Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - September 14 Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Dear Parishioners:

A principle for effecting change in our world these days that you may have heard is “Think globally, act locally.”  This idea suggests that the way to change the world is to start within ourselves and close at hand.  We have to learn to see things from a broader perspective even as we work within our own sphere of influence.  This idea puts into our hands the simple truth that each one of us always has the power to make a difference.

The Baltimore Catechism that taught many how to express the Catholic Faith in succinct ways gives some answers that remind us to keep the broadest possible vision in view:

Q. Who made you?

A. God made me.

Q. Why did God make you?

A. God made me to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world,
and to be happy with Him forever in the next.

With these questions and answers at the beginning of the Catechism, the Church places before us the realization that we belong to God and that God has a plan for us.  That offers us a perspective as broad as you can get – from the point of view of God Himself.  When we start there, everything else is put into proper perspective.

Why does the Church encourage some sorts of behavior, such a fidelity, honesty and integrity?  Because it expresses who God creates us to be.

Why does the Church say “no” to some behaviors and activities that the world applauds or invites us to do?  Because they are not in accord with God’s plan for us or with His reason for the realities involved.

One way to change the world, and to cooperate with God’s efforts to prepare us for life with Him in the next, is to accept the disciplines of the Church so as to learn and develop the virtues that free us to live for God.  We all have “family rules.”  The Church is a family that has its rules.  We may complain about the rules and wish they were different than they are.  But if we follow them, we will discover that we reach our true goal more quickly.

As the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross reveals to us, Christ Himself became obedient, even to death on the Cross.  For this very reason, He was highly exalted and became the Redeemer of the world.  By loving in the face of rejection and suffering, He lifted us up to a capacity for Life with God.

When we work to shape our thoughts with the mind of Christ and His Church, we open ourselves to a new way of living.  By living now in accord with the Love revealed through the Cross of Christ, we become sharers in divine life and bring Hope to the world.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - September 7

Dear Parishioners:

We have experienced a number of deaths in our parish family lately.  Some long-time and active parishioners have been called Home and many families in our parish have lost close family members elsewhere.  Our Bereavement Ministry and Resurrection Choir have been working overtime.  We are very blessed to have such a compassionate community to be present to those who experience the loss of loved ones.

It seems an appropriate time to offer a few notes that may be helpful to all of us as we look toward planning for the day we will come to the end of this life’s journey.  I have personally been edified by the preparations offered by those who have died that have made the experience - not quite easier - but simpler for those left behind.

At the moment someone you love dies, it is hard to think, so often families are not sure just what to do.  Having a list of who should be contacted is helpful.  Please be sure to list the St. Timothy Parish Office (451-2671) among those who are notified.  In fact, if you or someone you love is ill, let us know early in the process. 

The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick and Holy Communion, at home or elsewhere, are very consoling to those who are ill and to their families.  “Last Rites” include Confession and Absolution (with the Apostolic Pardon), Anointing, and Holy Communion as Viaticum.”  Since we know not the day nor the hour, we ought not to miss the opportunity for the touch of Sacramental Grace.  The sooner we know, the sooner we can assist the family as well.

Planning for the Funeral Services include a few details:  What Funeral Home will you use?  It is best to choose one that is very familiar with the Catholic funeral rites.  The Catholic Funeral includes three sites:  A Prayer Vigil at the Funeral Home, Mass at a Catholic Church, and the Rite of Committal at the Cemetery.  The preference is to have the body (which served as a temple for the Holy Spirit) present for the time of visitation and for the Funeral Mass.  If cremation takes place, then the cremains are kept intact and a Rite of Committal can take place later.  If cremation takes place before the Funeral Mass, then the cremains may be present at the Mass and Committal follows.  It is considered disrespectful to “sprinkle the ashes” of a human being in various locations or to divide them.  Our own human nature needs to have a place to “visit” where the loved one’s earthly remains are to be found.  Interment in a cemetery or columbarium is the Catholic practice.

On the day of the Funeral, our parish offers the option of a Bereavement Meal following the Funeral and the Service at the Cemetery.  The team need to know an approximate number of attendees expected.

In recent times, families have been grateful that their loved ones picked out Readings and songs for the funeral beforehand.  A booklet for this and a guide to the songs that may be chosen are available in the Parish Office.

