We are at the beginning of Catholic Schools Week. Wauwatosa Catholic School does a wonderful job of challenging our students academically with the International Baccalaureate Program, while helping them understand and grow in their Catholic faith. The I.B. Learner Profile (such as caring, principled, and reflective) supports and encourages our Gospel values. I encourage you to consider our school for your children and encourage others to do so, also. I thank our principal, Lori Suarez, and all of our teachers and staff for their excellent ministry.
Last weekend I introduced “Salvatorian Sunday,” an appeal to financially support the efforts of the Society of the Divine Savior, which has staffed St. Pius X since its beginning. Envelopes are in the pews or you can donate online through Pius’ website. Please be as generous as you can.
Our Gospel this weekend presents Matthew’s version of the beginning of Jesus’ active ministry, touched off by the arrest of John the Baptist. And almost immediately He calls his four main apostles; Peter, Andrew, James, and John. The presentation is dramatic: Jesus sees them, He calls them, and they leave everything to follow Him. It sounds so total and complete that we can be left feeling that it has nothing to do with our ongoing, personal struggle to respond to the call to follow Christ.
But, look at the reality: those men also had a long struggle to grow into being true followers of Jesus. They argued over who was the most important, John and James had their mother ask for a special place for them, they wanted to send people away rather than feed them, they fell asleep instead of praying with Jesus in Gethsemane, Peter denied Jesus three times, etc. They struggled, as do we, to grow in their ability to be true disciples of Jesus. But they made it. I don’t think the four men would have been able to travel over the whole known world preaching the Gospel and accept martyrdom those first days after Jesus called them: they needed to grow.
The point to us is that we, too, are called to be fishers of people, to bring people to the Lord by the way we live our lives. It is a process; we will never get it perfect. But if we follow Jesus (read scripture, listen reflectively to homilies, spend quiet time talking with the Lord, take advantage of faith formation opportunities), His Spirit will help us grow in our ability to be true disciples.
Reflection for the week: am I growing as a disciple? Do I spend enough time talking with the Lord and listening to His word to give His Spirit a chance to guide me? What is one practical change I can make in my life to do better? And let us support each other in prayer