“Come, you who are blessed by my Father,… whatever you did for one of the least of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25: 31-46
Dorothy is a successful award winning playwright and screenwriter. She’s also a mom and an active member of her parish. In 2017, in an essay in The Los Angeles Review of Books, she explained why she and her family go to Mass every Sunday.
“Being a noted screenwriter is like being on a perpetual second date with everyone you know. You strive to be your most charming and delightful self because you never know what will come of the encounter. It can be exhausting and church is the opposite of that.
I am not special at church, and that is the point. Because our God is so ridiculously generous we are all equally beloved children of God. We are all exactly the same amount of ‘special’. The things that I feel proud of can’t help me here, and the things that I feel embarrassed by are beside the point. I’m a person but, for 60 minutes, I’m not a personality . . .!
I come to church to sit next to people, well aware of all we don’t have in common, and we pray together. Halfway through the mass, I turn to the one next to me and share the peace of Christ. I wish that they experience peace in their lives. That’s it. They wish the same for me. Our words are identical. Our need for peace is infinite. Church is a group of imperfect individuals united by our brokenness traveling together asking to be fixed.
Church isn’t an escape from the world. It’s a continuation of it. My family and I don’t go to church to deny the existence of the darkness, of evil. We go there to look so hard at the light that our eyes water.”
A place where we “look so hard at the light that our eyes water” is one of the best descriptions of what the “kingdom of Christ,” really is. It is a community of real people who gather together, in all their frailty, brokenness, and struggles to follow Jesus.
This pandemic has prevented us from experiencing the real power and goodness of gathering in our church as a community. We are showing the signs of the toll that absence can take on our spiritual and mental well-being. We come to church to give our time and talent to pick up one another when we stumble; with humility and gratitude, we reach out for one another’s hand. We come to church to stand as brothers and sisters and remember before God all are loved without condition or limit.
We desperately need that time and experience of God and one another now more than ever. We need the strength we draw from being together with each other. We hunger for the hope God gives when we share communion. We long for the encouragement we take when we see others who share our same journey of faith. Let us pray we soon can be together again. We need the light that makes our eyes water!
THREE WAYS OF PARISH GIVING
1. St. Lads 2020 Nursing Home Giving Tree:
There are some nursing home gifts still needing to be claimed. If you and your family are willing to help a resident receive a Christmas gift. Head over to the website, https://tinyurl.com/y62hn4mu and claim a gift. All gifts need to be returned to the Church by December 4th.
2. St. Vincent de Paul Adopt a Family Program:
Due to the spread of the virus, St. Vincent de Paul has reluctantly decided to postpone “Adopt a Family for Christmas Program.” However they will accept donations at the church to help those in need with food, clothing, and heating costs at this season. Just mark your envelope St. Vincent de Paul to ensure your donation is directed to assisting those in need.
3. St. Vincent de Paul Truck
One of our St. Vincent de Paul trucks used to collect and distribute food is reaching the end of its mechanical life. If you are able to donate toward the purchase of a truck it will help to ensure we can safely continue collecting and distributing food to so many in need throughout the year. Just mark your envelope St. Vincent de Paul “truck” to ensure your donation is directed to that effort.
Thank you, as always, for your kindness and may God bless your care for those in need.
Fr. Don Snyder