing love and mercy in dealing with their failings and weakness and to bring them peace which involved their total welfare and salvation as the people of God. When the people of the Israel called on the name of the Lord, with faith and reverence, God’s power and presence became a reality for them, as it does for us today.
The blessings reveal a God who turns his face towards his people in love as He looks on them for good. It is very familiar to us because we are regularly blessed with these words in our churches at the close of worship and prayers. God’s blessing is for people of every generation. It is given to us so that, through us, God can bless His whole creation. God’s blessing care and involvement with His people continue His creative work. He seeks to share and bless others through us. Our forefather Abraham was called with the same meaning and commitment. Thus, God said to Abraham, “I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.” (Gen. 12:2). Let our lives be a blessed one and at the same time a blessing to many people.
Our VBS-2017 is going to take place from 12th to 15th of July, and I request all parents to send their children for the VBS. Education Sunday and Students Dedication service will be held on 6th of August. A three days retreat of our Youth Fellowship will be held from 25th to 27th of August. Evg. Sam John will lead and deliver the messages at this retreat. I invite all youth members to write Essays on “Christian Commitment to God’s Mission” (1000 words) and Short stories on “Commitment” (500 words) in Malayalam or English before 31st August and send the same to the Diocese. Sevika Sangham Day with Onam feast will be held on 1st Sunday of September and Senior Citizens Sunday will be observed on 17th of September.
We begin our ministry in Tampa (FL) with the priestly blessings to all of you. It is our earnest prayer that the Almighty God shall shower His peace and blessings to each and every one. We praise God for His call to serve the St. Mark’s Parish and believe that it is God given opportunity. I earnestly request your ceaseless prayers and support towards the success of the Parish ministry and the community life.