This Week in Prayer, Service & Community
This week – July 21, 2016
This week in prayer:
Jesus said “no” to his dear friend Martha’s request for help. Sunday’s gospel depicts the kindness, the understanding and the clarity of His “no.” But why would He turn down such a seemingly valid request? Perhaps because the help Martha requested – cajoling Mary into doing dishes rather than listening to Jesus – would not have enriched Mary’s or Martha’s relationship with Jesus.
The first reading’s passage from Genesis, describing the heavenly guests’ visit to Abraham and Sarah, depicts several explicit and implicit requests for help. Each request elicited a “yes.” Why? Perhaps because each person who said “yes” suspected that a “yes” helped fulfill God’s hopes for the situation and ultimately lead Abraham and Sarah into deeper relationship with Yahweh.
The readings remind us it can be OK to say “no” when someone we love asks for help – as long as that “no” is rooted in the conviction that the help requested does not help fulfill God’s hopes for the people involved.
How about you? Looking back on moments when you concluded that “no” was the right answer, did you feel like your response aligned with God’s hopes? Even if, at the time, you didn’t use the language of “God’s hopes,” did you make your decision in terms of what you thought was best for that other’s relationship with Christ? Given your goodness and sound foundations, chances are you relied on the logic of God’s hopes even if you weren’t aware of it. Looking back now, can you see a few times when you said “no,” and your “no” glorified God?
- Listen to this week's homily, "To help, or not to help: Part two, what made Jesus say "no"?
- Read this week's readings
This week in service:
- Our parish is hosting The Interfaith Hospitality Network the week of August 7 to August 13. We have most of our bases covered but still need five people for overnight duty – to assist the Virtus-certified overnight hosts. The assistants arrive at 9, sleep in a quiet, private room and leave at 6. Most of the guests are single moms and their children. All of the guests have been vetted by IHN services. You will be very glad you supported the cause. Please contact Sid Lentz at 908-872-9279.
- Calling all Servers – It would be terrific if every server went to the parish web page, scrolled down to the “Affiliate” spot at the bottom of the Sesqui section, entered your email address and then checked “SERVERS” in the pull down list. It’s important to have your parents do the same so they receive copies of all emails the ministry sends you. As we clear the way for some upgrades in the scheduling and serving processes, it will be extremely helpful to have every server connected via the Flocknotes email system. Thanks!
- If you or someone you know is providing care for a loved one (or is working as a paid caregiver), mark your calendars for the caregivers morning of recollection on September 10. Details to follow.
- Three cheers or more for all the people providing meals to the Quesada family as their home undergoes the renovations (the JQ Project) that will make it much more user-friendly for James.
- Congratulations to Vince Kral and all who helped him collect 326 pairs of glasses for people in poor countries – another amazing Point of Light Project.
- All best blessings for the 42 folk packing off to Catholic Heart Work Camp!
This week in community:
- Giant thanks to all the ushers who completed First Aid and CPR training this week. You have been very generous with your time and your generosity makes our church a safer place.
- Bravo for the youngsters watering all the plants by the solar panels. Yahoo!
- Enormous thanks to Peter Hoefele for installing all the trim around our church’s front doors. Peter’s Church Improvement Project has made ours an even more beautiful house of worship.
- Kudos to Jeremy Goldstone for installing the fence at the back of the St. Francis Garden. Now that it is deer-proofed, the Girl Scouts garden improvements promise to be even more long-lasting and consoling.
- Apologies to those graduates who went unacknowledged. The glitch resulted from a pothole in our information highway. A few people who signed up somehow fell off the list when we retrieved it. Your bibles await you on the Hospitality Room Mantle. All best blessings to all our graduates.
- SAVE THE DATE – PARISH PICNIC SUNDAY, September 11. It promises to be even more fun than last year. Yes the water rides will return and yes – croquet – AND several new sports – and more food.
- SAVE THE DATE – SESQUI CLOSING PARTY – Friday, October 7.
- SAVE THE DATE – SESQUI CLOSING MASS – with Bishop Checchio Saturday October 8, 4:45 pm.
All best blessings
Fr. Hank, SJ