Faith often requires us to acknowledge the true power of God and admit that we are not the center of the universe. When we are not mindful of these realities, we easily succumb to the temptation to focus on our will and not the will of God. Many wonderful things can come to pass in our lives if only we can allow God in to heal, love, and lead us. Truly, none of us are worthy of the many gifts offered to us by God, especially the gift of the Incarnation, Jesus Christ. However, if we allow God to be God and let go of our pride and selfishness, we can find ourselves transformed.
Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b, 64:2-7
1 Corinthians 1:3-9
“What could happen next?” How many times have you asked yourself that question? Unfortunately, we most often use that expression when things don’t seem to be going our way. Then when the stars seem to align just right we might use the same expression to explain our feelings of being overwhelmed by blessings and good things.
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe
One day when I was walking the city streets where I was giving a series of talks, I saw what appeared to be an older woman hunched over with a sign asking for help. At first I passed her, on my way to visit the local drugstore. But then I came back around when I realized I had not been very mindful upon first seeing her. I didn’t have much cash to give her, but as I always tell everyone else in my talks, often times what people need more than cash is someone to at least acknowledge them. I reached into my pocket to give her what little I had and I simply said, “Hello. I hope you are okay and I hope you can use this.”
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
I remember watching a television show about a high school that dug up a time capsule students had buried 25 years earlier. They had buried it with the purpose of showing others many years later the trends of the day and how student life was at that time. It was a fun exercise and everyone, the current students as well as those now grown, laughed at the clothing styles, corny photos, and lack of technology from years ago.
Advent begins December 3 this year and it will be here before we know it! Advent is a time of preparation for Christmas, but it can only be fruitful if we spend some time preparing for the preparation. Here are just 4 things we can do now to ensure that on the first Sunday of Advent our parishes and our people are ready.
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
For all I know this Everyday Stewardship reflection is the last one you will ever read. That’s not because I fear you will no longer get something out of reading these. At least, I hope not! It is because Jesus may very well return by this time next week. Then there will be no more need for reflections like these in bulletins, on websites, or wherever else you are reading this. You think the odds are against this happening in the next few days? I can gamble from time to time, but I guess this is not something I am willing to say won’t happen for sure. We do believe Jesus will come again, don’t we?
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time
Over the years we have had many great social events in parish community. We have had socials for New Year’s Eve, St. Patrick’s Day, Mardi Gras, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Valentine’s Day, and so many more. It seems we will use any excuse to have a party and enjoy each other’s company. And for more than the last decade, my pastor has been present at most of these events. What always tickles me is to see him in his clerics going around with a tray of entrees or desserts as he seeks to serve his parishioners. We have joked that his clothing does resemble that of a waiter in a fine restaurant. The only difference is no tips! Sorry, Monsignor.
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Feast of All Saints
I remember attending Catholic School growing up and every year having to write a report on a saint. We were told that these people of faith were role models for us in our Christian journey. Even though they were real people, they always seemed to me to be larger than life. When I was younger I never thought I could become just like them. Now that I am older, I realize that we are all in fact called to be just like them.
Holiness is not something reserved for those in a book of saints. It is the goal of all intentional disciples living as good stewards. However, it takes commitment to achieve holiness. It also requires us to live mindfully and be continually aware of how God is moving in our lives.
You may never have thought about a stewardship way of life as a pathway to sainthood, but if you take the time to read the lives of saints you will see how these heroes truly cultivated the gifts God had given them and gave them back with increase to God. You will encounter stories of outreach to the poor, comforting the distressed, and befriending the lonely. And you will begin to see the parallel between what these great disciples did in their lives with the simple responses to God’s call in your life. The Church may never formally canonize you, but there will be those whose paths you cross that will bear witness to the fact that at least – for a moment – they caught a glimpse of what could have been a living saint.
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time
I read an interesting article about how tolerance has become a substitute for love. As Christians we often talk about tolerance toward others when truly the call of Jesus Christ is to love others, not simply tolerant them. The truth is tolerance is a lot easier than love.
An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Many years ago, during faith formation in my parish, one of the children wrote something that wasn’t very nice on a textbook that belonged to someone else. Being the pastoral associate who oversaw the program, I began the investigation immediately. Slowly I began eliminating suspects until it became obvious who was the perpetrator. He denied he was the one, but after much pressure he broke down and confessed. Of course, I derived no satisfaction from finding out the culprit. Of course, it was my own son.