This past weekend, our pantry opened up its door once again to the poor and need in our community. The Church’s love for the poor is inspired by the Gospel of the Beatitudes, by the poverty of Jesus and by his attention to the poor. This love concerns material poverty and also the numerous forms of cultural and religious poverty. The Church, “since her origin and in spite of the failing of many of her members, has not ceased to work for their relief, defense and liberation through numerous works of charity which remain indispensable always and everywhere”… with countless works of corporal and spiritual mercy. “Among all these, giving alms to the poor is one of the chief witnesses to fraternal charity: it is also a work of justice pleasing to God”, even if the practice of charity is not limited to alms-giving but implies addressing the social and political dimensions of the problem of poverty. In her teaching the Church constantly returns to this relationship between charity and justice: “When we attend to the needs of those in want, we give them what is theirs, not ours. More than performing works of mercy, we are paying a debt of justice…”
In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, as we consider the way that Jesus came that First Christmas in all poverty, we acknowledge our own poverty and need before the Lord of Heaven and Earth. Only when our poverty (of mind, body, material and spirit) meet his chosen poverty can we really enter into Christmas. Jesus, in the final days before your coming, we give you our unfinishedness of wrapping and decorating, our incompleteness of missing those who will not join us for celebrations this year, our holy longing for the warmth of your love, our moments where it is hard to forgive or love, our jealous and envious thoughts, our poverty of spirit.
With the Feast Day of the Holy Family always falling on the Sunday after Christmas, we want to have a Parish Rectory Open House on Sunday, December 27th from 12 -2 pm. Cookies, Punch and Egg Nog will be served. Come and share in fellowship for our celebration of this feast. Holy Family, Jesus, Mary and Joseph, Pray for us!