Gifts to the Church → the Season of Giving
We are currently in what some call the “season of giving.” This is the
period starting just before the Thanksgiving holiday extending through January 1. This is called the season of giving because it is during this time each year that our minds recall what we should be thankful for. We, of course, are thankful for many things: for our farmers, who have harvested their crops to provide us with the food we eat – the bounty of the earth. We are thankful for Advent, a season of preparation for the gift of our Savior, Jesus Christ, who died for our sins and rose from the dead to lead us to the Father. We are thankful for our religious freedom – the freedom to worship as we choose and the freedom to practice our religion and freely exercise our religious beliefs. We are thankful for our local church, our pastor, and all the ministers and others who assist and make meaningful the liturgies offered on a daily and weekly basis. These, to name just a few…
I would like to make two points. The first addresses our religious freedom. I would ask that each of you, with a properly formed conscience, do what you can to protect religious freedom in the United States. We, as Catholics, and all Christians for that matter have much at stake… Do not be misled by the rhetoric that is bandied about by politicians stating that the health care bill in its present form permits religious freedom. The Catholic bishops who have studied this law say it still does not. Do not be misled into believing that gay marriage is OK. It is not. Do not be misled into thinking that abortion is an acceptable evil. It is not. It is the killing of innocent human beings. It is imperative that all Catholics stand united and do what we can to preserve and protect life and our religious freedom. We must not just stand idle.
The second point addresses evangelization or inviting others to our parish. Please encourage your Catholic friends and neighbors who attend surrounding churches and especially those who no longer attend Mass at all to come back and worship here at St. Mary’s. Share with them that we miss them and would very much welcome their return. Tell them about Fr. Perfecto, our new pastor. A personal invitation from you is the only way this will work. Therefore, I challenge each of you to invite ONE person or family back!
Thank you and may God bless you abundantly for freely sharing your gifts of time, talent & treasure with your parish.
I wish you all a Blessed and Merry Christmas!