People sometimes think evangelization means being very forward about our faith and “preachy” as they say. Sometimes, a situation does call for a very direct and forthright message, but most of the time our call is to share the Gospel in simple yet profound ways.
There is almost too much going on with all the Advent devotions and practices that seem to take a back seat to shopping and preparing for the gift giving traditions of Christmas. After all, Black Friday starts on Thanksgiving in the retail stores and has already started online.
In the midst of all our preparation and celebration let us turn to the one who gives life through the sacrifice of love–Jesus.
If you live in the US, during this week there will be constant attempts to hijack your mind and heart. You will be told that if you do not get to a certain store at 4 a.m. you will miss the greatest deal of your lifetime. But don’t make shopping, football, or overeating the main thing. Make giving thanks the main thing.
It would be kind of awesome to be a king or queen! Absolute rule, untold wealth, and people answering your every beck and call are things that wouldn’t be half bad. Of course, I would be a benevolent monarch and I would hope that all my subjects would love me. They could cheer me as a came out of the palace and I think my popularity ratings in the polls would be through the roof
When I replay the events of the day in my head, my biggest regrets seem to be the unguarded moments when I offered an opinion or comment that was not necessary and could have possibly caused confusion or pain. Why did I need to say that? Did any good come of it? Or, was it something that needed to be said but I simply said it at the wrong time?
When I was younger I was so intrigued by movies like The Omen and The Final Conflict and others that told stories of the end times and an Anti-Christ person that would usher in the second coming.
Too bad every one of those movies misses the point.
Advent can be challenging time for many to enter into. It is too easy to let Advent mark the beginning of the end of year rush. Too many times I have come to the first Sunday of Advent mass and appreciated the beautifully decorated sanctuary, colorful candles, incense, new music and fresh homilies, without preparing my heart or mind for the short journey ahead. By week two or three I realize I haven’t done anything to really get the most out of it, and now it’s almost over!
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Catholics who attend daily Mass come across interesting feasts all the time: unknown saints and martyrs, various titles for Jesus and Our Lady, the Chair of St. Peter. One of the most interesting feasts you might encounter is the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica each November.
Our treasure is an extremely powerful gift from God that can change lives for the better or destroy them. It can never be ignored. And because money holds such a prominent place in human life, what we choose to do with it directly reflects our understanding of what it means to be a good steward and disciple of Jesus Christ.
We all have people in our family that we wish would turn to the Lord and let him carry their burden. On this All Souls’ Day, Tracy Welliver reflects on his father and speaks to all of you who have lost someone in the year since last All Souls Day, may you find solace in a God who not only cares, but One that calls us His own.