Humbly submit your will to God (Thy Will be done) and consecrate yourself to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through Mary.
Jesus summoned his Twelve disciples
and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out
and to cure every disease and every illness.
The names of the Twelve Apostles are these:
first, Simon called Peter, and his brother Andrew;
James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John;
Philip and Bartholomew,
Thomas and Matthew the tax collector;
James, the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddeus;
Simon the Cananean, and Judas Iscariot
who betrayed Jesus.
Jesus sent out these Twelve after instructing them thus,
“Do not go into pagan territory or enter a Samaritan town.
Go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’” MT 10:1-7
An estimated 22 million people are fallen-away Catholics in the U.S. St. John Paul II encouraged the Church to seek out those who have fallen away, the New Evangelization. Why have they fallen away? They didn’t think the Church met their spiritual needs, they thought another religion did fulfill those needs, and most importantly they didn’t feel welcome. A parish community that welcomes and offers many opportunities for people to feel a part of the parish is crucial. We are made for relationship. We must teach young people to know who Jesus Christ is and fall in love with Him. If our leader spent most of His time among the confused, abandoned, those who are on the fringes of society, but the people in our Catholic Churches are the opposite and do not welcome people with open arms, we have a crisis on our hands.
Instead of waving our moral teaching fist in the air criticizing people, we must teach the Divine Mercy of Jesus Christ that is infinite and bigger than the ocean. Doctrine can come later, first we must offer a hand, a drink, and a meal. We must forgive and allow people to heal. Christ wants us to come to Him broken not perfect. Most importantly, the reason I believe people fall away from the Church or criticize it is because too many Catholics don’t follow their own faith, actions speak louder than words.
Today’s challenge: Seek to find ways to make your parish more welcoming. Ask a fallen away Catholic in your family to come to a parish event.
Be a servant, become a saint!