|Find what your missing
Part 4 of 4
Its catching on. I know it. I feel it in my bones. I believe a lot
of people are really going to come home at Christmas. I began the
initiative convinced that many catholics have lost their way, lost the plot in
the story of life.
Some may be angry with the church for one reason or another, but in
my view, not the majority.
The majority who stay away from mass and the sacraments have drifted.
They haven't deliberately walked out or turned their backs on the church.
As Canadian sociologist of religion. Reginald Biddy, puts it: ¡§People aren't
leaving their churches, they just aren't going to them.¡¨
Busy days and nights, hundreds of competing ¡§happenings,¡¨ a
warm bed on a cold sunday morning, a day not to have to get dressed and
go to school, the office, factory or construction site, - these are some of the
reasons for drifting. What pressure there is on young people. Hardly a
day goes by, without my asking myself, if I could have survived had I been
faced with the pressures they experience. How in the world do they keep
their balance? Drugs are pushed on them wherever they turn. They see
indescribable movies. They are given the impression that to be a virgin is
not cool, it¡¦s to be some kind of freak. And, of course, many parents are
under equivalent pressures to keep up with the Jones's, not realizing that
the poor Jones's are broke!
Even so, one can at the same time, reach out and touch the
spiritual hunger adults and young alike, who have drifted, or who have
been lured away from the practice of the faith. And that gives me hope.
That convinces me that many of our people have been waiting for
something like an invitation to come home at Christmas and discover what
they are missing.
Invite our wandering brothers and sisters to come home where
they belong. Invite them to return, not reproachfully or with
condemnation, not judgementally, but with love and warmth and, if
possible, accompany them on the journey back.
Hopefully, they won¡¦t return expecting to find a perfect church. No
one is perfect. Indeed, the idea of perfection frightens me. Nobody can
identify with perfection. Perfection properly understood, does not mean
we must be totally faultless. It does mean that we have a perfect ideal
and strive for it. When we fall short we linger there for a ¡§brief moment¡¨,
then we immediately try again to pursue our ideal. And that is as near to
perfection as we are able to come.
Good news and great joy to all the world: today is born our Saviour,
Christ the Lord.
(LK 2: 10-11)
Mystery of faith! Who really understands it fully? Who has to? Do we
need to understand a surprise to be thrilled with its beauty?
The heart has reasons that the reason knows not of.
An nativity play, written, produced and acted by a class of nine -
year - olds, opens with the scene at the inn.
Joseph and Mary ask for a room overlooking Bethlehem.
Innkeeper: Can¡¦t you see the ¡§No vacancy¡¨
Joseph: Yes, but can¡¦t you see that my wife is
expecting a baby any minute?
Innkeeper: Well, that¡¦s not my fault.
Joseph: Well, it¡¦s not mine either!
¡§God loved the world so much that He gave us his only Son.¡¨
¡§The word was made flesh and dwelt amongst us.¡¨
Instead of shaking Santa Claus¡¦s hand the seven year old kicked him
on the shin. Santa, Santa, shocked and hurt said: ¡§Why did you do that?¡¨
The boy replied: ¡§That¡¦s for last year!¡¨
A man explaining why he doesn¡¦t play golf: ¡§I have enough crises in
my life without volunteering for 18 of them on my day off.¡¨
Following the wrong God home we may miss our star.
The next bulletin will appear on the weekend of January 14th, 2001.
The shop will close at 5.30pm on Saturday 23rd December and will
re-open on Thursday 28th December 2000 at 9.30am.
New times for the rite of reconciliation/ confessions on saturdays:
11am - 12 noon,
4pm - 5pm.
Padre Pio Mass
The monthly Padre Pio Mass will take place in the Dominican Church
on tuesday 2nd January 2001. Starting with rosary at 7.15pm
We wish you the gladness of Christmas which is Hope; the spirit of
Christmas which is Peace; and the heart of Christmas which is Love.
Dominican Community and Staff at St. Saviours.