This Weekend Jan 19 & 20

  • From: "Marge Hickey" <marge@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <morningprayer@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 11 Jan 2008 14:47:33 -0600 (Central Standard Time)

From: Fr. Pat Umberger
Date: 01/05/08 11:27:41
Subject:  Weekend of 19 and 20 January 2008
=:  T H I S    W E E K E N D  :=.
     from Father Pat Umberger
I ' M    A T    G U A D A L U P E
I'll be in Mexico City from 07-18 January.  Keep me in your prayers, and
know you'll be remembered in mine as well.  I'll remember your intentions
remembered at Guadalupe, daily Mass and during visits to the many Churches
of Mexico City.  Margie, our Pastoral Minister, will send "This Weekend" in
my absence.  You cannot e-mail Margie by replying to this e-mail, but may do
so by e-mailing marge@xxxxxxxxxxx If you'd like to "unsubscribe" during this
time, just follow the directions at the bottom of this e-mail.  I cannot do
it for you during this time away.
.=:  V O L U M E   2 0 0 8 , Number 01-20 :=.
.=:  T H I S   W E E K E N D ' S   S C R I P T U R E S  :=.
Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A.
Weekend of 19 and 20 January 2007
Follow this link for this weekend's Scriptures:
.=:  R E F L E C T I O N   Q U E S T I O N S  :=.
"I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the
ends of the earth. How have we been a light to the nations? Who has
benefited by our faith? How have we personally, helped strengthen the faith
of those around us?
"Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will." If we honestly spoke these words,
what would the conditions be? Would we ever say them if we didn't know where
they might lead us?
"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ."  Why
are these such comforting words? What do they mean?
""Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. He is the
one of whom I said, 'A man is coming after me who ranks ahead of me because
he existed before me.'" How can we best stand before God? What should our
stance be? How can we be God's humble followers? What does that mean we
should do?
How are these readings challenging?  Comforting?
(c)MMVIII Fr. Pat Umberger.  These Reflection Questions are found each week
at the Web Site Feel free to link to this page or reproduce
them for parish use as long as this credit remains.
.=:  S P I R I T U A L   R E F L E C T I O N   :=.
Seed catalogs! What a wonderful surprise to find them in our mailboxes this
time of year. Mine arrived last week! The days are so short, the nights so
cold. Deprived of sunlight and fresh air we can get a little crabby. We can
find it very difficult to imagine green leaves and flowers and the warm  sun
on our face. Seed catalogs can go a long way to rekindle hope. We look at
all the varieties of seeds and plants available.  We begin to count the days
until it's possible to plant!  How wonderful it is to watch things grow!
What a joy too, to watch our children grow.  We have a basic trust that the
seeds we have planted will produce a legacy of love and faith.  How proud we
are when we see signs of this happening.
The Christmas season has passed. We begin those days of Ordinary Time, the
times in our lives when we seem to integrate those special days and perhaps
grow the very most. We are reminded by the Scriptures that we are part of
God's plan, always invited to share God's presence in our world. We can do
that haltingly at times. We find it difficult to fully appreciate the fruits
of our efforts. Sometimes it seems as if we're taking one step forward and
two steps back. Just when we see something wonderful developing in our
children they do something discouraging. We continue to hope!
Isaiah has such great hope in the next generation, that it will accomplish
dreams even beyond his own hopes. We hear John the Baptist express the same
thing. He speaks of one to come, "a man who ranks ahead of me, because he
was before me. Now I have seen for myself and have testified, 'This is God's
chosen One.'"
We can be tempted to leave God's work to "special" people like Isaiah, John,
Moses or Jesus. The fact is though, that God wants to build the Kingdom
through us! We do that as a family, as a community. The project we're called
to undertake is much larger than our individual abilities and will take
longer than our lifetime. What little we achieve will be part of a community
achievement, called forth by God and given with love and trust.
Isaiah says, "I will make you a light to the nations that my salvation may
reach to the ends of the earth." Paul tells the people at Corinth, "You ...
have been consecrated in Christ Jesus and called to be a holy people." The
call is there. We can't see the future, but we can hope for something
better. We can have faith that God will be with us and within us as we
strive to accomplish His work.
Like the seed, we are planted. God helps us to recognize our gifts and
talents and continues to call us to share them with those around us. God
helps us too, to recognize the obstructions within and around us and helps
us remove them. We find it exciting when we see the fruits of our labors,
but trust that if we do not, others will continue to strive for the goal God
has put within us.
As we pray in Eucharistic Prayer III, "May this sacrifice, which has made
our peace with you, advance the peace and salvation of all the world." Our
prayer is our hope. The common bond of the Eucharist calls us forth to love
and serve the Lord. We see God's kingdom grow as our young people express an
interest in priesthood and religious life. It grows too, when we look to the
future rather than lamenting the past. It's the hope found in our Community
of Faith. Life will go on. Things can get better. All we need to do is
listen to God's call and follow wherever it leads. Have a good week.
(c)MMVIII Fr. Pat Umberger.  This Spiritual Reflection is found each week at
the Web Site Feel free to link to this page or reproduce them
for parish use as long as this credit remains.

<MP>Morning Prayer is free, and comes from:
Father Pat Umberger, a priest of the Diocese of La Crosse
in Wisconsin U.S.A.
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