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Kailey was a seven year old, living in the Boston area.  As her 8th birthday approached, her parents asked her what she wanted.  She responded, “350 pairs of shoes.”  Asked again, she responded in the same way.  Then she explained that she had seen a program on the Disney Channel, the story of a girl who had collected shoes to give to the poor and needy and she wanted to do the same for her birthday.  Long story short, through social media, she collected 432 pairs of “footwear,” which she donated to those in need.  You can catch the whole story by goggling <Kailey’s Fantabulous Footwear> on the Internet. 

Children can have a much wider vision than we adults.  As time goes by, adults have a tendency to narrow their vision, to limit the possible with all sorts of qualification, restrictions, conditions and contingencies.  Even as her parents tried to do that, all in the name of reality, Kailey saw the brass ring, and went for it.

 With last week’s Gospel of the Baptism of the Lord, and this week’s call to discipleship, the Lord is asking us to widen that vision we have and to jump into the fray.  Recently someone asked me how old Jesus was when He began His ministry.  “When Jesus began his ministry he was about thirty years of age.”  (Luke 3:23).  That question was followed by another question, “What was he doing all that time?”  What was he doing when he was eighteen or twenty or twenty five?  Presumably, working in Nazareth with Joseph, or supporting Mary after Joseph’s death.  But at the same time, discerning the voice of God in his life, a process that would lead him to come to hear the voice of the Father and to follow along the path the Father is setting out for him.  Acknowledging that plan, when “he was about thirty years of age,” Jesus goes to the Jordan River where he is baptized by John.  It is at this time the Spirit descends on Him and the voice from heaven speaks directly to Him (and not to those around Him), “you are my beloved Son.  In you I am well pleased.”  But what has He done that the Father is well pleased?  He has left behind His private life to begin His ministry, the mission to which the Father is calling Him.  And in this, the Father is well pleased. 

 When Jesus comes back from the Jordan (and the temptation in the desert), He calls His disciples to follow Him – to follow Him into that same mission, which Jesus identifies when He is preaching in the synagogue at Nazareth, as the mission to heal the world (“He has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor.  He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, and to let the oppressed go free.” Luke 4: 18).  After much hesitation, misunderstanding fitful starts and stops, the disciples finally get it and at Pentecost (anointed with the same Spirit Jesus received at His baptism) take up the mission to which Jesus invited them in today’s Gospel.

 But you and I have been baptized with water and the Spirit and called to that same mission.  How have you fared in that mission?  When we stand before the Lord in judgment, no doubt he will ask us if we have lied, stolen, committed adultery, hated.  But He will also ask us how we did with the mission He gave us (“I was hungry and you gave me food, thirsty and you gave me drink,” etc.  Matthew 25: 35).  Kailey will be able to answer well.  How ‘bout the rest of us. 

 As we begin this New Year, now is the time to embrace the mission of Jesus, to heal the world, to build the Kingdom, to LIVE THE MISSION.

 God Bless,  Fr. Ron

 PS.  Please look for the info in the bulletin about the invitation to be Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist.  We haven’t done a Ministry Fair in a couple of years and we are in need of new ministers to help distribute the Eucharist, both at Mass and in the Nursing Homes in the parish.

 Also, men, if you haven’s done so yet, there’s still a little time left to sign up for Cornerstone.  I wrote last week about growing disciples.  The Men’s Cornerstone is one way to grow as a disciple.

 Finally, be sure to read and remember the announcement about the change in time for the Sunday evening Mass on Super Bowl Sunday. 

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Mass Schedule

Weekend Liturgies
Saturday, 5:30 p.m.
Sunday
8:00 a.m., 9:30 a.m.,
11:00 a.m., 12:30 p.m.,
3 p.m. (Spanish), 6:30 p.m.
Weekday Liturgies
Monday thru Friday,
6:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m.,
and 12 noon
Saturday, 8:30 a.m. only
Holy Days
Eve: 7:30pm (anticipated)
6:30am, 8:30am, and 12noon 

 

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sgbcross 
Click Here for the Video in English and Spanish

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