April 18 - 21
"What the paschal triduum actually celebrates is mystery, not history… The liturgies of these days do not “take us back” to the upper room or the path to Calvary. Their ultimate purpose is not to retrace or relive the last hours of Jesus’ life – nor to catch sight of him emerging from the tomb at Easter’s dawning. They celebrate not what once happened to Jesus but what is now happening among us as a people called to conversion, gathered in faith, and gifted with the Spirit of holiness. They celebrate God’s taking possession of our hearts at their deepest core, recreating us as a new human community broken like bread for the world’s life – a community rich in compassion, steadfast in hope, and fearless in the search for justice and peace." Taken from “The Three Days of Pascha,” Nathan Mitchell, in Assembly, Volume 18:1. © Notre Dame Center for Liturgy, Notre Dame, IN
Dear Faith Family,
Happy Palm Sunday! We are inching toward the celebration of our Risen Lord.
Before we go into the miracle of the Resurrection though, it is always helpful to dive into Jesus’ Passion. Holy Week is an incredibly somber moment. It’s hard not to feel sadness when we dive deep into the experience of the suffering of our God. Our human instinct drives us the opposite way, as it should, but I want to express the importance of understanding the difficulties of Christ’s passion.
We’ve heard the story a thousand times. God became man. Sometimes we hear it so often that it doesn’t strike us as much as it should. This is why Holy Week is so important. It’s not the idea of being masochistic or glorifying pain, but rather, when we contemplate the Passion of Christ, we recognize the motives behind it: God has always been willing to die for us.
Personal suffering should not be pursued in our lives (I want to stress the importance of this), but we also know that sadness is inevitable at various times in our lives. We will suffer from loss and struggle in various forms — it’s a part of being human. The reason we dive into Jesus’ Passion so intently is to recognize that He was willing to be one of us, for us.
So although it may feel somber to experience Christ’s Passion, the reality is, that through His suffering, He conquered death. We have such a unique faith that expresses that what we go through, (whether it is the highs of our lives or our lows) that Christ has experienced it and transformed it.
When we exclaim that Christ conquered death, it is not just in the moment of His Resurrection, but through Christ, death is not the end. So throughout this week I invite you to remind yourself in prayer, that death is not the end and that is how God intended it to be.
Youth and Young Adult Minister
Good Friday, April 19
Holy Saturday, April 20
Also visit: Triduum
Easter Sunday, April 21
This is an opportunity for deep intimacy and greater connection with Jesus. During your time, you can pray, be silent or engage in spiritual reading.
This devotional prayer practice allows us to praise and adore Jesus, and also for our gracious Lord to reach out and adore us.
Come for 10, 20, 30 minutes or any amount of time, for quiet prayer before our Lord Jesus.
To commit to one hour, contact
Also visit: Prayer, Lent
Tuesday, April 23
Saturday, April 27
1:00 to 4:00 pm
5012 Seminary Road, Camarillo, CA 93012
For information, contact (805) 482·2755, x1105 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Also visit: stjohnsem.edu
Sign up your little one for a fun time at church during Mass.
Children learn so much! From the Sign of the Cross to bible stories, songs and more.
Super fun to make friends and be at church on Sundays!! Parents love it too.
Register your child as soon as they turn 3.
Anytime, in the garden
Through this series of fourteen stations, we recall Jesus’ great love for us. This beautiful, ancient prayer commemorates successive incidents on Jesus' journey from condemnation by Pilate to his crucifixion and burial. Stations of the Cross is most commonly prayed during Lent, particularly on Fridays especially Good Friday, but can be prayed at any time.
Consider praying the Stations in our prayer garden. Use one of three versions, found in the garden’s box:
Also visit: Lent, Prayer
Next Series Begins May 6
Tuesday, May 7
Recently a Facebook friend posted about an “answered prayer” so I settled in to read the post, thinking it was going to be a heartwarming story. What I found was a tale of road rage in L.A. traffic in which he “prayed” that an impatient, somewhat erratic driver who passed him by would experience a flat tire. And what did he find a few miles up the road... the crazy driver in the shoulder with a flat tire! The acquaintance was quite pleased with his “prayer” and God for listening.
