Fr. Tomy Homily, November 4 2018

SUNDAY 31ST WEEK YEAR B

The central message of today’s readings is the most fundamental principle of all religions, especially ChristianityGod Himself tells us that we are created to love God in loving others and to love others in loving God. In other words, we are to love God living in others.

The first reading reminds us to love God by keeping His commandments. It also describes the blessings reserved for those who obey the commandments. The second reading tells us how Jesus, the eternal and holy High Priest, offered Himself as a sacrifice on the cross to demonstrate God’s love for us. Today’s Gospel teaches us how we should return this love by loving others.

We are commanded (1) to love God, (2) to love our neighbor, and (3) to love ourselves. We are to love God, for it is in loving Him that we are brought to the perfection of His image in us. We are to love our neighbor and ourselves as well, because both of us bear God’s image, and to honor God’s image is to honor Him who made it. We are to love our neighbor and our self as a way to love God: God gives us our neighbors to love so that we may learn to love Him. It means sharing with others the unmerited love that God lavishes on us. This is the love for neighbor that God commands in His law.

Loving with all of one’s heart is a truly radical challenge, in imitation of Christ. But it is our Christian vocation. For we believe that life comes from death, that gain comes from loss, that receiving comes from giving, and that Jesus himself had to die to come to the fullness of life. We profess to be followers of one who made a complete offering of himself to the Father and spent his energies and his time in the service of others, who returned to his Father devoid of any earthly goods.

If I am going to love God with all my heart, soul, mind and strength, then I have to place His will ahead of mine. This means that I may have to say no to some things that I might want to do. It also means that I am going to have to seek the Lord’s will and make it paramount in my life. Taken together, loving God means we open our hearts, give Him our will, develop our minds, direct our emotions, use our bodies and deploy our resources in ways that reveal our love for Him in active, loving service of everyone we encounter in our lives.

Since every human being is the child of God and the dwelling place of the Spirit of God, we are actually giving expression to our love of God by loving our neighbor as Jesus loves him and us.  This means we have to help, support, encourage, forgive, and pray for everyone without discrimination based on color, race, gender, age wealth or social status. If I am going to love my neighbor as I love myself, it will cost me as well! I may have to seek forgiveness when I think I have done no wrong. I may have to sacrifice something I think I need to meet a brother’s need. I may have to give up time to help someone. I may have to spend time in prayer for people, go to them, and reach out to them in the name of the   Lord. Love for our neighbor is a matter of deeds, not feelings.

Nicole Oyola, a 23-year old from Clearwater, told Fox 13 that she suddenly pulled to the side of the Howard-Franklin Bridge outside of Tampa on Thursday when she spotted a man on its edge. “I started talking to him. I told him, you’re worth it. You’re enough,” Oyola said. “I don’t know what you’re going through, but I love you and God loves you and everything is going to be okay.”

He looked at me, and  after he looked at me he started crying and I said, “I just want to give you a hug”. So he came to the other side and I gave him a hug. “God has a purpose for everyone”, she added “I believe in that, so I stopped. I just wanted to help him feel better.

This is what Jesus is asking from you and me today. Love God and love our neighbor. Loving our neighbor doesn’t mean we have to give lot of money or our material possessions. But a kind word to the one who is depressed, sad, disappointed, distressed and feel confused will bring transformation in that person’s life.  In this incident, the woman didn’t give any money to that man but she shared with him what God has given her the great gift of LOVE. When she said those words, there was a total change and transformation in that man’s life. His attitude was changed, there was change of decision and there was a change his outlook toward life. So let us also do the same to our needy brothers and sisters. Amen.

Online Giving

 

Thank you for your continued support of Sacred Heart Parish! We would like to remind you that there is an option to simplify your giving by enrolling in our Online Giving Program.

Click here to access the Online Giving Software.

Gala Update

Be in Our Heart Gala

Click here for Sponsor and Ticket Opportunities

Tickets are $100 and can be purchased at the school, on our Facebook page or from our sellers.   Call 448-6405 or email aatkin@sacredhearthudson.org with any questions. We now have dinner tickets available for $40.00 a piece. These also include 5 Luxury Raffle tickets.

Thank you so much for all of your continued support. I hope we have put together an evening you will truly enjoy!!

Fr. Todd All Saints Day Homily, November 1, 2018

 

Reading from 1 JN 3:1-3

Beloved:
See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God.
Yet so we are.
The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed.
We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.
Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure, as he is pure.

Gospel MT 5:1-12A

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him.
He began to teach them, saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.”

Bulletin News, November 4 2018

Altar Rosary Society

Will meet Monday, Nov. 5th at 1:30 pm in the Church basement.  All ladies of the Parish are welcome.  Any questions please call President Jan Wilson  517-306-0684

 

 

Cafe

Want to learn more about your Catholic Faith?  Join us for CAFÉ, Sundays at 9:15am in the Parish Hall.

 

 

Share the Warmth volunteers update

The homeless shelter still needs the following shifts filled:

  • Nov. 12 – female for the night shift 11pm-7am
  • Nov. 13 – night shift
  • Nov. 14 – breakfast and female on night shift
  • Nov. 15 – female night shift
  • Nov. 16 – laundry greeters (6p-11p) and female on night shift.
  • Nov. 17 – laundry male greeter (6-11p) and female night shift.
  • Nov 18 – need all shifts (except for food service)
  • Nov. 19 – breakfast shift

Please contact Deacon Gene Hausmann, 517-937-9042 if you are able to assist at any of the available shifts.  Thank you.

