I write this message from Heartwood, Trego, WI. I am with other priests from our Diocese for our annual retreat. Our retreat master Fr. Paul Lickteig SJ is our retreat master who talks about Ignatian Spirituality. He asked us to meditate on three questions. They are: 1. What have I done for Christ? 2. What am I doing for Christ? 3. What ought I to do for Christ?
The first Sunday of September, Immaculate Conception celebrated Catechetical Sunday and this weekend St. Anthony and St. Francis are celebrating. This year the theme for Catechetical Sunday is "Enlisting Witnesses for Jesus Christ." I thought those three questions can be asked in the context of Catechetical Sunday too. As a priest, deacon, CRE, catechist, parent, grandparent, whatever our role, the above questions are relevant. I think we can add one more question: how do we share our faith with our young people?
I would like to borrow a thought from Fr. Bloom. He writes, many years ago, in England, three men were pouring into a trough a mixture of water, sand, lime and other ingredients. A passer-by asked them what they were doing. The first said, "I am making mortar." The second: "I am laying bricks." But the third said, "I am building a cathedral." They were doing the same thing, but each looked at it differently. And what a difference that made! We can see something similar in the way people relate to their parish, why they give. One person says, "Oh! All they do down there is ask for money." The second person replies, "Well, you have to pay the bills." But the third person says, "I am building the Body of Christ."
We are entrusted with Good News to spread in the world. Catechetical Sunday is a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the role that each person plays, by virtue of Baptism, in handing on the faith and being a witness to the Gospel. Catechetical Sunday is an opportunity to rededicate ourselves to this mission as a community of faith.
I encourage everyone to find time for Mass every weekend and encourage our young people to come with you. Second, try to attend more than weekend Mass, if you can make it to a weekday Mass. On September 19, we have a Blue Mass to honor all current and retired law enforcement, firefighters, EMTs, and First Responders in the area.
The weekend of September 22 and 23rd we have dynamic speaker Dr. Mario Joseph. He will be speaking during Mass and there will be an hour session after the 9:30 Mass on 23rd. He was a Muslim priest and converted to Catholicism. It is an amazing story.
On September 26 at 6:30pm we have a one man performance of the Sermon on the Mount performed by Frank Runyeon
This is another opportunity to grow in faith: just sign in on your computer or cell phone for FORMED.ORG . Click on access code and enter the code for our parish GB88X. Through the generosity of our people and parish participation, we have purchased this website for a year. Please make use of it as there are tons of faith resources. You can watch a movie or documentary, reflect on weekend readings, and so on. Let us make use of this opportunity to grow in our faith. Let this Catechetical Sunday bring new beginnings in our faith community and let us thank each other, pray for each other, and support each other in our faith journey.