I was really surprised by this post, thinking he really misunderstands the concept of prayer but then today’s gospel of the woman caught in adultery reminded me how dangerous and common a self righteous attitude can be. The scribes, Pharisees and Jesus know full well that, according to Mosaic law, adultery is punishable by stoning. In their righteousness the scribes and Pharisees are hoping to punish a guilty woman and testing Jesus to see if he will follow the law. They are ready to lob stones at her. But Jesus counters and says, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” What happens next is hopeful. They all leave. The woman is untouched. Jesus forgives her and tells her to sin no more.
How many times do we pass judgment on someone for something they have done wrong and hope they “get what they deserve?” How often do we hope a guilty person gets the worst possible punishment? Have we ever taken a little bit of delight in someone’s pain or punishment? This self righteous attitude is unproductive, dangerous, and sinful on our part.
How can we possibly know what someone else is going through? Why was that guy driving erratically on the freeway? Why was that woman in such a relationship? Why is that teenager acting out? Why is our neighbor always so prickly? Why is that coworker always so difficult? Why is that kid such a bully? Why is that cashier so grumpy?
If we’re really made in God’s image, then we’re inherently good. We’re all wired for good, but this life is not perfect. We make bad decisions. We choose the wrong actions and words. Sometimes we’re on the receiving end of another’s bad decisions, leaving us to perpetuate the harm and pain. God did not promise an easy life but he promises to be with us through the trials. God promises us forgiveness. When was the last time we asked for forgiveness? What did that feel like?
We have two weeks left of Lent. Perhaps we can take this remaining time before Easter to reflect on our moments of self righteousness and then put ourselves in the place of the adulterous woman. Put ourselves in the places of our own guilt and shame and remember what forgiveness feels like. Instead of delighting in another’s guilt and misfortune, let us put down our stones and delight in another’s experience of Jesus’ care and compassion and God’s mercy.
Faith Life Minister
Second Wednesday of the month
Photo by Julius Acero
A heartfelt thank you from Unbound!
We hope this “Thank you” from some very special people will bless you!
Listen to Fr. Ighacho
Sponsor a child, youth, or elder in Latin America, Asia and Africa. No matter who we are or where we live, we’re all part of one human family created in God’s image. When you sponsor a child, young adult or elder through Unbound, you invest in personalized benefits that support goals chosen by the sponsored individual and their family such as education, dignified housing, better nutrition and developing livelihoods.
As a sponsor, you’ll get the satisfaction of knowing you’re living out your faith as part of a caring, inclusive global community. You’ll also learn about your new friend from letters and photos, and you can write and send photos to your friend, too!
For more information please contact email@example.com
Great Easter Vigil
Sunday, June 2
Many thanks to our walkers, donors, bakers, registration volunteers, crossing guard, route markers, first-aid nurse and welcoming helpers.
“O God, to those who have hunger, give bread, And to us who have bread, give the hunger for justice.”
-Latin American prayer
Every March our parish joins with other Camarillo churches and neighbors from different faiths, cultures and ages, to stand against hunger in our local community and the world.
The reason we walk is because “they walk”. Hungry people in developing countries typically walk as much as six miles a day to get food, water, and fuel and to take their goods to market. We walk to be in solidarity with their struggle for existence. Together we raise awareness and funds.
The funds raised will fight hunger around the world and our local food pantries: St. Mary Magdalen/Padre Serra Christian Service Program, Christians Acting Together, Food Share, St. Columba’s Episcopal Food Pantry, Seventh Day Adventist Church Food Pantry, Many Meals and RAIN.
A Message from Crop Walk
"Every year, Church World Service tallies a list of the Top 100 fundraising teams for CROP Hunger Walks, a group that we call the CREAM of the CROP. With over 900 walks and thousands of teams, we’re very happy to tell you that Padre Serra is a CREAM of the CROP team for your participation in the Camarillo CROP Hunger Walk!"
Way to go team!
I just wanted to take an opportunity to thank all of you for your support in Youth and Young Adult Ministry. A couple weeks ago we had our annual “Fairways to Heaven” fundraiser and again it was a huge success. The numbers will be announced soon, but I can tell you that the support at the event was evident in your willingness to be present.
Thank you all for the support that you’ve given our ministries. Even for those who were unable to make it to the fundraiser, I appreciate all of your support. The dream of getting a new youth center is quickly becoming a reality and it is all thanks to all of you.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much.
Youth and Young Adult Minister
Behind The Scenes
Holy Day Of Obligation
Message Of The Week
St. John’s Seminary