Dear LIGHT Friends,
I really enjoyed beginning our LIGHT Season together with our newly combined St Catherine and St Francis LIGHT Family! During last week’s opening Gatherings, we began to look at the seasons of our lives as one combined reality: secular seasons and liturgical seasons – not separate, but integrated as they should be. The scripture verse that we concentrated on from Ecclesiastes hit the nail on the head as we explored the seasons of our lives. And so the question that we left with “what season is my family in right now?” has been with me all weekend. As I ponder it, I’ve been thinking about my faith family as well as my neighborhood community. The season that I chose as mine is not listed in the verse made popular in recent decades (check out Exploring the Seasons and Footloose). But none-the-less, it is certainly a season worth contemplating!
It seems that wherever I turn these days, someone is putting themselves out there for a cause. Many people from the different communities in my life have recently walked for Breast Cancer, ran for Alzheimer’s, pulled a jet for MS, rode bikes to provide Cancer hope and healing, dumped ice water on their head’s for ALS, and danced the night away to send a kid to Camp.
The fall season has somehow become synonymous with giving in our society. And what a wonderful thing that is! Choosing our cause, raising money, training our bodies, gearing up, and then taking time out of our regular schedules to participate in something bigger than ourselves. To juggle our time to fit in one more thing. To discipline our bodies in order to make a difference. To put forth an effort that not only raises much needed funds, but also awareness for a cause.
The sacrifices that we make in order to participate also have the wonderful effect of putting us in solidarity with those who struggle with different diseases and conditions. How much easier is it to pedal up a steep hill, when you know that there is someone out there facing a true uphill battle against cancer. How much lighter is a 100,000 plane when you are pulling it to help a scared friend face a new diagnosis? How much more fun is a gala ball, when you know the hefty fee you paid to attend will help a kid with a heart condition go to camp for free next summer? Joining with a community to make a difference is part of what we are called to do as followers of Christ. We can do that for causes that are near and dear to our hearts, and we can also do that for our faith. And we should!
If for you this is a Season of Giving, think about what you can give to your church community? How will you share the gifts that God has blessed you with? Maybe you have a talent that can be put to use by our Youth Committee? Maybe you’d like to check out the Christian Action Committee and work with them to provide tangible, hands-on outreach to someone in need? Maybe you will remember the sick and lonely of our combined parishes in your daily prayers? Maybe you will prayerfully consider how much your family can contribute to the financial health of our parish budgets? Maybe you will pencil in regular weekend Masses on your family calendar so they becomes more of a priority in your schedule? There are many ways to make a contribution to parish life. It’s up to you to figure out which cause you will support (or even better: causeS)!
As one of my children has been fond of saying lately, “the struggle is real”. For so many, it is. But if we embrace a Season of Giving, maybe we can help to ease the burden just a little.
Enjoy your season!