Keep your eyes on the Lord.
Visit the Diocese of Lansing website for scholarship information.
SUNDAY 6TH WEEK YEAR C
Today’s readings teach us that true happiness, or beatitude, lies in the awareness that we are all children of a loving Heavenly Father and that we will be happy only when we share our blessings with our brothers and sisters in need, and when we work to uplift them, thus declaring our “option for the poor,” as Jesus did. In the first reading, Jeremiah tells us that true happiness consists in placing our trust in God and in putting our trust in His promises. St. Paul warns us that true beatitude is obtainable only in Heaven and that Christ’s Resurrection gives us our assurance of reaching Heaven for an everlasting life of happiness. In today’s Gospel, Jesus instructs his disciples in the paradoxical blessedness of poverty, hunger, sorrow and persecution. “Blessed are those who are poor, hungry, weeping, hated, excluded, insulted and denounced,” because in poverty, we recognize our dependence on God; in hunger, God’s providence; in sorrow for sins, reconciliation with God; and in persecution, the true joy of standing for the Faith with heroic convictions. What makes one blessed is not simply poverty or hunger or sadness or suffering for the Faith but living these in the context of our commitment to Jesus and his spirit of sharing.
We need to respond to the challenge of the beatitudes in our daily life. The only way the promises of the beatitudes can become a reality is through the efforts of people like us. That is why we are told that we will be judged on the basis of our acts of mercy and charity (Mt. 25:31-46). St. Teresa of Calcutta, (Mother Teresa) and her Sisters have accepted this challenge and demonstrate that we can “live the beatitudes” in the modern world. Hence, let us remember that each time we reach out to help the needy, the sick, and the oppressed, we share with them a foretaste of the promises of the beatitudes here and now. Just as the apostles were called to minister to society’s untouchables, all Christians are called to minister to the untouchables, and the discriminated, and the marginalized in our own modern society.
God wants us to live as brothers and sisters who care for one another. That is why, down through the centuries, individuals, congregations and church bodies have practiced charity in creative, faithful ways.
In the Beatitudes, the Lord reminded all of us His people, that unless we learn and try to let go of all wicked desires, and restrain all those thoughts of pride, ambition, and not allowing our ego and pride to overcome us, we will end up falling into sin, deeper and deeper, and eventually sin leads to death, and not just any death, but eternal death and damnation. For those who sin and does not repent, they have no part in the Covenant that God had made with all those who are faithful to Him.
Moreover, through the Beatitudes, God is calling us all to follow the path that He had set before us all. He is calling us to be faithful, in all things and in all of our dealings and actions, that we place God as the very core and center of our lives and existences. We are called to be peacemakers, to be those who bring the love of God to one another, sharing the love and blessings, which He has so generously given us, so that each one of us may enjoy the fruits of God’s wonderful love.
Let us all grow in faith in God, and devote ourselves to love God and to turn ourselves away from the path of sin and wickedness. Let us all strive to overcome our attachment to worldly temptations and goods, and instead, make the effort to put our complete trust in God. Let us all seek the Lord with all of our strength, and let us all grow ever closer to Him, from now on, through the lessons of the Beatitudes, and bear the fruits of the Beatitudes of Christ in our daily living.
Dear Sacred Heart Family,
This week I will be in Dewitt on Monday and Tuesday for the Diocesan New Pastor Institute. The training will focus more particularly on the business side of Parish Administration. There will be three of us new pastors going through it together.
When it comes to our spiritual lives, they should be a mix of the ordinary and extraordinary. The ordinary are the foundational pieces that are simply a part of our lives- think of taking time to pray each day, attending Mass on weekends, some sort of ongoing support of the poor, etc. The extraordinary moments are just that- special moments of encounter like going on a retreat, attending the life in the Spirit Seminar (which is being offered at both Sacred Heart and St. Mary’s), going on a pilgrimage etc. Every year it is a good rule of thumb to try and include one or two of these extraordinary moments in the midst of our ordinary living of our faith.
For the men of the parish one such extraordinary opportunity is coming up next weekend, the Diocesan Men’s conference. I hope to attend the latter part of the day and con-celebrate Mass with the Bishop. This one-day event is a great time to invite Jesus in more deeply into your life and to be encouraged and built up.
Here is the info for the conference- it would be great to see you there.
Men, come to grow in your faith at the annual Diocese of Lansing’s Catholic Men’s Conference. In carrying out the tradition of providing an atmosphere of support and helping the Catholic men among us to courageously live a Christ-centered life in today’s world, this year’s theme will focus on how to ‘wear the armor of God’. Ephesians 6:10-18
“In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all [the] flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
When: February 23, 2019
Where: Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church
913 Napoleon Road, Michigan Center, MI 49254
Time: 10 AM – 5 PM
What To Expect:
Individual Ticket Prices: Adults $40 / Students $30
Register/Purchase Tickets: http://www.themanevent.org/register
Why do Catholics use the crucifix instead of a cross? After all, Jesus is not dead, He is alive. A crucifix is a cross with Jesus’ Corpus, a representation of his crucified body. A cross bears either no figure at all, or one like the Risen Jesus. There are a few ways to answer this question, so let’s start with the Mass.
Simply put, the General Instruction of the Roman Missal requires a crucifix be clearly visible either on or near the Altar for Mass. The crucifix is there to remind us of the sacrifice Jesus made which becomes present every time we celebrate Mass. Not that Jesus is sacrificed again at every Mass, but that we are REMINDED of the sacrifice he made for us. A plain cross just doesn’t have the same impact. The Crucifixion of Jesus is a one-time event that can never occur again in history. But it is an event which should never be forgotten.
