20th Sunday in Ordinary Time
It's proven that generosity makes for a happier person; generosity springs from gratitude - to the degree that we're thankful for the gifts we've been given in life, we have a desire to share these gifts with others. Thankfulness and generosity, though, are two virtues that you will not be challenged to grow in by popular culture, but they are two virtues at the heart of what it means to be Christian - the more thankful and generous we are, the more we become like our Maker!
This weekend is the kickoff for our annual diocesan Catholic Services Appeal (CSA). The CSA provides so many incredible opportunities to spread the faith of Jesus Christ in northwestern Wisconsin - for our seminarians, for our youth, for our schools, for our parishes - opportunities that I witness and see the fruits of firsthand! I'm challenging you this year to stretch yourself in thankfulness and generosity (in all senses of those words) and I challenge you particularly this week to think what you might be able to sacrifice monetarily to support the CSA for your parish this coming year.
19th Sunday in Ordinary Time
In order to live in this world, we have to trust all kinds of things we see, hear and experience. On a daily basis we extend trust thousands of times - to people, situations, information...everything. A generic definition of "faith" is: "confidence or trust in a person, thing or concept." By this definition, every single person lives their lives by faith each and every day. Faith in God, then, means having confidence and trust in God - that He will do what He says, that what He promises to us humans He will do. In our readings today we see how God comes through on His promises, that God IS trustworthy, that we CAN trust God! The faith held up for us today is that whatever life may bring, no matter how bumpy the road, we know that God has us in the palm of His hand!