I thank those parishioners who attended the Mass, dinner, and concert by Fr. Joseph Rodrigues SDS last weekend as the Society of the Divine Savior celebrated 125 years of presence in the United States. I was proud of all our choir members who participated in the Mass. The Salvatorians founded St. Pius X and members of the Salvatorian Family have shared their talents over the 65 years of our existence. I appreciated the support shown by your presence.
There are three upcoming events that I invite you to attend: first, at 6:30 pm on Monday, September 25, there will be a presentation given by Samantha El-Azem, our Director of Formation for Children, on Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. As I have shared before, we will be gradually moving to this method, which is Montessori inspired. This is an opportunity to understand what is involved in this highly acclaimed method of passing on the Faith to our children. The meeting will be in the North Hall at Christ King.
Second, Tuesday evening, September 26, there will be an open house for parishioners at our school, Wauwatosa Catholic, from 6 to 7 pm. This IS our school: I am the one ultimately responsible for it from the perspective of the Archdiocese. We support it with time, talent, and treasure. Just walking the hallways and seeing the displays on the walls will help you understand the wonderful combination of Catholic and International Baccalaureate values that our children are being exposed to.
Third, a tri-parish retreat for leaders and parishioners will be held at Christ King Friday evening, October 13, and Saturday, October 14, until mid-afternoon. I am hoping staff and members of all councils, commissions, or committees will attend, as well as many parishioners. More information will be coming but save the dates!
Professional yoga instructor and parishioner Mary Snow will offer free yoga classes here at Pius on Monday mornings at 9 am, beginning October 9th. Please watch for more details and plan to take advantage of this opportunity.
The annual collection for our sister parish is this weekend. If you missed it, we will wait a couple weeks to close it. Put your donation in an envelope marked “sister parish” and drop it in the regular collection. Please be as generous as possible.
Perhaps the series of readings we are going through during this part of Ordinary time can be summarized with these words of Isaiah in our first reading this weekend: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD. As high as the heavens are above the earth, so high are my ways above your ways and my thoughts above your thoughts.
In our Gospel two weekends ago Jesus said it was the wrong or grieved party that had the responsibility to reach out and start the process of reconciliation. Would we think that way? Or would we think, “That person hurt me; they should say they are sorry and ask for forgiveness”? Which do we have to do to follow Jesus?
Last weekend we were told to forgive an innumerable number of times. We cannot hold resentments and grudges and be at peace with God – or ourselves. Would we think that way? Or would we think, “Hurt me once, shame on you. Hurt me twice, shame on me”? Which do we have to do to follow Jesus?
Now we have that crazy story about the one working one hour being paid the same as one who worked all day! Jesus is saying that, for justice to reign, each person needs to be able to get their “daily bread” to feed their family. Do we think that way? Or would we think, “That is not fair. The one who worked only an hour should only be paid for an hour, no matter if the family is hungry”? Which do we have to do to follow Jesus?
Underlying all this is the tension between our concept of “fairness” and the Gospel values of justice, mercy, and compassion. There is no doubt the world would be better if Gospel values were followed; it is our task to further that ideal by doing our best to live according to the Gospel values of justice, mercy, and compassion. Let us resolve to grow in mercy and compassion, supporting each other in our efforts with prayer.
-- Paul James Portland, SDS