St Joan of Arc Parish

A community of disciples of Jesus Christ called to celebrate, proclaim and share with all the love of God!

100 Willow Bend Rd. Marlton, NJ 08053 | 856-983-0077

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From Our Pastor

30th Sunday of Ordinary Time/2014


Fr. Rich Dear Parishioners, Friends and Guests,

In the last two weeks we have all learned that a “synod” is a “journey together.” We have watched Pope and Bishops and Lay People, too (yes, there were lay people at the recent Synod in Rome) engage in dialogue, speaking and listening to one another. In spite of what we might hear in the media, that journey is not over. The proposals of this Synod are now sent to Bishops across the globe. There will be another meeting next October. Here is what Pope Francis said in his closing remarks to the Synod participants and to all of us:

“Dear brothers and sisters, now we still have one year to mature, with true spiritual discernment, the proposed ideas and to find concrete solutions to so many difficulties and innumerable challenges that families must confront; to give answers to the many discouragements that surround and suffocate families.”

As a parish community we too must continue to dialogue and discern how we can journey with families that face “difficulties and innumerable challenges.” As priests, Fr. Jorge and I, must continue to dialogue with you, to hear of your struggles and “discouragements,” as well as your hopes and dreams. What we want more than anything is to help all of us learn to love God and love one another.

Listening to each other is an important step in learning to love. Listening to God is equally important if we are to learn God’s ways. The Gospel has something important to say to families and to all of us. God is speaking to us. We must not be afraid to listen even if God surprises us a bit. (Again, from the Pope: “God is not afraid of new things! That is why he is continually surprising us, opening our hearts, guiding us in unexpected ways.”) Being content with what we already know is not the way of dialogue. If we are to truly journey together we must risk learning something new about each other … that goes for all of us, priests and bishops, spouses, family members, friends, parishioners, the whole Church.

Fr. Rich

Read Father Rich’s Homily for the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time/2014

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