The more we read about events in Virginia this past weekend, the demonstration of racism, bigotry and self-proclaimed superiority; reminds us that while much progress has been made since the civil rights movement of the 1960s, there is still much more to do. And yet, there are some who cling to misguided and evil beliefs about what makes America unique and remarkable. The United States Bishops have rightly condemned all forms of bigotry and hatred, denouncing any form of hatred as a sin.
“We must find unity as a country, as a city, as a neighborhood, as parishioners. Unity does not mean we all believe the same things, but here in America we must be united by a shared interest in freedom, liberty and love for our neighbor. Without respect for each other, even when we adamantly disagree, we will see more violence and discord in this great nation. Racism is a sin and all Christians, all people of faith, should not only reject it, not only oppose it, but fight against it.”
St. Ignatius Loyola used to say to his community. “Pray as though everything depends on God, but act and be aggressive as if everything depends on us.”
Think before you speak (What is it you really want to say?)
Listen to the other, carefully
Practice Random Acts of Kindness (it will bring you and others joy)
Pray (we need God)
Pray for our city, our world, all areas of inhumanity and injustice, pray for each other: that kindness truly is our way of life.
Prayer of St. Francis
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
Where there is offense, let me bring pardon.
Where there is discord, let me bring union.
Where there is error, let me bring truth.
Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
here there is despair, let me bring hope.
Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.
Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
O Master, let me not seek as much to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love,
for it is in giving that one receives,
it is in self-forgetting that one finds,
it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,
it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life.
Msgr. John Shamleffer
Stewardship Reflection ~ August 20, 2017 | Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time
“For the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.” Romans 11:29
God has a special mission in mind for each of us. He has given us the gifts we need to accomplish that mission. We are called to be good stewards by using those gifts to do the work that He has planned for each of us. If we deny our gifts or fail to use them as God calls us to use them, then some part of His work will be left undone.
We are St. Gabriel!