A few weeks back, I wrote the words of J. Forbes. “No one gets into heaven without a letter of recommendation from the poor.” Those letters are now being written for you, the parishioners of Visitation. I cannot express adequately my gratitude at your amazingly generous response to the call to contribute Mercy Bags to the poor. As of Monday, we have received over 422 Mercy Bags! That figure does not even include the Mercy Bags that we have yet to receive from Visitation School. Such overwhelming generosity is what I have come to learn is the norm for our community. Time and again, when asked to support the poor, rather than turning away from the need, or understandably, passing on the effort due to fatigue from repeated requests for help, you have always responded to the call. The Mercy Bag response in just one example. Another is how much help you are giving to the poor parishes and schools of the archdiocese through Together in Mission. Another is, here in Visitation, how generous you have been in contributing to our
ordinary Sunday collection.
We will be sending these bags to the St. Margaret Center for distribution to the homeless and destitute. The last Sunday of each month we will be adding the making of Mercy Bags in addition to our usual collecting of food for the Center.
I am so thankful to you all. Believe me, I always feel a bit awkward having to ask you for money or other help, either for the parish or the poor. Yet you always step forward and follow the words of Jesus, “Whatever you do for the least of my brothers and sisters, you do to me.” I thank you. I thank you. I thank you.