Pastor’s Letter: October 22, 2023

Pastor’s Letter: October 22, 2023

Pastor’s Letter: October 22, 2023

20 Oct 2023 | Posted by: chadmin

Dear friend,

The Gospel this weekend has one of the more famous lines of Jesus, “Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” This passage invites us to have a proper perspective on the things of God and the things of the world. Of course God is the creator of the world, but things exist in the world that are the result of humans using their God-given gifts and talents. The concept of money within an economy is an example of humans using gifts and talents to develop a system of trade. All things of God ought to work for the good, but ultimately can be misused. A sin is a misuse of a good created by God. When Adam and Eve sinned by eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, it wasn’t the fruit that was bad, it was the decision to take something that God said was not for their good. The tree and the fruit were created by God, so they were good. It was the decision to selfishly eat the fruit despite the consequences. As the Pharisees approached Jesus in this reading, they identify Jesus as good, truthful, and not swayed by popular opinion. Because they knew Jesus to be a man of decisiveness and truth, they thought they could entrap Jesus to not care about the Roman command to pay taxes to Caesar. However, Jesus communicates that one who really understands truth doesn’t misuse the things of this world for any reason whatsoever. As we all seek truth in life and from God, the challenge is to have divine perspective in order to see what really if for the good. Daily prayer, attending Mass, and following our conscience will all lead us to choose the good and then say the words and perform the actions that communicate that good.

This week we had our annual Clergy Assembly Days at the Spalding Pastoral Center in Peoria. All of the priests gathered to discuss the Growing Disciples Pastoral Plan and some various aspects of Diocesan ministry. These gatherings are a good way for the priests to renew relationships and be reminded of our connection to each other in Diocesan ministry and the larger Church. Each priest receives an assignment from the Bishop to take pastoral care of an aspect of the Church. Our annual gatherings allow us some time to reflect on the interconnection between all of our ministries and assignments. The Growing Disciples Pastoral Plan is not only about right-sizing our local church, but also to reflect on ways the Diocese can grow in its ministry to our parishes. Bishop Lou hired Matt Faley as the Chief of Mission to help form the Diocesan Offices to better serve the priests and the people of the Diocese. Our growth is ultimately ordered to heaven. This calls us to constantly think of new ways to live and proclaim the Gospel to our culture. Please join me in praying for our Bishop, the priests and the ministry of our local church. We all face many things in the modern world, our conviction and dedication to the Truth is most important to daily conversion.

As a reminder, our annual school benefit auction is November 11, 2023 after the 4:30 pm Mass. The Auction Committee is working hard to get donations of items and monies to help the evening be a success for our school. We run the auction to help supplement the funding of programs at our school.  Hopefully you are able to join us for the auction night in person and help support the auction through your generous support.

God bless,

Father David