Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish

Opening new paths with the Risen Jesus

Dear diocesan men and women,

It’s Easter, and once again we hear this announcement: Christ is risen, He is truly risen!  Easter means passage.  As Pope Francis so aptly wrote in his Easter 2023 message: “In Jesus the decisive passage of humanity has been accomplished: from death to life, from sin to grace, from fear to trust, from desolation to communion.”

But when we look at the current state of our humanity, we see that there is much to be done to make this passage a reality.  Indeed, more than ever, our world is facing socio-political, humanitarian and ecological crises; conflicts and deadly wars afflict millions of people who have to live in terrible conditions or flee their homelands.  We could give in to resignation and despair, or abandon the fight for peace, justice, human rights and the establishment of a better world and a reconciled humanity.  But with Jesus, who triumphed over hatred, sin and death through His passion, death and resurrection, we know that He is alive, and that He continues to walk with us, to forge new paths of life and love.  He is counting on us to open up new paths of peace, solidarity and sharing, to bring hope and comfort to all those populations suffering from hunger, poverty, violence, injustice and rejection.

As the Synod on Synodality invites us, let us walk together in the construction of a living Church on the move, in the building of the Kingdom of God.  Let us recognize all the beautiful signs of life and charity accomplished in our communities and in our world; let us be radiant witnesses to the light and life of the Risen Lord. And as Pope Francis writes in his Easter 2023 message, “let us too, rediscover the taste for the road, let us welcome the rhythm of hope, let us taste in advance the beauty of heaven”.

A resplendent Easter, filled with the ever-new life and joy of the Risen Lord!

† Noël Simard
Bishop of Valleyfield

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