Saint Matthew's Church, Voorheesville New York Home   |   Contact   |   Directions

25 Mountainview Street
Voorheesville, New York 12186
Phone (518) 765-2805
Fax (518) 765-3701

Our Mission Statement
Our Mission Statement

The Pastor's weekly message

Several years after I was ordained deacon Bill Gaffney asked me what my favorite Gospel was. I told him it was the Gospel of Mark. He asked "Why?". I said because it had a very human Jesus, one with whom I could relate and sympathize. "And your least favorite?", Bill asked. I said, "The Gospel of St. John because it can so easily be misunderstood and used inappropriately to convince people of things that are simply not true." Bill said that as I got older I would learn to appreciate John's Gospel much more. That has been true. I still believe that John's Gospel is often misunderstood by many. But now I also see the immense richness in what has often been called "the spiritual Gospel".

This Sunday is no exception. Some Greeks want to meet Jesus so they find Philip, a Jesus follower, he goes and finds Andrew, and they bring the Greeks to Jesus. But Jesus' "answer" has nothing to do with them or their request. Some scholars think that is because the Gospel cannot be preached to the Gentiles (Greeks and other non-Jews) until after Jesus' death and resurrection. I am not sure. But what I am sure of is that John's Gospel is filled with these kinds of mysteries. It is a Gospel that keeps inviting the reader more and more deeply into understanding and experiencing what believing in Jesus might really mean for us and for all his followers.

For example, as we read on this Sunday Jesus tells us that he is troubled now, so should he ask God to save him from this hour? No, Jesus decides, because it was for this hour that he came. This hour, the cross and resurrection hour when Jesus will set us all free from sin and death and save the world. John has Jesus go on to say that when he is lifted up from the earth(on the cross?), he will draw everyone to himself. Was he speaking to those Greeks (and us) all along? Were we simply being invited to "hang in there and listen more deeply to hear of God's immense love for us, for everyone? Is John still inviting all his readers to see that God has indeed, in Jesus Christ, come for the whole world, for everyone, and not just for Christians and Jews?

Deacon Bill Gaffney was right. You have to be older and just a bit wiser to begin to appreciate John's Gospel. Easter and the Easter season gives us that opportunity. Throughout this season we will be reading the "Spiritual Gospel". Listen carefully and ponder deeply. John invites us all into places we have yet to explore.

Fr. Chris

Mass Schedule
Saturday Vigil at 5:00 PM
Sunday at 8:30 and 10:30 AM
Tues, Wed, and Fri at 8:30 AM
Rosary and Novena
Monday at 6:30 PM
(September through May)
Reconciliation
Saturday at 4:00 PM
(or by appointment)
Office Hours
Monday - Friday 9 AM to 3 PM