Having given a good, honest look at your role in your family and the community every week, I am sure, one would ponder and pray over how he/she contributes to their family’s growth and unity can be humbling, exciting, and challenging. Hopefully, it is also inspirational and motivational.
In the same way, Evangelization begins at the family, and we must embrace that awesome responsibility, no matter what our role is. We model our faith and our values. We model Jesus Christ. There is no room for mediocrity. As good and faithful stewards, and as good Catholic Christians, we live each day in this spirit. To be cliché but on target, our lives are a marathon, not a sprint. We must constantly pause and reassess our responsibility as primary evangelizers and life-long stewards of our Faith and Church.
Our current Church and her future depend upon us. “Stewardship is a Disciple’s Response”. As we make evangelization a part of our local and personal stewardship, we make an impact on our parishes, where the stewardship way of life is learned, implemented, and practiced. This means a very serious and sincere commitment of time, talent, and treasure towards the growth of our family as well as parish is responsibly and generously contributed.
Parishes depend upon parishioners for life and vitality. After all, our living as good and faithful stewards, and our giving as generous stewards, gives the Church hope to keep our parishes the vibrant center of our Catholic Faith and Christian community. As a part of our diocese and parishes we unite in faith, worship, service, and stewardship. As a part of the Body of Christ, stewardship must extend to other local Churches, our brothers and sisters everywhere. We could do this in very practical ways. We can be personally engaged in mission work and we can give generously of our treasure just like the poor widow contributed her mite. The Lord was pleased by the quality of her generosity.
The Church is not coming after us week after week, looking for more of our money. It is our opportunity to truly help those in need. This gives us solidarity with our fellow members of the Body of Christ. But sometime personal & religious conflicts and divisions can obstruct solidarity. We must work – as good stewards – to embrace all men and women, especially those in need, in a communion of mercy and love. The Eucharist unites us with Jesus Christ and with one another. We bring our very lives to the altar. We thank God for our gifts of time, talent, and treasure, and we share those gifts. Our practical challenge this week is to meditate upon real Christian solidarity, rooted in stewardship. How can we truly find solidarity with those in need and with those with whom we are in conflict and division?
The greatest way for us to be good Christian stewards is to model Jesus Christ. We are to be faithful to God’s will and to continue to be good and faithful stewards for our fellow brothers and sisters and our world. Our solidarity keeps us close as the Body of Christ.
Here I would like expressing my sincere appreciation and gratitude for your commitment and contribution towards the growth of our parish. Thanks to each one of you who have been so faithful in various ministries and others who have come forward to be a part of it. God Bless you all.
Fr. Jacob Alvares, SAC