Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time – October 29, 2017

Dear Parishioners,

St. John Chrysostom once said, “Do you wish to know if the people of any place are righteous? Look what sort of a pastor they have. If you find him pious, just and sound, believe the people will be the same, for they are seasoned with the salt of his wisdom.” This teaching reveals to us that a priest’s work in a parish is not just running around organizing things and people, balancing parish and school budgets, preaching, celebrating the sacraments, and in short, ‘doing things’ and staying busy. St. John Chrysostom says that a priest’s role within the community goes much deeper, that actually there is a profound spiritual connection between a priest and the community in which he serves. Priests dedicate themselves to growth in the spiritual life and personal holiness, and the community should follow through his example, teaching and inspiration. The presence of a priest within a parish community and in the life of the Church is essential. May Our Lord raise up many and holy priests to serve in His vineyard!

This weekend we celebrate Priesthood Sunday. It is a special day set aside to honor the priesthood in the United States and a day to reflect upon and affirm the crucial role of the priesthood in the life of the Church. We should all pray for vocations to the priesthood because priests do not suddenly ‘materialize’ in the heavens somewhere and beam down to earth. Rather, they come from families, from our families. There is a family in our parish with five children, three of whom are currently either in religious life or in some stage of preparation to enter into religious life. I asked them what their secret was and they said that they pray daily for their children, together as a couple, that they may follow God’s will wherever it leads them. They also pray together as a family almost every night and make weekly Mass a priority. It seems almost natural that a religious vocation would spring from this sort of prayerful and faithful environment within the home. This is great advice for all parents, to pray for your children to be open to God’s will, whatever it might be; to pray together frequently as a family and make Sunday Mass a weekly priority for everyone. When children see and experience an active prayer life in and through their parents, it will make a lasting impression upon them and most certainly inspire them to consider a vocation if Our Lord calls them.

Queridos Parroquianos,

San Juan Vianney una vez dijo eso sobre el sacerdocio; “Un buen pastor, según el Corazón de Dios, es el tesoro más grande que Dios puede conceder a una parroquia, y uno de los dones más preciosos de la misericordia divina.” Nosotros sabemos que cuando hay una parroquia sana, santa y vibrante, hay siempre a su corazon, un sacerdote sano, santo, y vibrante. San Juan nos recuerde en esa cita que la presencia del sacerdocio en la vida de la Iglesia y de la iglesia particular es esencial; si la Iglesia no tuviera sacerdotes, tampoco tendría los sacramentos, de Eucaristia y ella no existiría.

Este fin de semana celebramos en los EEUU el Domingo que se llama Domingo de Sacerdocio y recordamos hoy la importancia de la presencia del officio del clero en la vida de la iglesia y también la importancia de rezar por mas vocaciones al sacerdocio. Hay una familia en nuestra parroquia que tiene cinco hijos. Increíblemente, tres de ellos actualmente están en la vida consagrada o en los inicios de la formación. Esperan que sus dos hijos restantes sigan viviendo en el país seguiendo los pasos de sus hermanos. Les pregunté cuál era su secreto. Dice que diariamente rezan juntos como pareja para que sus hijos sigan la voluntad de Dios, donde los lleve. También rezan juntos como una familia casi todas las noches y asistir a Misa semanalmente es una prioridad. Parece casi natural que una vocación religiosa pueda surgir en este tipo de oración y en ambiente fiel dentro del hogar. Esto es gran asesoramiento para los padres; a orar por sus hijos a Dios para que sigan la voluntad de Dios lo que podría ser, para orar juntos con frecuencia como una familia y asistir a la misa seminal como prioridad para todos. Deseo que ¡Que muchas vocaciones broten en nuestras familias!

In Christ / En Cristo,
Fr. Cal Christiansen

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Author: Very Rev. Cal R. Christiansen

Fr. Cal R. Christiansen is Pastor of St. Pius X Catholic Church in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

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