Mercy Mondays: Chaplain’s Corner – On celebrating Easter
It’s so good to see so many mask-less smiling faces on campus as the spring warms up Salve Regina. When I arrived here at the beginning of August 2020, we were in the midst of the pandemic. So I’m thrilled to see so many smiling faces in and out of the chapel, classroom, the Mercy Center for Spiritual Life and more.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to get to know you and your families more throughout my time here. It has been almost two full academic years since I came here, and I’m absolutely excited to see where we are going as a Catholic, mercy institution.
On that note, let’s take a moment to contemplate Easter, which will be coming up this weekend.
Easter is a time of new birth, renewal, growth, and new beginnings. For this reason, we celebrate the Sacraments of Initiation. It is also a time for us to keep each other in prayer.
May our prayers be with those who are suffering from a forced newness of life due to war, poverty, anguish and political unrest. As a community of faith and an institution for higher learning, we have been holding in prayer all those impacted by suffering, including the Ukrainian-Russian conflict.
Pope Francis prayed on Easter Sunday 2021, “May the light of the risen Jesus be a source of rebirth for migrants fleeing from war and extreme poverty. Let us recognize in their faces the marred and suffering face of the Lord as he walked the path to Calvary.”
Here, we at Salve Regina know and respond to the critical concerns of mercy in many ways. Now more than ever, we are reminded of their impact on society. In times of distress, it is easy to become discouraged and feel defeated. Pope Francis tells us that Easter is the time we celebrate the Risen Christ, who is a hope that does not disappoint. Following the example of Pope Francis, I would like to invite you to rediscover the hope that we get in the risen Christ this Easter season.
Earlier this month, the University had two students received into the Roman Catholic Church through the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA). The RCIA program is a great way for students who are not Catholic or who are Catholic but missing one or more of the Seven Sacraments to receive them and be welcomed formally into the Catholic Church. It’s a fantastic way to deepen your faith and spirituality.
This program happens every year before Easter. Should anyone be interested or know someone who is interested, please have them reach out to me or Fr. Ray, the other University Chapel. For more information, visit our website.
On another note, please join Fr. Raymond Malm and I for the last Sunday Masses of the semester at Our Lady of Mercy Chapel on Sunday, April 24, at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. We will be blessing the seniors as they begin their new journeys in life. We will also be blessing the vegetable seeds that will be donated to St. Joseph’s Food Pantry to help its clients.
Offered by Rev. Scott Pontes, chaplain at Salve Regina’s Our Lady of Mercy Chapel
This post is part of an ongoing series called Mercy Mondays that highlights Salve Regina’s dedication to its Mercy Mission. Search the tag Mercy Mission for more updates on the Mercy branches of Salve Regina.