Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am writing to you from the past! No, I’m not actually time traveling, but given the way the holidays, weekends, and bulletin publishing has worked out, this letter was written even before Christmas. That said, it’s a perfect time to wish you a happy New Year! The turn of the calendar always brings with it a certain hope and expectation for the year ahead. It’s new, it’s fresh, and it’s unburdened by the past.

And in a “normal” year, that’s what we would all be focusing on, I’m sure. But as the last two years have shown us, normal doesn’t quite mean what it used to.
Now, we can either focus on the things that we are limited in, and have a certain negative view as we long for the way things used to be, or we can see that 2022 is a new opportunity to expand who and what we are and realize that there’s always something good to discover and to cherish the positives that already exist in our
lives. There’s a balance in these approaches that we as Catholic Christians are called to embrace.

Please do not think that I am advocating for what is sometimes referred to as “toxic positivity.” In its most extreme cases, toxic positivity is the attitude that refuses to acknowledge that there are difficulties and obstacles in life. “Gotta think positive, can’t let anything get you down.” Even the smallest mention of something
unpleasant is rebuffed. It’s not a realistic way of looking at the world.
We as disciples of Christ need to recognize and acknowledge the presence of the Cross in our lives. It would be silly to say to that it isn’t there; any given day has its struggles, sometimes great, sometimes small. Our Blessed Lord invites us to take up our cross daily in order to follow Him.

But the Cross leads to the Resurrection. And it is our hope in the Resurrection that should sustain and buoy us in the ups and downs of life. Who knows what exactly 2022 will hold in store for us? But whether it be the greatest of joys or the deepest of sorrows, the victory of Christ’s Resurrection will help to see us through.

Know my prayers for a happy and healthy 2022 for you and your loved ones. And may the power of the Resurrection give you hope throughout the entire year!

Peace and Goodness,
Fr. Dan