July 16, 2017
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Great news! On Tuesday, we received final approval from Bishop Gainer and the College of Consultors to move ahead with the next phase of our Legacy Project. Additionally, through God’s grace and your overwhelming goodness, we were able to raise, in additional pledges, the $500,000 vital for this $2,120,800 project! Thank you so very much!
This weekend, I invite you to generously welcome our Missionary Cooperative speaker, Fr. Juan Sierra, from the Institute of the Incarnate Word. Also, please, please, please sign up to have your photo taken for our new directory! Without you, it’s not really “Our Parish Directory.”
The Greek word for parable is parabolē which is a translation of the Hebrew word mashal, which in turn literally means a riddle or a proverb. Therefore, when we hear Jesus’ parables, we should be looking for a twist or something unexpected. In an agricultural community, it would be obvious that the first twist in this weekend’s Gospel is that the sower of the seeds isn’t so bright or much of a farmer. Who in this world would waste expensive seed on a path, rocky ground or among thorns? Well, we learn that this seemingly careless sower is in fact Jesus, Who, like His heavenly Father, is blatantly lavish in proclaiming the Good News to all people, not just those who are already “good soil.”
The second unexpected detail is the fruitfulness of this seed in good soil. An average harvest in the first century A.D. would have been seven-and-a-half-fold; tenfold would have been an exceptional harvest. Thirty, sixty or a hundredfold would be miraculous. And of course, this is the point. It’s not even an exaggeration when looking at souls that have come to God as a result of the fruitfulness of holy lives, like St. Benedict, St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Francis, St. Teresa of Calcutta and St. John Paul II. Saints are truly good soil!
So what kind of soil am I? In our Catechism, paragraph 2705 mentions the soil of this parable when speaking about meditation. “Christians owe it to themselves to develop the desire to meditate regularly, lest they come to resemble the first three kinds of soil in the parable of the sower.” In other words, we too can be fruitful soil by pondering His Word and the mysteries! (Please read CCC 2708 on meditation.)
Catechism Question of the Week: True or false? All members of the Church, including her ministers, must acknowledge that they are sinners. That until the end of time in everyone, the weeds of sin will still be mixed with the good wheat of the Gospel. Hence the Church gathers sinners already caught up in Christ’s salvation but still on the way to holiness. (see CCC 827)
With family, friends and those you meet, please discuss the following Question of the Week: How can I recognize the weeds from the wheat in me and in the world around me?
In Christ’s Peace,