26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

September 30, 2018

Today we celebrate the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time. This week’s scriptures call our attention to where we see the Spirit in action for doing God’s will, whether in a friend, a foe, or even us. Jesus says, “Whoever is not against us is for us.” If someone therefore does good rather than evil, showing the values of Jesus, look at it as the Spirit at work. We might just see a model of how to live our discipleship more clearly ourselves. Rash judgments or over-reaction, like that of the disciples, often blinds us to those models, especially when they don’t fit our expectations. Think about the Muslims in the Middle-East, who surrounded Christian churches to protect them. Think about people who hid Jews during the Holocaust. Think about first responders from all faiths, and even with no faith, who entered crumbling buildings on 9/11. These people embodied the ways of Jesus. Manifesting the Spirit of God, as Eldad and Medad did, they are with us, even if not members of our camp. Would that all people of faith clearly manifested the Spirit. St. James reminds us that we are called to respond to the cries of the least, the last, and the lost, to be as concerned for others as we are ourselves. Too often self-centeredness, dividing who’s in and who’s out, fear of change, can fill our hearts. Whoever is not against us is for us.

Thank you to all who have already turned in their Stewardship commitment cards. Also, many thanks to Chuck & Anne Feise for their time and talent last weekend in sharing the Joy in their lay witness talk at our masses. We are so blessed in our community of faith with dedicated disciples, each gifted by God with talents for the building up of His Kingdom. If we all commit to using these to do His will in St. Luke Parish, we will see how each of us makes our parish stronger, livelier, and fulfilling our mission. Over the next several weeks I invite all of our parishioners to discern their gifts and offer them in faithful stewardship to help build up our parish.

Now that I have returned from holiday, I am looking forward to working with our Parish Pastoral Council to determine some priorities for our parish for the coming year and setting action steps to achieve them. Parish Council meetings are open to all parishioners who want to share their concerns, ask questions, and bring ideas. (You can also contact a member of the Council and share these.) Before leaving the parish, Rich Kurz took photos of the Council Members. They will be displayed on one of the bulletin boards in the main vestibule of Church. Their names are also in the bulletin each week. St. Luke’s is blessed to have members willing to share their time and talent to help direct the mission of the parish and be my most valuable collaborators.

WOW! Did you read the report of the work of our St. Vincent de Paul last weekend in the bulletin? I am always amazed at the remarkable work they accomplish, but also the remarkable generosity of parishioners, members, and benefactors who provide the resources needed for our generous volunteers to provide assistance to so many. As your pastor, I am truly grateful to shepherd a parish that cares so much for those less fortunate. Thank you for your continued support of our parish’s St. Vincent de Paul Society, and thank you to all our Vincentians.

Please remember that this coming Friday, October 5th, is the first Friday of the month. Eucharistic Adoration will begin after the 8:00am Mass and continue until 1:00pm when we close with the Rite of Benediction. If you aren’t able to commit to a time slot, please stop in the chapel at anytime to make a visit with our Lord. However long or short your stay, the Lord welcomes you and blesses you for making a visit.

God Bless! Have a good week!

Remember those 3 Hail Marys (Fr. Pete)