Read the daily quote from Pope Francis


article 05/21/17

Dear Friends,

As I prepare to leave St. Columban’s I look over the two years of my assignment with a lot of satisfaction.  Our parish has grown in every cultural community.  There is a feel of energy and joy on campus.  Our collection is healthy which has helped us to enhance and grow our ministries.  There is peace in our parish and a real love for our Lord and our faith.

These are some of the things that I hope will continue in the life of the parish after me. 

Division is a deadly thing and has no place in a Catholic parish.  One of the rare blessings of St Columban parish is that we are very diverse yet without the tension and division that happens in other places.  Here, cultural differences are respected and even cherished.  We learn from each other and we enjoy the gifts that come from cultures not our own.  If we can hold on to this, the parish will remain healthy and at peace.

Love for Jesus in the Holy Eucharist is the central piece of our Catholic faith.  Here at the parish, the restoration of the Blessed Sacrament back to its original place is a sign of what should be the reality in each of us.  The tabernacle in the center of the church is like the heart in the center of the human body!  Here the Lord will be glorified and adored.  This must be a constant reminder to keep Jesus in the center of our own lives and homes.

Here in the parish we have enjoyed our devotions, whether by way of old or new traditions.  For example, St. Columban’s has a long history of celebrating the live Stations of the Cross in the Hispanic and Vietnamese communities and now we have the processions in May and October in honor of the Virgin Mary.  These expressions of faith are important for us; they bring joy to the heart.  They also bring joy to God and the Mother of God. 

St Columban’s has a long tradition of helping the poor and the homeless and this needs to intensify.  Problems in the county continue to grow and St. Columban’s must be on the forefront of meeting those challenges.  For this reason a close relationship with the City and with the Police and Fire Departments is essential.  Working together we can build up the city we all love.  Support for the homeless programs under Sr Brid and our St. Vincent de Paul services needs to continue to grow.

Our Youth and Young Adult programs are being refined over the summer months.  Not only do our youth need to learn their Catholic faith they need to become missionaries.  This happens when they learn and love their Catholicism.  If this doesn’t happen there will not be a new generation to carry on the faith.

These are some of my thoughts as I prepare to leave, areas of concern and hope.  May the Lord bless you all under the leadership of Monsignor Tuan and may the future of St. Columban’s be bright, like that lantern in the dark night.  I will always remember St. Columban’s with love and deep gratitude.

Fr Al