Striving for Deeper Holiness: September 19, 2021

PASTOR’S WEEKLY SPIRITUAL MESSAGE

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Friends, blessings from Saint Clement's. I hope and pray that this fall season treats you well and that as you listen to the Word of God this weekend, you both will feel uplifted by the message of Jesus, but also challenged to go more deeply into understanding how that Word applies to you and what that Word calls you to do in your spiritual life.

The scripture that we hear today is a scripture of an argument between the disciples, the friends of Jesus, about who has the most power, who is the most powerful among them. Jesus challenges them not to focus on power, but to focus on love. The question that the disciples ask is the wrong question. They shouldn't be arguing about who has more power. What they should be measuring themselves is by who has the most love and mercy toward the others. Our experience with Jesus, who always looks at us with mercy and compassion -- that's why we begin every Mass by recognizing that God is merciful to us -- is an invitation to always live out that mercy of God in the way in which we treat one another we live with in our lives in the community and family and in our places of work. The invitation of the Gospel is simple and yet challenging. How are we agents of the merciful love of Jesus toward others? How, not only do we welcome the message of Jesus as mercy and love into our lives, but how do we put it in practice?

Here at Saint Clement, we put in practice in many different ways, by the way we worship God on Sundays, by the way in which we bring all different groups from school and religious education, our young adult ministry, our youth ministry, our outreach to those who want to protect and care for the planet through our Laudato Si ministry, or our justice ministry that recently, one more time through our parish, is inviting all of us to help in funding a family that is being resettled from Afghanistan to the United States. I invite you to consider supporting this wonderful opportunity for us as a parish to partner with Catholic Charities in ensuring the safety and security of one of the families that had to flee their own home and look for a place of peace and hope that they can raise their children in.

I also invite you to make a next step in your spiritual lives, friends. Jesus invites us to abide in his love and mercy, but in order for us to be in that place of freedom, we ourselves have to make a journey towards recognizing how present Jesus is to us. That's why we offer the Alpha course. That's why we offer the Marriage Enrichment course. That's why we are starting the Lydia course for professional women. That's why our young adult teams and ministry have so many small groups as a way for us to stir this understanding that God is present to us and that God loves us. I invite you to visit clement.org to look for one of many opportunities this fall and to invite you to join us for one of them, so together we can experience the mercy and the love of Jesus. God bless you all!