In last week’s homily I offered an invitation and challenge for each one of us. I asked each one of us to claim our baptism and live as a Disciple with a mission. For many, I imagine, this may seem foreign. What mission? Each one of us have been created for a purpose, and at our baptism and confirmation our Father gave us his Holy Spirit so we may have the grace to live that life for which we were called. I don’t know what you mission may be, but I can say that it is not simply to come to Mass for an hour, fulfill your obligation, and forget about your faith for the rest of the week. At the same time, most of us won’t be the next Sts. Therese or John of the Cross.
Seeking out one’s mission in life requires prayerful listening. Listening in order to hear God’s small still voice speak in our hearts and prayer that we may ask for the courage to do whatever we have been called to do. The discernment process then involves personally getting involved in things that strike an interest in us. In the course of time, we will be able to whittle down where our gift reside. Don’t let fear prevent you from trying out something new. You might be surprised that what you fear most is the place where you will find your mission and subsequent joy.
This Sunday, we have one of those opportunities to discern our mission. At 1:00 PM many will be gathering at the county courthouse for the annual March for Life. This event, whose cause is to end abortion through raising public awareness, is an excellent way to participate in one’s faith, make a difference in our culture, and reveal the evil that is perpetrated upon our most vulnerable, our unborn children. As Catholics, being pro-life is not an option. However, the way in which we participate in changing our Culture of Death into a Culture of Life is varied. Among all the various pro-life issues abortion is the most lethal of them all.
Another way to be active as Disciples in mission is by acting on the U.S. Bishop’s call to write our political leaders regarding the ongoing health care reform. The concern is again one of life. The bishops are guiding us to reject any legislation that would promote federally funded abortions while promoting affordable healthcare for all. I recently wrote to Sen. Jeff Merkley regarding this issue. He consequently sent me a form letter back disagreeing with me. So, I sent a response back which was recently published in our local paper. You can go to http://www.usccb.org/healthcare/ and learn more about ways you can help. Check out the flyer insert in this week’s bulletin as well. We will also put a link on our web site to help you easily send an e-mail to Congress.
Many of us are afraid to stand up for our faith. We are afraid of being called radicals or divisive. I agree that we can gather more bees with honey than with vinegar. But do not worry. Standing up for moral health care reform and the peaceful March for Life are loving ways to reveal the truth about our culture of death. These are ways to stir in your heart the Spirit who came upon you at baptism and called you to mission. Your participation in these events is also a way to do the same for others. Take a stand for the thousands of children who are killed every day through abortion. Help increase the opportunity for health care for all. Let God stir your heart. Consider the mission of the lives of the sick and innocent and act in solidarity with your fellow brothers and sisters for causes worthy of a few hours.
Fr. William Holtzinger