The apparently unfair gospel today emphasizes the tremendous generosity of our God, a God who calls each of us through baptism to some service in the Church. Today it is my honor and privilege to commission the teachers and catechists here at St. Rita Parish for another year of service. These faithful Catholics have responded to the generosity of God by being generous with their own time and passing on the faith to others. Before I entered the seminary, I taught 4th grade religious education and can say without a doubt that I received so many blessings through this service. I encourage and challenge those not involved in some ministry, to consider generously sharing your faith in some area of ministry. I recall an old Chinese proverb that states: “If you want to be happy for an hour – take a nap. If you want to be happy for a day – go fishing. If you want to be happy for a week – take a trip. If you want to be happy for a month – get married. If you want to be happy for a year – inherit money. If you want to be happy for a lifetime – serve others.”
The first reading from the prophet Isaiah reminds all of us to: “Seek the Lord while he may be found, call him while he is near.” Please, seek God’s guidance for how you might serve in the Church. I am so thankful for those who say “yes” to service and especially those who teach and share the faith with children, teens and adults.
St. Paul begins our second reading today with these profound words: “Brothers and sisters, Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.” I pray that each of you will take seriously the call and challenge to service in the Church so that Christ may be magnified through you. Peace.