We need to be reminded of what Jesus endured to prove to us that His way is the way into the Kingdom – that He IS GOD, not just someone telling us stories to make us feel good. Remembering Christ’s Passion, death and resurrection helps us get though our own daily sufferings and struggles – to spiritually grow from them. Because Jesus’ victory over death is not just physical death, but our road to victory over a spiritual death. “Spiritual death” can sound scary. But that’s what Jesus was talking about when He told Nicodemus “unless one is born again he cannot see the Kingdom of God (John 3:3.”) When we die to our old self, we rise to a level of spirituality, we are “born again” into a union with God.
Finally, St Paul said to “preach Christ crucified (1 Corinthians 1:23.)” In fact, many of Paul’s scripture writings are based on the sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross and His victory over death – physical death and spiritual death.
By reflecting on our daily struggles with Jesus hanging on the cross, we better understand what Jesus meant when he said to “deny yourselves, take up your cross, and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24). How can we be born again if we are constantly reminded of Jesus being dead instead of alive? The answer is found from what goes on inside our heart when we sit and reflect on Jesus hanging on the cross. When suffering comes our way, the image of the crucifix can give us spiritual strength and inspiration because of what Jesus did for us.
The image of the crucifix, is placed in our homes, our churches, our schools, or our hospitals, to make sure that this sacrifice of our Lord for us is not forgotten. It is a visual reminder of Christ’s battle over sin, the turning point in our spiritual battle, so we never forget God’s redeeming love for us.
May you have a Blessed week!
The Virtue of Hospitality and How It Open Our Hearts
When we think about hospitality, we think about opening our homes to friends and family. Maybe we host a book club or put a lot of effort into creating a home that is warm and welcoming. It is a lovely thing to be hospitable and to welcome people with kindness and affection. Last Friday, at the children’s Mass, Father Todd talked to the students about hospitality as a virtue. As a virtue hospitality means to open our hearts to others. It gives us the desire to be empathetic in the way listen and engage with the people we encounter throughout the day.
This works especially well when dealing with children. When we take a deep breath and understand that our children are far from perfect; that they are developing. Every mistake is the opportunity to learn valuable lessons. But it is really hard to learn when we are not fully understood. We all want someone to take the time to open their heart and listen with empathy.
Is there a hospitable way to resolve conflict? Can I take a minute to look at the situation from a different angle? What is going on with you? To ask and really listen with your heart. To not immediately interject your own words. Maybe, not put yourself into the conversation at all. If we are truly hospitable, we are open and attentive. We listen with the goal to understand fully where the other person’s mind is. To try to understand before we become hostile; the opposite of hospitality. Really listen and then pass on some good advice that will help children to make better decisions now that they know better.
By practicing hospitality as a virtue, we are gaining God’s grace. Everyone we meet is God’s child and has a soul that is divine. We know they have a unique way of looking at everything that is built from their experiences. Not everyone will think the way we do. I think sometimes people forget that. Hospitality gives each of us the chance to grow and learn in ways we would never think of on our own. With hearts and minds open, we can all earn our spot in Heaven.
Anne Atkin, Principal
UPCOMING BIBLE STUDY DATES:
Feb 20 – Sacred Heart 6:00 pm
Feb 21 – St. Mary on the Lake 10:00 am
*There will be No Bible Study during Lent
THE ALPHA OMEGA CARE CENTER
We will be participating in the Alpha Omega Care Center Annual Baby Bottle Drive fundraiser. Alpha Omega Care Center exists to empower men and women to may life affirming decisions regarding pregnancy through counseling and education and providing a safe and welcoming environment that projects the love of Christ.
You can help… simply pick up a bottle after Mass, fill it with loose money. If you would like to write a check, please make it out directly to Alpha Omega Care Center. Please drop off bottles to the Parish office by February 28.
For more information, please visit our website: www.alphaomegacc.org
Two opportunities are coming to attend a 7 week series: As By a New Pentecost, designed to help us grow in our under-standing of the Holy Spirit and how the Spirit acts in our lives and the life of the Church…Sacred Heart in Hudson (beginning Sunday February 24 from 1-3 pm) and St. Mary on the Lake, Manitou Beach (beginning Saturday, March 2 from 10 am-Noon). All are welcome! (Even if you attended a seminar in the past.) Great opportunity to meet fellow Catholics! To register please call Sacred Heart (517-448-3811) or St. Mary on the Lake (517-547-7496).
Have you considered using Online Giving? By creating a login and contributing online you’ll always have a report of your giving history available. You can access your giving report easily and securely via the web, and your information will always be up-to-date with your latest contributions.
ParishSoft is offering the Youth Scholarship Program. For every 25 NEW recurring givers, they will donate $200 to our Youth Program.
You can find the Online Giving link on our website: www.sacredhearthudson.org
Thank you Bishop Boyea.
K-6th grade students are eligible for $750.00 in grant money.
Diocese of Lansing Grant Deadline for 2019-2020 is March 1st.
Please join us at Sacred Heart School for
Taco Dinner & Information Night
Come for dinner and information about the state of the school and new scholarships. Be a part of our parent input session. Help us by giving your valuable input on how we can better serve your family!
Please see the attached documents to enroll in FACTS and the DOL application.
The Catholic Diocese of Lansing announces Tuition Assistance Program for Kindergarten to 12th grade.
Posted by Catholic Diocese of Lansing on Tuesday, February 12, 2019