Nov 12, 2018
My brothers and sisters,
The last 3 weeks have gone quickly for me in my time spent with you. I have been impressed by the staffs in both parishes. They have taken over and are meeting the needs as they present themselves. In meeting with the various leadership groups, I am in admiration for Fr.Beaver's ability to form and move the parish in building up each community and helping them to fulfill their role. A big thank you to all of them. I have encouraged them to hold to the path and I am available if needed.
I have enjoyed celebrating the liturgies wit the children and on weekends. Your participation and friendliness mirror the "Love of God with your whole mind and strength and love your neighbor as yourself." I am still learning to dismiss the children at the right time and am confusing the extraordinary minister almost at every mass. I have also enjoyed the occasional conversations with the German speaking folks who share my background.
As we approach thanksgiving and Christmas, I have noticed more and more appeals, some desperate, for financial help. I am sure that you are in the same boat. This Sunday's readings will give us an opportunity to reflect on our giving. Elijah meets a woman gathering a few sticks in order to prepare the last meal for her son and herself and then prepare to die of hunger. He asks her to share. She does so and he promises the jar of oil will not be empty until the famine is done. And so it happens.
People are going up to the temple and Jesus watches. Many give much but it is of their extra money. a widow gives a few pennies. It is all she has. Who gives more? I am blessed and now I get an extra stipend for helping in the parishes. It is more than I need. What and to whom and how much will I give as I reflect on God's many blessings?
Let's not get complacent but ponder what the Lord has in mind for us, especially since we could die today.
God's love and mine!
P.S. Fr. Beaver is grateful for your prayers. He is well taken care of and praying for a favorable outcome. He is praying for all of you in both parishes.