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From The Pastor's Desk,

"...Shout and sing for joy, O inhabitants of Zion, for great in your midst is the HOLY ONE of Israel." - Isaiah 12:6

My Dear Parishioners,

Warm and loving greetings to each and everyone of you!

As I sit at my desk preparing my Christmas message, I can't believe that very soon 2017 will come to a close. What a year it has been! Well, this Holy Feast of the Lord's Nativity at the end of the year calls us to be humble, loving and trusting enough to allow ourselves to be found by Christ and be brought "home". Christmas is a time for home coming. All over the world family members separated due to work, worries or even hurt relationships make a special effort to put time, tasks and grudges aside to come home. Isn't it amazing that in spite of the widespread commercialization of Christmas, people still realize deep down in their hearts that the birth of our Savior is an occasion to be celebrated with loved ones in unity, peace and joy?

Our Parish of Sacred Heart is also a family. Together we are sons and daughters of God the Father, sisters and brothers of our Lord Jesus and bound together by the love of the Holy Spirit. I guess that some among us may have been away from Church, butnow have decided to come "home" for Christmas. Whatever the reasons that might have kept you away - whether hurt, anger or shame caused by scandals or bad leadership or the widely prevalent- misunderstood and non-populist Catholic beliefs in today's secular culture, or the feeling of being unloved by the Church or your Community or just plain busyness, distraction or spiritual laziness - you were sorely missed and no one judges you. It's great to have you back where you belong at Christmas and we warmly welcome you. You are unique and vital to the Church, the Lord Jesus loves you and invites you afresh to be part of His great "Communion", the Church.

Your Parish loves you and needs you, your special talents, your active participation, your prayers and your practical support. Just as your home-coming is a joy to the family, you can also be a joy in your Community. How? It may not always be in big and profound ways, but in small possible ways; by sharing ideas, talents and resources that you are blessed with. The upcoming Christmas not only invites you to be a joy in your family but more importantly in your Community as well.

May the Lord Jesus grant you deep peace and inner joy this Christmas as Jesus seeks to be allowed into your heart. May this Christmas see the beginning of a new personal relationship with Him for all of us, as we celebrate the great mystery of Christmas! Welcome home.

On behalf of the clergy team, I wish each one of you A HAPPY AND CHRIST FILLED CHRISTMAS. May all your celebrations be filled with the Joy of Christ in you and in your Community.

Fr. Innocent Fernandes, SVD
(Parish Priest)

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