A Message from Pastor Kaji

March 30th,2023 Categories: Weekly Letter

Dear Church,

First, let me express my deep gratitude for your support and words of congratulations for the win in my lawsuit against DHS, CBP and ICE. It’s a precedent-setting win that will help the helpers, and I’m full of joy and awe. We serve an awesome God!It has been such a joy walking through this Lenten season together. This Sunday, we step into Jesus’ passion for us. Every year, I’m overwhelmed by the goodness of God. Walking through this story together is crisp and effective in drawing us closer to Jesus. I do hope that you will join us for all of our services in Holy Week, including this Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday online, Good Friday with the Jesuits at St. Ignatius Loyola, where I will be preaching on Jesus’ Last Word: “Abba: into your hands, I commend my spirit.” I’m honored to be in their pulpit again for this deeply meaningful service of devotion. We conclude Holy Week with Resurrection Sunday, where C. Anthony Bryant has a full celebration ready for us!

I do hope that you will set the intention and spiritual commitment to be present for all of these important markers of our spiritual life. And please do come – in person – for Resurrection Sunday!

I can’t wait to see you and walk Jesus’ path from life to death to renewed life, together.

Pax Christi,
Pastor Kaji

Scripture: Mark 14:32-62 (Year A, p. 192-193):

32 Jesus and his disciples went to a place called Gethsemane and he said to his disciples, “You all sit here while I pray.” 33 He took with him Peter and James and John and began to be deeply moved and distressed. 34 And said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; you all stay here, and stay awake.” 35 And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed that, if possible, the hour might pass from him. 36 He said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you; remove this cup from me; yet, not what I want, but what you do.” 37 Jesus came and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, “Simon, are you sleeping? Could you not stay awake one hour? 38 Stay awake and pray that you all may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 39 And again he went away and prayed, saying the same thing. 40 And once more he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy; and they did not know what to say to him. 41 Jesus came a third time and said to them, “Are you all sleeping, still, and taking your rest? Enough! The hour has come. Look! The Son of Woman is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42 Get up, let us go. See, my betrayer is at hand.”

43 And instantly, while he was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived; with him there was a crowd with swords and clubs from the chief priests, the religious scholars, and the elders. 44 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I kiss is he; seize him and lead him away safely.” 45 Then when Judas came, he went up to Jesus immediately and said, “Rabbi!” and kissed him. 46 Then they laid hands on him and took him. 47 But one of the bystanders drew his sword and struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his ear. 48 Then Jesus said to them, “Is it as for a bandit you all have come out with swords and clubs to seize me? 49 Daily I was with you all in the temple teaching, and you did not seize me. But let the scriptures be fulfilled.” 50 All of them deserted him and fled. 51 A certain young man was following Jesus, with just a fine cloth on his naked flesh. They caught hold of him, 52 but he forsook the fine cloth and ran off naked.]

53 They took Jesus to the high priest; and they assembled all the chief priests, the elders, and the religious scholars. 54 Now Peter followed him from afar into the courtyard of the high priest and was sitting with the attendants, warming himself at the fire. 55 Now the chief priests and the whole council sought testimony against Jesus to put him to death but found none. 56 For many gave false testimony against him, yet their testimony did not agree. 57 Some rose and gave false testimony against him, saying, 58 “Well, we heard him say, ‘I will destroy this hand-made temple, and in three days I will build another, that is not hand-made.’ ” 59 But even on this point their testimony did not agree. 60 Then the high priest stood up before them and said to Jesus, “No response? What are they testifying against you?” 61 But he was silent and answered nothing. Again, the high priest spoke to him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” 62 Jesus said, “I am; and

‘you will see the Son of Woman
seated at the right hand of the Power,’
and ‘coming with the clouds of heaven.’”