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Fr. Ron's Blog

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Dear Friends,
If you’ve driven by the church for more than a week now, or if you came to Mass last weekend and entered by the front, no doubt you’ve seen the banners on the front of the church telling you that it’s Stewardship Renewal time. Each year, we spend a few weeks in the early fall to renew our commitment to STEWARDSHIP, A WAY OF LIFE here at Mount Carmel. Often, visitors tell me that Mount Carmel seems to be so alive, filled with so much energy. The life and vibrancy of our parish community is a direct result of our commitment to Stewardship. (And, of course, the Lord’s blessings and grace). We have grown as a community, in our prayer life, in the monetary resources we are able to use and share for the building of the Kingdom of God, and in the ministries in which and through which we do both of these, because of Stewardship. Over these last almost twenty years, hundreds, thousands have come forward to offer their gifts and talents, their time and treasure for this work.

Have you been blessed by God? Think about that for a moment. Family, friends, work, living in this time and place, in an age of such great advances in medicine, communications and technology? Who can say there is nothing in their lives to be thankful for? And how do you show that thankfulness? A prayer on Thanksgiving Day? A prayer to St. Anthony for finding those lost car keys for you? Or to St. Joseph for finally selling your house? Does the way you live your thankfulness really reflect the debt you owe to God for His goodness? Stewardship invites us to be thankful in three very concrete ways, with our time, and our talent and our treasure.

At the same time, Stewardship is a Disciple’s Response to the call of Jesus to follow Him. We can respond to that call on many different levels. We respond by living a good life, following both the teachings and the example of Jesus’ own life. This is a moral/ethical response. Being a disciple directly relates me to Jesus, in the Sacraments and especially in the Eucharist. And so the disciple regularly and faithfully celebrates the Sacraments. This might be called the religious response. Yet another level of response is lived by those who want to see their whole lives in relationship to the God who gives life, sustains us in that life and leads us through that life to His Eternal Kingdom. They want to be His witnesses in the world, so that others may come to know Him in the same way and they want their relationship with Him to grow every day.

It is this last level that hits on what Stewardship is all about. It is a path which seeks to integrate faith into every aspect of daily life. And Stewardship, as a response to Jesus’ call, offers three ways to integrate God and life this way, through the use of Time, Talent and Treasure.

This weekend, I ask you to reflect on your Stewardship of Time. Time is the easiest of God’s gifts to understand. This morning, you got out of bed and planted your feet on the floor. A gift already. God has given you another day. Who knows how many more of these there will be. So the Stewardship of Time asks you how you use the most precious gift of time. Isn’t it true that when you return from a trip, especially travelling abroad, most people will ask you how you spent your time, what you did, what you saw?

The same is true of God the Lord is asking you how you’re spending your time. Are you spending your time running around, making money, socializing, driving the kids, building your kingdom? Where is God in this? Simply put, am I in contact enough with God? Do I pray enough? In most surveys of how Americans spend their time, working, sleeping and eating top the list, while religious activities (praying, worshipping) come at the very bottom of the list, on average, one hour per week. The Stewardship of Time challenges you to be honest about your time with God and to do something about it if you find it lacking. Opportunities for increased prayer abound, from more scripture reading, to the Rosary, to meditative and contemplative prayer or Adoration in the Eucharistic Chapel. I have heard testimony from many a person of how the time in the Adoration Chapel brings peace and solace that calms the anxieties of life.

The Stewardship of Time is all the time we spend building God’s kingdom (in us) and not our own. This is at the heart of any reflection - of the 168 hours in a week, what amount of that time is given to God and His Kingdom for, as our bulletin cover reminds us, sooner or later, like the sands of the glass, our time will run out.
Let’s all put our time to “good use.”

God Bless,
Fr. Ron

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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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Click Here for the Video in English and Spanish

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