Please remember our Lenten reflection/adoration Tuesday evening, March 12, at 7 pm in the church. And nominations are still open for one trustee and four pastoral council members.
I have received an e-mail from Padre Fernando, the pastor of our sister parish, saying they are using our donation from last year to remodel the multi-purpose room of the main parish. From the pictures he sent, I can see that it is needed. He thanked us again and said they were offering a special Mass for our intentions.
Our first reading from Deuteronomy presents being generous as the proper response to what God has given us. The Lord had called the Israelites, led them from slavery, forgiven them when they wandered, and given them the promised land. Their response was to offer their first fruits in gratitude (the origin of tithing).
In the Gospel we hear Luke’s version of the temptations Jesus experienced after his baptism. They were temptations to be self-centered, to use his gifts in a selfish way, the opposite of being generous. The message for us is to grow in showing gratitude for the time, treasure, and talent that the Lord has given us by being more and more generous.
To help us grow, Lent calls us to increased fasting, almsgiving, and prayer. The fasting helps us move out of ourselves, to be less self-indulgent; the almsgiving goes a step further, asking us to reach out and use the gifts we have been given for others; since both of those are difficult, building a stronger relationship with the Lord through prayer will hopefully give us the help and strength that we will need.
My prayer is that we all take this time of self-reflection and spiritual growth seriously, using the booklets the community has provided to help us pray individually and as a family, as well as participating in the various spiritual activities that have been planned. Hope to see you Tuesday evening at the Lenten reflection. And let us support each other in prayer.
-- Paul James Portland, SDS