When the English historian Christopher Dawson decided to become a Roman Catholic, his aristocratic mother was distraught, not because of Catholic teaching, but because now her son would, in her words, have to “worship with the help.” His background would no longer set him apart from others or above anyone. At church he would be just an equal among equals because the Eucharist would strip him of his higher social status. It was this very thing that first drew Dorothy Day to Christianity. During the Eucharist, she noticed the rich and the poor knelt side by side; all humbled before the great gift of Christ. Around the Eucharistic table what Mary prophesized in her Magnificat came to be, that, in Jesus, the mighty would be brought down and that lowly would be raised up. Continue reading Eucharist and Justice
…from Pam Ferron, Director of Parish Life & Communications
“WHERE IS MY WHITE TANK TOP?”
“Why would I know?”
“BECAUSE I LET YOU BORROW IT!”
Have you heard a similar “conversation” in your house? Probably, if you have two teenage girls (yes, I’m stereotyping, but growing up with two sisters and having two daughters, it is what I know. Maybe boys argue just as much over clothes, hmmm?). As a mother, what is our role? Stop the argument, try to get the siblings to have a rational conversation (good luck with that!), ignore it?
My mom always did a good job of being a peacemaker, and I’m fortunate that my mother is still living and continues to be a wonderful example for me. She was not just the peacemaker, but she was also the one who helped us with our homework, fed us, encouraged us when we struggled, forgave us when we misbehaved, loved us even when we weren’t that lovable. Hmmm, who does that sound like? Continue reading What To Do?
Several weeks ago I wrote “Not yet…” an article that acknowledged Pope Francis’ new apostolic exhortation, the Joy of Love – and noted that I was glad people were asking me about it, but I needed time to read it, re-read it, and think about it. I can report that I have now read it, have re-read parts of it, and am still thinking about. What I can offer at this point is some thoughts from here and there – and offer them cautiously at that. Continue reading Still working on it…
It is said that you can tell a lot about a person by their hands. The common wisdom is that a person’s self-image is revealed in the manner in which they shake hands. One of the oft-told stories in my family is when my then college-aged niece brought home a young man to meet the family and her grandmother. We were all greeted by the “dead-fish handshake,” a weak hello, and eyes cast to one side. The family advice was uniform: dump him. My niece thought we were all a bit judgmental. Perhaps, but let’s just say it was an occasion where experience met prudence. The handshake told us almost everything we needed to know. Several weeks later, our niece came to the same assessment. Continue reading Hands
The Way Its Always Been? Parishes hired children’s faith formation directors and educators who trained catechists in order to ensure that the parish could provide first-rate faith formation to their children. While this shift told families that churches care about children by having amazing programs, it also told parents that they don’t have to worry about instilling faith in their kids. The implied message is: “Send your kids to us to be formed in faith.”
But the problem is that one effect of this shift has been the erosion of the family as the place where faith formation has happened for centuries and centuries. The family should be the primary place where children learn to follow Jesus. This is consistent with what we proclaim in the Baptismal Liturgy: the parents are the child’s first and ultimately most important teacher, especially when it comes to faith formation. Continue reading The Buzz: Family Faith Formation
The weekend of April 30th and May 1st, the young people of our parish will celebrate their First Holy Communion. The children will celebrate this important sacrament as part of the community. Some of the children will be present with their families at each the weekend celebrations. Congratulations to all!!
As a liturgical season, Lent is rather straightforward. It is kinda’ easy to write about. There is Ash Wednesday to dramatically mark its beginning, and we all know we are moving relentlessly towards Easter. We count the days even as we mark Lent’s beginning. The Ashes make a visible mark upon us, reminding us that we are dust and to dust we shall return – but that is not the end of the story. We are reminded to repent and believe in the Gospel – but that is not the end goal. We are encouraged to pray, fast, and give alms – but those practices are meant to make room in our lives for God that we too may rise to the newness of life at Eastertide. Continue reading Easter Ongoing…
Good Pope Francis has declared a Jubilee Year of Mercy to begin on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception this December 8th . In Judaism and Christianity, the Jubilee is a special year of remission of sins, forgiving debts, and reconciling broken relationships. It is a year in which the people of God are asked to especially make manifest the mercy of God. So maybe, here at the beginning, it is a good time to think about the meaning of “mercy.” Continue reading Thinking about Mercy
But for many of us, this is not the ultimate reality.
There is too much pain and suffering in the world today.
Death has the last word.
It would therefore be foolish to say that the life and death of a first century Jew named Jesus makes a difference.
Why? Might makes right, Power is superior to compassion, and Despair is stronger than hope.
So I refuse to believe a man can come back from the dead.
Sometimes the most important facts are the hardest to accept.
Resurrection is a false hope. Continue reading Easter is Coming