From Father George's Desk 11/19/23
In light of today’s gospel and with our national celebration of Thanksgiving this week, today’s gospel provides us an excellent opportunity to reflect on true Christian stewardship. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ pastoral letter, Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response, directly addresses today’s gospel reading to help explain how Christian stewardship and discipleship are inextricably linked: “The silver pieces of this story stand for a great deal besides money. All temporal and spiritual goods are created by and come from God. That is true of everything human beings have: spiritual gifts like faith, hope, and love; talents of body and brain; cherished relationships with family and friends; material goods; the achievements of human genius and skill; the world itself. One day God will require an accounting of the use each person has made of the particular portion of these goods entrusted to him or her. Each will be measured by the standard of his or her individual vocation. Each has received a different “sum”—a unique mix of talents, opportunities, challenges, weaknesses and strengths, potential modes of service and response—on which the Master expects a return. He will judge individuals according to what they have done with what they were given.”
Good Christian stewardship—investing our time, talents, and treasure—is required for us to confront our challenges and make the most of our opportunities. I look forward to working with Father John, Deacon Mike and the members of our pastoral and finance councils and the staffs to increase education and awareness of stewardship throughout our parishes. As we enter into this season of grateful thanksgiving, let us take some serious time and spiritual energy to be aware of how we have been blessed by God and how we can best use what he has given to us for the work we are all called to do.
There will be two opportunities this week to join in worship and praise of God for all of the blessings we enjoy. This (Sunday) afternoon, the Greater Latrobe Ministerial Association is hosting its annual Thanksgiving Service and Choir Festival at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church on Mission Road at 2:00PM with refreshments and fellowship to follow. On Thursday morning, Thanksgiving Day, Mass will be celebrated at 9:00AM at Holy Family and at 10:00AM at St. John. The Thanksgiving Collection will be designated to assist those in need in our community. While Thanksgiving is certainly not a holyday, I encourage you to make an effort to come to Mass that morning. What better way could there be to begin this national day of thanks than by celebrating the Eucharist?
Finally, as we all know, Thanksgiving Week is one of the busiest travel weeks of the year. Please be sure to include in your prayers this week all who will be taking to the roads, rails, and skies this week to spend this very special holiday with their loved ones! If you are going to be traveling this week, please be safe, enjoy your time with loved ones, and we will look forward to seeing you when you return!!