An age old saying that is true for all time is that “Faith is caught, not taught.” Only when that gift of faith is first desired and longed for can it be requested in prayer from God. Only when it is received and acknowledged can it be given the opportunity to grow. The question remains, “How is faith caught?” It can only be caught through the sincere witness of true believers. It was because of the testimony of the first disciples of Jesus that others began to believe the news that He rose from the dead and lives forever. The testimony was not only carried out by word of mouth but by the disciples’ fearless witness to it. The belief in the Kingdom of God that Jesus came to preach made the first generation of believers fearless in the face of opposition even to the point of their own death. When others witnessed that display of faith in Jesus many were moved to ask: “How can I too believe in Him?” “I want some of what they have.” True faith motivates us to live the values of the Kingdom of God throughout our lives. Isaiah the prophet in chapter fifty-eight, our first reading, helps authentic worshipers of the one true God to achieve the values of God’s Kingdom not by severe fasting from food or bodily self-affliction but by engaging in deeds that benefit others in need and assist to give witness to the motivation for our actions. Many would begin to ask: “Why would someone be so generous?” “What’s in it for them?” If the motivation is sincere and comes from a heart that knows God’s personal blessings in one’s life and wishes to bless others as we have been blessed then that action speaks louder than any sermon or lesson plan. In the Gospel of Matthew we are called to be “Salt for the Earth” and “Light for the World.” We don’t achieve this goal by boring speeches and artificial rituals. Rather we witness to our faith by personal in-depth conversations, living and promoting the values of God’s Kingdom in our everyday life as well as ritual actions that are accompanied by true belief and a desire to share the richness of the gift of our faith. It is then that the faith will be caught and then fortified by what is taught.
MASS MOB WILL BE COMING TO ST. LAWRENCE PARISH to attend the 12:00PM Noon Liturgy on Sunday, February 26th, 2017. Though we are not in a historic building of the faith, the movement accepted our invitation in that we are a city community of faith who lives the Gospel through our many ministries and is worthy of support. The small congregation will welcome hundreds more for Mass that day and the collection will assist in the Parish Roof Replacement Project that is underway. Mass mob has a “Go Fund Me Page” that will remain active until their visit to St. Lawrence. On facebook: “Mass Mob XX at St. Lawrence” and “Roof Raiser for St. Lawrence” at www.gofundme.com