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  • Notes from your Pastor

    The Call to Sacrificial Love


    Pastor Chuck Swindoll tells the following true story.  A missionary who was sitting at her second story window was handed a letter from home.  As she opened the letter, a crisp new ten dollar bill fell out.  She was pleasantly surprised.  But as she read the letter, her eyes were distracted by the movement of a shabbily dressed stranger down below, leaning against a post of the building.  She could not get the poorly dressed stranger out of her mind.  Thinking that this man might be in greater financial distress than she was, she slipped the ten dollar bill into an envelope and quickly penned the words, “Don’t Despair.”  She threw the envelope with the ten dollars and note out the window.  The stranger below picked it up, read it, looked up, nodded, smiled, tipped his hat and went away.


    The next day as she was about to leave the house, a knock was heard at the door.  She found the same shabbily dressed stranger.  He smiled as he handed her a roll of bills.  When she asked, “What is this money for?” the man replied “I went to the racetrack and bet the money on a horse named “Don’t Despair”, so this is your money, Lady!  Don’t Despair paid five-to-one!”


    I sure wish that life always worked like that, don’t you?  I wish that every time we did something good for someone else that we would receive an instant reward.  Then everyone would be doing good deeds continuously.  The problems of this world would be solved overnight.  But that’s not the way that life works is it?  The shabbily dressed stranger could have just as easily shown up the next day asking for more money.  Sometimes, we hear the expression “No good deed goes unpunished.”  Sometimes, it seems as if that’s the way things turn out.


    So why do good for others who may or may not reward you?  What is the motivation to be a generous, caring person if life does not give you an immediate material reward for it?  It is because we are pursuing a higher calling and an eternal reward.


    Christ reveals that He will suffer greatly, be rejected and be killed in His pursuit to do the Father’s will and save us.  Peter initially rejects this concept of a Suffering Messiah.  He does not wish Jesus to suffer, be rejected and be killed.  Secondly, as a disciple of the Master the same fate may very well come to Him.


    Christ reveals that the mission of saving people for Him, the apostles and us requires embracing sacrificial love.  “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.  For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it.”


    Why do we do good deeds?  We do good deeds because we are followers of Christ.  Yes, we may not receive immediate gratification or a material reward.  We do good deeds for others because we follow a higher calling and we aspire to receive an eternal reward.


    Christ poses the question to us, “Who do you say that I am?”  Hopefully, we answer the question by proclaiming that Christ is Our Savior and Lord in our words and in our deeds.


    You may remember that there was a time that people wore bracelets with the initials – WWJD, What would Jesus do?  That is what those four initials WWJD stood for.  When a situation arose the person was to look at the bracelet and ask oneself, “What would Jesus do?”  Then according to the teaching of St. James in our second reading, we go out and do what Jesus would do.


    Christ teaches us that His mission involved sacrificial love and our mission involves sacrificial love as well.  We lift other people up by our sacrifices, large and small.  Together let us do what Jesus would do.




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    Please remember in you r prayers those who are sick.  May they and their caregivers receive comfort and strength, remembering especially Mary Adams, Sierra Adams, Mary Ann Betliskey, Tony Betliskey, Pat Colburn, Donna Czyzynski,
    Corrine Dawe, Joseph Deccola, Carole Dlouhy, Jose Dybzinski, Joan Gorris, Richard Hejl,
    Kristin Hill, Frances Holecek, Ethan Jackson,
    Millie Jasany, Judy Landolph,
    Bishop Richard Lennon, Barbie Lister,
    Art Madsen, Rose Meadows, Jeanette Miller, Marguerite Miller, Geri Milton, Nikki Milton, Donna Murrin, Louis Novac, Art Novotny,
    John Pocius, Joel Rivera, Sue Seda,
    Margaret Slechta, Elaine Stack, Frank Tekien,
    Rev. John Tezie, Ed Vitigoj, Marilyn Tressler, Carole Walk, Ron Walk, Robert Wagner,
    Tom Woznik, Greg Wisniewski and Barb Witovicz.
                For the Men and Women serving in the military, especially those from our parish and their families.
                For Our Loved Ones who have died that they rest in eternal peace in heaven.