LET IT aLL sTART hERE
For Catholics who care...
Many of us have been transformed through Christ's involvement in our lives, and our involvement in His church. It is here that many of us have discovered what we have been searching for most of our lives, and, as a result of this, we want to share this found "treasure" --our joy-- with others. And, many of us have joined committees and groups at our parish to spread this Good News. Thus, we find ourselves wishing with all our hearts that: those who are wandering and lonely will come home. Still, we must remember that wishing is not enough, that prayer enjoys action.
The hope for the "prodigal" return is all well and good, but what steps are we willing to take "as Church" to create an environment that invites the lost and lonely home? Are we willing, so to speak, to walk our talk? Are we willing to give of ourselves, to others, the way Christ gives himself to us? Are we willing to make that effort?
I look around, and I see people in our community have many needs. I see people who are unable to recognize their own talents and charisms...so they remain unemployed. I see children who are raising themselves, because their parents are not much older than they are and they lack the proper training and life experience to grow a healthy family. I see people who have real challenges managing money because it is a life skill they were never taught.
These are only some of the problems that fill one's heart with despair. Often people who cannot cope, turn to drugs, alcohol and seek love in the "wrong places". They want to get numb, and to forget their unhappy lives for a while. I feel that this is where the Church can help the most.
If people knew they could find the support they need (not only money, but also training and positive energy) at the church, perhaps they would begin to trust, and would suspend their disbelief. And, perhaps, they would open their hardened hearts, providing The Holy Spirit an opportunity to enter.
And, then they would find their way home.
If we, as members of the church, would love them as their "Father" in heaven loves them; and, if we were to illustrate this through our own willingness to give completely of ourselves to build a HOME for them in our parishes...people would come back to church and would realize that this is where they belong. Then the cycle of love could begin again. The once lost and lonely could become Christ for others, as we once were for them.