Bottom line: We'll hear more about care for the afflicted as we read James these five Sundays of September. Today I invite you to learn more about our giving through the Annual Catholic Appeal and Stewardship.
This Sunday is my 72nd birthday. (wait for applause) After Masses I'm heading for Redmond, Oregon, to get together with my friends, Fr. Jim Coleman and Bishop Liam Cary. I told them, "I'm sure you guys know its my birthday, but don't make a big deal about it." They assured me they wouldn't. You can, though, when I'm back the Sunday after next.
Today I've asked our P.A.A. (Pastoral Associate for Administration) to give an update regarding Stewardship and the Annual Catholic Appeal. I want to tie it in with the reading from James. He speaks about how all good giving come from the Father of lights. Good giving means to be generous in doing the right thing for the right reason.
In James' vision God is the source of all kindness, generosity and justice. If I do something good, I need to give credit where credit belongs. God is the primary cause. He is the father of lights. You and I are the secondary cause of any good work. On the other hand, if I do evil I can't blame God. I have abused the free will he gave me. I know it sounds unfair but that's the way it is. We won't see God's perfect justice until we arrive at the Judgment Day.
Right now we need to respond to God: By welcoming his word, says James, we will save our souls. The soul is the inner core that endures. The soul either turns to God and others or becomes twisted, curved in on itself.
Jesus addresses this when he speaks about sins that defile. Your favorite one might be on this list: "evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly." James tells that guarding against corruption is essential to true religion.
Religion has taken on a negative connotation. James, however, says that religion pure and undefiled means to care for orphans and widows in their affliction. This refers to those who fall through the cracks of society. We see them every day on our streets - and in our families. Our St. Vincent de Paul reaches out to them. To support St. Vincent de Paul, Catholic Charity, Annual Catholic Appeal, Mary Bloom is a way of caring for those afflicted. When I was a missionary in Peru we used to say, some give by going, others go by giving.
We'll hear more about care for the afflicted as we read James these 5 Sundays of September. Today I invite you to learn more about our giving through the Annual Catholic Appeal and Stewardship. With a prayer in your heart I ask you to give your attention to our P.A.A. Anita Maceda.
From Archives (22nd Ordinary Sunday - Year B):
Seapadre Homilies: Cycle A, Cycle B, Cycle C
Audio Files of Homilies (Simple Catholicism Blog)
Take the Plunge Bible Study (audio resources) *New episodes for Summer - Kings and Prophets*
Are these homilies a help to you? Please consider making a donation to St. Mary of the Valley Parish.
Other Priests' Homilies, Well Worth Listening:
Fr. Frank Schuster
Fr. Brad Hagelin
Fr. Jim Northrop
Fr. Michael White
Fr Pat Freitag (and deacons of St. Monica)
Bishop Robert Barron
Bulletin (St. Mary of Valley Parish)
Parish Picture Album
MBC - Mary Bloom Center, Puno, Peru