Blessed are they who have kept the word with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance. Luke 8:15
In reflecting on this passage, I am remembering the words of a wise spiritual director who once said:
‘Remember the Gospel you preach is also the Gospel you are called to live by.”
At each liturgy we hear the Word of God proclaimed followed by a homily reflection ending with the directive to go and live the Word of God. How simple a directive and yet how complicated! Our lives are filled with stories of generosity and perseverance. Our parishes and communities band together to ensure that the corporal and spiritual works of mercy are made visible on behalf of the needy and suffering.
In the past year our parish has had the opportunity to resettle two refugee families, a family of eight from the Congo and a family of six from Syria. The parish community continues to respond generously to the needs of our new families. We hope to resettle another family in the coming year.
Over the past months, we have also had the privilege to participate in special days of prayer focused specifically on two parish families and a staff member who were experiencing serious health problems. The spirit and reverence in which the faithful came together in prayer for others showed us we were indeed on holy ground.
We are called to be persevering gospel bearers in spite of adverse situations and complications from those rule keepers who focus on the black/white interpretation of the laws rather than the heart/human reality that surrounds us. We continue to march in solidarity for the oppressed and to write and call our government leaders, challenging them to govern wisely focused on the common good of all peoples.
We are sowers of the Good News! Despite the thorns of anxiety and greed, the rootless and rocky ground and the weed strewn garden path, the rich soil of God’s love for all of us indeed bears fruit and yields even more than a hundred or sixty or thirty fold!
Theresa Secord is a Pastoral Associate at St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.