 

 

Life in the Spirit Seminar ~ St. Anthony – Hillsdale

Send your Holy Spirit to form our parish as a community of missionary disciples.”

It’s not too late to join!  Session 2 is Thursday, November 8.  Choose 1-3 pm or 7-9 pm.

ALL are welcome! (Even if you missed Session 1).

Questions? Call the Parish Office 517-437-3305 or Maria Ansett 517-523-3526.

 

 

Deacon Corner, November 4 2018

Why do we use candles in church?  The word “candle” comes from the Latin verb “candeo” meaning to shine, glow, or burn.  We use candles on the Altar, near the tabernacle, during our liturgies, for votives and devotionals to name a few.

The Paschal Candle is unique and easy to recognize by its size.  It can be several feet tall and decorated with ornate images, a cross, and the liturgical year.  At the Easter Vigil, a new Paschal Candle is lit and blessed in expectation of Christ rising from the darkness of the tomb to the light of the Resurrection.  During the Vigil, people light small candles as a reminder to reflect the Light of Christ in their lives.  The Paschal Candle is lit throughout the year for Baptisms, funerals, and during the entire Easter Season.

Using candles on the Altar began sometime before the 12th Century.  These candles not only remind us of the Light of Christ, but also of the many persecuted Christians in the first centuries who secretly celebrated Mass at night or in the catacombs with the only light being candle light.  It was the fortitude and perseverance by those Early Christians that helped our Faith survive and thrive into the 21st Century.

The Sanctuary Candle is seen near the tabernacle in the Church to remind us of Jesus’ Real Presence in the Eucharist.  It has its roots in the Old Testament when God commanded the Israelites to burn an oil lamp before the Tabernacle of the Testimony, which is the tent where the Arc of the Covenant and sacred vessels used in worship were kept (Exodus 27:20).  If this lamp signaled to the Israelites a sacred presence, then how much more aware should we be of the holiest space in a Catholic Church – the tabernacle – where God is truly present in the Eucharist?

We light votive and devotional candles before images and statues of Jesus, Mary, and the saints not as a sign of worship, but as a symbol of our light of faith in asking God for help.  The flame of these candles is symbolic of the fires of Old Testament offerings of burnt sacrifice, petitions, adoration, or reparation of sins.  Although we see these candles in church, we can also use them in our home for prayer.

There are many more uses of candles in our faith, too many to list in this limited space.  But while we can certainly pray and worship without candles, the physical act of lighting a candle touches our human senses to help bring our entire self – body, mind, and soul – closer to God.  Candles are a part of our rich Catholic tradition used to represent the sacred character brought into our prayers and liturgies by Jesus Christ – the True Light.

For “God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness…If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:5-7.)”  May you have a Blessed week walking in the Light of the Lord.

Deacon John

Adapted from CatholicCompany.com

 

Fr. Todd Bulletin, November 4 2018

Dear Sacred Heart Family,

This past Monday I experienced a first in my life.   With two of my brothers, we harvested and processed horseradish.  I think my sinuses will remain clear for the rest of the year!

This week we will have a Mass of Remembrance at both parishes.  This is a great way to start November, the month in which the Church focuses in a special way on praying for our deceased loved ones.  All are welcome to attend.

  • Sacred Heart on Tuesday, November 6 at 6:00pm
  • St. Mary on the Lake on Thursday, November 8 at 6:00pm.

The reality of death is a hard one.  Often, we don’t know how to approach it.  This month I want to look at the Christian’s response to death.  It is fourfold;

  1. Grief
  2. Remembering and learning from our loved ones
  3. Prayer
  4. Realizing God’s providence.

This weekend I want to focus on grief.  We need to remember that grief is a good thing, although it can be incredibly painful to go through.  In the wake of the September 11th attack, Queen Elizabeth II wrote this to families who lost loved ones “Nothing that can be said can begin to take away the anguish and the pain of these moments. Grief is the price we pay for love.”  The fact that we grieve reveals the fact that we first loved and were loved.  To grieve means that something is right, not wrong.

Many of us are familiar with the five stages of grief – denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.  It can be helpful to see these steps because they can articulate what we are going through.  The danger though is that thinking grief is a cut and dry process.

There is nothing lockstep about this process – people do jump from one stage to another and then back again and that is perfectly okay.  There is no timeline for grief and the is okay too.  What is important in all of this that we permit ourselves to grieve.  For as painful as the process is in whatever form it takes it is meant to be healing.

Paul told the Thessalonians “We do not want you to be unaware, brothers, about those who have fallen asleep, so that you may not grieve like the rest, who have no hope.  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose, so too will God, through Jesus, bring with him those who have fallen asleep.”   (1 Thess 4:13-14).  In the midst of our grieving we need to lean on the Lord.

If you need more support we are blessed with grief support groups offered through Catholic Charities – www.catholiccharitiesjlhc.org/adam-grief-and-loss .  Support groups meet at Catholic Charities’ Jackson location (3425 Francis Street, Jackson, MI). There is no cost to attend. This ongoing group meets each Wednesday evening, beginning with a 6:15 p.m. potluck dinner and followed by grief support groups from 6:45 to 7:45 p.m.  Groups are held for children (age four and older), teens, and adults.  Those interested in attending can call Catholic Charities at 517-782-2551.

This month let us lift up in prayer anyone who is grieving.

God Bless,

Fr. Todd