July 2, 2023

Dear Parishioners of Saint Polycarp,

Greetings and peace always in the Lord Jesus. Hospitality and kindness are virtues that we are called to live and to practice. Since my arrival to this beautiful family of Saint Polycarp, you never cease to shower me and my brother priests with your hospitality and kindness. You accept and welcome us as members of your family. I remember vividly the moment I reached the doorsteps of Saint Polycarp, Fathers Michael, Tuan, Luis, Msgr. Steve, and all of you welcomed me like a brother and a son to your spiritual home.

As I begin my fourth year as pastor, I am humbled and grateful for your kindness, because I often receive many beautiful compliments from our visiting priests and parishioners about your warm welcome and kindness. I also hear from Father Nicolas that he enjoys your hospitality and love.

Hospitality and kindness are well expressed in this Thirteenth Sunday readings. In the First Reading, the prophet Elisha was warmly welcomed to dine by a Shunammite woman. Her hospitality was richly rewarded with a promise from God through Elisha that the same time next year she would bear a son (cf 2Kings 4: 8-11, 14-16). Her hospitality and kindness reflect exactly what Jesus proclaims in today’s Gospel: “Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me. Whoever receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man will receive a righteous man’s reward” (Mt 10: 40-42).

The late Pope Benedict XVI in his encyclical Deus Caritas est reminds and encourages us to live our lives with kindness and charity, for God in His kindness and love has given Himself to us in the person of Jesus Christ.

On this first week of July, our Saint Polycarp family welcomes and receives Father Saúl Alba-Infante as our Parochial Vicar. Please join me to welcome him to our spiritual family. Know that your love and support encourage us priests to faithfully serve you with a single mind and heart.

May God bless and grant you health and love. Happy Independence Day. May God bless our country! Thank you for your love and support of us priests.

Father Viet Peter Ho

Father Nicolas T. Nguyen

Deacons Ramiro, Larry, and Tri

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