March 26, 2017 – June 25, 2017
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March 26, 2017 - 4th Sunday of Lent
“Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance but the Lord looks into the heart.” 1 SAMUEL 16:7
How often do we invest our time, talent and treasure in creating an appearance that does not matter at all to God? We strive to impress with our clothing, home, career, possessions, car and other marks of distinction. But none of these illusions of greatness will impress God. Instead, He will look into our hearts to see how much we loved Him, how much we loved others and how we showed that love by the way we used our time, talents and treasure here on earth.
April 2, 2017- 5th Sunday of Lent
“Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believe you will see the glory of God?” JOHN 11:40
Many of us say that we believe in God. We go to church on Sunday. We volunteer for events at our parish. But when life gets hard, the pressure is on, things aren’t going our way, do we really believe, do we really put our trust in the Lord? When we live a life of gratitude, being thankful for the gifts we have been given, we really do see that God is providing all that we need.
April 9, 2017-Palm Sunday
“As they were marching out, they came upon a man of Cyrene, Simon by name; this man they pressed into service to carry his cross.” MATTHEW 27:32
The Lord calls us to love God and to love our neighbor. Every day we are presented with opportunities to love our neighbor and help him “carry his cross”. These opportunities aren’t usually big events, they are usually ordinary occurrences like helping someone carry their groceries or holding the door open for them. The key is putting the other person’s needs before our own and not expecting anything in return.
April 16, 2017-Easter Sunday
“Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” COLOSSIANS 3:2
Do you put God first in all things? Possessions, money, power, ego can easily become gods to many of us. Do a quick check of what is important to you. Is God at the very top of the list? If not, your priorities need to be re-adjusted. Don’t let earthly things become a god before God.
April 23, 2017-2nd Sunday of Easter
“Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’” JOHN 20:19
Are you good at making people feel welcome? When you meet someone new, a new neighbor, a new work colleague, a new parishioner, do you make them feel at home? Many of us can probably do a much better job at this. When we make people feel welcome, we make them feel like they are included instead of being excluded. A simple “hello” and a smile goes a long way.
April 30, 2017-3rd Sunday of Easter
“Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked to us on the road, while He opened to us the scriptures?” LUKE 24:32
How often do we take the time to discern what Jesus wants from us? Are our prayers always petitions, asking Jesus to do things for us? If so, that’s a one-sided relationship. Living our faith means developing a personal relationship with Jesus. Just like any friendship, there is give and take, each side listening to each other and helping each other out. Take time in silence to listen to what Jesus is asking of you.
May 7, 2017-4th Sunday of Easter
“And Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ…” ACTS 2:38
The word “repent” means to turn from sin, to change our actions. When it comes to change, do we take responsibility for change or do we think that others have to change instead? Change that is permanent comes from within, we must take control and be disciplined. Remember though that we are not alone, Jesus is there to help lighten the load.
May 14, 2017-5th Sunday of Easter
“The stone which the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” 1 PETER 2:7
Everyone is given unique gifts. Many people are able to recognize their talents and abilities, but there are many people who are unsure of their gifts. This may make them feel worthless. If you know someone who is struggling for a direction in life, give them a little encouragement. Help them discern how they might use their skills. No gift is too small or insignificant.
May 21, 2017-6th Sunday of Easter
“For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that be God’s will, than for doing evil.” 1 PETER 3:17
The old line says “if you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” Many of us are diligent in our planning, making sure things are progressing smoothly, then disaster strikes, we don’t get the result that was intended. An unforeseen problem arises. Many times we may respond negatively. Why me? I did everything right! Here’s the thing – God has a different and better plan in store for you.
May 28, 2017-7th Sunday of Easter
“I am praying for them…” JOHN 17: 9
Prayer is the foundation of our Faith and the foundation of Stewardship. Pray in good times and in bad. Prayer is always the first best option in any situation, not just the last resort. Pray for friends and family and for those that don’t treat you very well. Pray to give praise, to thank and to ask God for help. Pray to see what God wants you to do with the gifts He has given you.
June 4, 2017-Pentecost Sunday
“To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” 1 CORINTHIANS 12:7
To receive the gift of the Holy Spirit you must open your heart and let Him in! Open your heart and be grateful for all the gifts God has given us. Regardless of your circumstance, God has given us all blessings. What we do with those gifts is our gift back to God. Generously sharing our gifts keeps us more “God-centered” and less “self-centered”.
June 11, 2017-Most Holy Trinity
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…” JOHN 3:16
Is your love conditional? Is there a price others have to pay to receive your love? Are you generous with your time, money and possessions? If you give someone something, do you expect something in return? Do you give your time freely or do you “fit it in” when it’s convenient for you? Pray for a grateful and generous heart.
June 18, 2017-Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi)
“Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread.” 1 CORINTHIANS 10:17
As disciples of Jesus, we are called to lead holy lives and invite others to join us. Living a stewardship lifestyle, being grateful and generous with our gifts, serves a twofold purpose. One, it helps build God’s kingdom here on earth. Two, it is a road map to Heaven. Let’s help each other get there!
June 25, 2017-12th Sunday of Ordinary Times
“Everyone who acknowledges me before others I will acknowledge before my heavenly Father.” MATTHEW 10:32
Do you share your Catholic faith with others? Do you defend your Catholic faith or do you remain silent when the situation arises? Do you pray in public before meals? Pray for the strength and courage to be a joyful witness of our Catholic faith when the opportunity presents itself.