FATHER FRANK’S FIRE
This week’s readings are truly timeless. I think they speak to people of all ages. Every age seems to have its own set of challenges and difficulties. Sometimes there is the challenge of war, violence or poverty. Our times are challenged with these and a more inclusive word — bullying.
Bullying is not just something that happens to children and teenagers. It happens to young adults, adults and senior citizens. It has reached epidemic proportions. Social Media has not helped. Many people feel the freedom to write about anyone at any time without realizing the damage that can be done to someone’s feelings or reputation.
When we bully, we first judge others and then decide they are inferior to us. Then we put them down to build ourselves up. Sometimes we try to get others involved so that we do not have to do it alone. But is this the way that descent people should act? Is this the way Christians are supposed to behave?
St. James tells us no. St. James tells us what it at the bottom of judging. St. James says, “Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice.” When we judge others and find them lacking often times the problem is ours. We are often jealous and self-ambitious. We covet but do not possess; we envy but we cannot obtain; we fight and wage war using everything at our disposal – insults, half-truths, slander, and gossip. True wisdom comes from above. How will we recognize it? It is pure, peaceful, gentle, works together with others, and is full of mercy and good fruits. Let us follow the Wisdom of God, and not the foolish wisdom of our world.
Catechetical Sunday – This weekend we celebrate Catechetical Sunday. The theme for this year is “Enlisting Witnesses for Jesus Christ.” Catechetical Sunday is a wonderful opportunity to reflect upon the role that each person plays by virtue of Baptism, in handing on the faith and being a witness to the Gospel. This is an opportunity for all of us to rededicate ourselves to the mission of Jesus as a community of faith.
Seminary Appeal – This weekend is the Annual Seminary Appeal. This year we have Patrick Wille, a seminarian from Mundelein Seminary who will speak at all of the Masses. I ask you to be generous in support of the Annual Seminary Appeal and to continue to pray for vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
Patrick has also been assigned to St. Michael as part of the Teaching Parish Program. He will be with us on the weekends and his responsibilities are to be determined. I received the following from Patrick: