A Letter from Fr. Paul – June 19, 2016
There were no additions this week to the collection ($3,675) for our sister parish. If you have not yet contributed, please do so within the next week, after which we will send the money to Guatemala.
In terms of the Catholic Stewardship Appeal, 14.5% of our families have contributed $10,808 or 43% of our goal for 2016. Please consider supporting this appeal, if you have not yet done so.
We see those who sell scrip at Mass and in the office, but a humongous amount of work is done behind the scenes by Christal SanFelippo and Karen Manning. We thank them and those who help with the selling of scrip for their dedication and service.
Our Gospel story appears in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Jesus asks, “Who do people say that I am?” He then asks the disciples what THEY think and Peter responds, “You are the Messiah, the Son of God.” This is a turning point in the Gospel presentation of the life of Jesus: it answers the question “who is this man?” After Jesus is identified as the Messiah, the question turns to what KIND of Messiah. The Jews expected a King who would defeat enemies; instead they received a humble pacifist who told them to “love your enemies.”
The Jews who listened to Jesus talk, even his 12 disciples, had trouble accepting what he was saying: they wanted power, to be #1! Jesus was saying the opposite: make yourselves the least and serve others. Sometimes we still have trouble accepting what Jesus is calling us to. We cannot disregard others, we cannot fear and hate those who are different, we cannot protect our own needs while ignoring those in need, and convince ourselves that we are following the path of Jesus. It is easier to reduce being a disciple to obeying laws and fulfilling rituals while ignoring the law of love. But if we do, we are not truly accepting what Jesus has taught us. I invite us to reflect this week on how well we are living out the law of love.
This week we will have our Salvatorian Family Assembly, a coming together of committed lay members, sisters, brothers and priests from all over the United States (and a few visitors from around the world, including our Superior General, Fr. Milton Zonta). The assembly is held every 3 or 4 years, depending on what is happening in terms of other meetings. This year it will be at Sacred Heart School of Theology. While I will celebrate the morning Masses here at Pius, I will be gone from Monday afternoon through Friday. Please pray that those of us attending may grow in our ability to bring “the goodness and kindness of our Lord” to the world around us (our Salvatorian charism).
-- Paul James Portland, SDS
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