At this year’s US Open Golf Tournament, a very popular and well known golfer Phil Mickelson purposely broke a rule of golf. He explained that it was better for him to break the rule and he did not appear remorseful for doing so.
I think it is interesting how we see, not only in the world of golf but in other areas of our everyday lives, these highly defined lines being moved and blurred at a staggering rate. They happen so fast now that few will stand in solidarity against those who commit a crime or an infraction and try to get away with it, often with the help of their friends and allies. They simply try to find a way to justify their behavior and brush it off as no big deal while leaving the rest of us scratching our heads.
Following rules is not always convenient for us; we exceed the speed limit or run a stop sign because we are in a hurry. Athletes’ use illegal means to get ahead; businesses are not always honest. We as individuals are selfish, we gossip, we are not generous with our time, talent or treasures.
The Ten Commandments were given us by God to help us in our relationships both with God and each other. How are we doing?
Do we forgetfully use God’s name in vain and think little of it? Do we place other Gods before us and find them the focus of our lives? Do we honor the Sabbath and attend mass or is it inconvenient and easily dismiss ourselves or others? Do we respect our parents, do we take what is not ours, do we speak well of others or in speech and deed pull them down? Do we follow the Golden rule?
In the case of Phil Mickelson (whom by the way I like) I see a level of arrogance that simply cannot be tolerated or allowed to stand without consequences. He, and the free pass he gave himself, will have to live with this stigma. Many young people look up to Phil and he has given them a poor example. Perhaps this is an opportunity both of me and you to rededicate ourselves to showing Christ to others. We need to especially give good example to our youth and by blatantly ignoring God’s commands gives poor example to our youth. It is hard in our society to find leaders who take responsibility for their actions: we as clergy, we as government and industry leaders, and we as Christian adults have time and again given poor example. This action of Phil Mickelson, while maybe small in the great scheme of things, speaks to a troubling trend in our society and is a reminder to me and hopefully to you to not disregard God’s laws.
Let us pray for each other, for parents who guide their children, for young adults trying to live a just life in our society, for our clergy, for our leaders, for our parish community here at St Gabriel, that God’s ways might be our ways. A good place of prayer in the scriptures might be Matthew Chapters 5, 6, 7, 25.
Msgr. John Shamleffer
All are invited next Sunday June 24 after our 9:00 am liturgy to thank Fr. Ryan Weber for his pastoral care here at St. Gabriel and asking God’s blessings to be upon him as he departs our community for his new pastoral assignment.
In a sad but blessed note many thanks to Fr. Ryan Weber for sharing the gift of his priesthood with our parish family this past year and know that he is in our prayers always, as he begins his priestly ministry at Assumption parish, may the Holy Spirit guide him.
Our Annual Catholic Appeal continues, so far we have still not heard from many of our parishioners. Please consider making a pledge to this appeal, which aids the neediest in our archdiocese. If you have any questions about the appeal please contact me.
Stewardship Reflection ~ June 24, 2018
The Nativity of St. John the Baptist
“...Behold, one is coming after me; I am not worthy to unfasten the sandals of his feet.” ‐ ACTS 13:25
Stewardship is a lifestyle, it’s not a program or a process. It’s how we are called to live our lives twenty‐four hours a day, seven days a week! It challenges us to live “God‐ centered” lives, not “self‐centered” lives. Reflect on you daily activities. Do you do them for the glory of God or for the glory of your own name?
We are St. Gabriel!