Sometimes there are things you wish you could say to loved ones that they are not able to hear due to life’s complexities.  A letter left with your funeral preferences and plans can be very consoling.  Write a letter to those left behind and let them know that you have thought about them experiencing this moment of grief.  It will help more than you can imagine.

The Bereavement Committee tries to keep track of loved ones who have died through the course of a year in order to remember them on All Souls’ Day each year.  If you lose a family member, even if the funeral is held elsewhere, please let us know so that person’s name can be in the list for the All Souls’ Mass of Remembrance.  This year we will have that celebration at the Noon Mass Sunday, November 2nd.

To all families who have lost loved one, we offer our sincerest condolences.  We recall that for those who have Faith, death is not the final word.  Life is changed, not ended.  We will meet again in the Kingdom. 

Eternal Rest grant unto them O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them.  May they rest in peace.  Amen.  May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed rest in peace. Amen.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - August 31

Dear Parishioners:

Certain themes are emerging for us at St. Timothy Church.  “Welcome” continues to present itself as something for us to attend to.  How do we welcome newcomers among us?  How do we help all who have been here all along to realize that they continue to be welcome even as new members join us?  How do we respond when for whatever reason we have not felt welcome ourselves?

Our Christian life is based on the understanding that God is welcoming us into a share in His Life.  Our responsibility as disciples of Jesus is to accept this welcome and to share the news of the invitation.  So often, we are so caught up by the many concerns and worries of our lives that we forget to enjoy the magnitude of this invitation.  We are chosen by the Living God to experience His Life, now and forever.  Time and Eternity are intermingled for us.

As the new academic year begins, we renew our efforts to share our Faith with the next generation.  Our Parish School (St. Timothy School) and the Parish School of Religion (P.S.R.) are open for business.  Our Revolution Youth Group has been very active through the Summer and has begun a new venture called YDisciple to deepen understanding and commitment in such a way as to help them negotiate the transitions that can lead away from practice of the Faith.

The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (R.C.I.A.) is also ready to begin.  Do you know anyone who is interested in exploring our Faith?  Are you ready to go deeper into your own discipleship with the Lord Jesus?  How is your own commitment to Faith and understanding of the richness of our Catholic heritage growing?

 
 

As you no doubt have heard, Fr. Bill, Mr. Mosholder and Fr. Tim participated at School in the “Ice Bucket Challenge” that went out on Facebook from the St. Timothy Youth Group.  Please be sure that any donations go to the John Paul II Medical Resarch Institute and not to any other organization that supports fetal stem cell research.

Here is the link to the JPII Medical Resarch Institute in case you need it:

http://www.jp2mri.org/about.htm
Note: we have to be very careful about some of the on-line challenges and to research carefully ourselves the designation of funds for such challenges. Sometimes groups are not very selective about causes that are supported.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - August 24

Dear Parishioners:

We welcome all who are with us at the beginning of the new School Year.  To all returning: welcome back.  To all newcomers: Welcome to St. Timothy! We are glad you are here.

Welcome is the theme of the month.  God welcomes us into His Family through the Church and the Sacramental Life we share.  We are to respond to the welcome we have received by being welcoming to others.

According to the speaker Matthew Kelly, whose books many have read, there are four characteristics of Dynamic Catholics that are the sign of their real involvement in the life of the Catholic Church: Prayer, Study, Generosity and Evangelism.  Dynamic Catholic are those who pray, study the Faith, are generous with their time, talent and treasure, and who share their Faith intentionally with others.  How do you rate?  This is not something that anyone else needs to measure.  You can discover it within your own person.

Do you prayer more than perfunctory prayers?  Do you have a place for prayer in your home?  Do you participate in the daily and weekly rhythm of the Prayer of the Church?  Is prayer something that you do as a regular part of your life?

Have you come to realize the riches of the Catholic Faith?  Do you study Scripture, Tradition and the ongoing teaching of the Church?  Do you know the Saints and the writings of spiritual authors through the ages?

How generous are you?  Do you tithe your resources, giving to God His due before you make use of time, talent and treasure for your own benefit?  Do you put your money where your Faith is?

Have you begun to speak of your Faith to others in your family and beyond?  Who has come to know about Jesus Christ through you?

Please read through the bulletin and discover how you can strive in our parish to become more dynamic in your practice of the Faith.  Ask the Holy Spirit to lead you and your family to witness the Faith more truly.

As many of you know, this week I passed a landmark in my own life’s journey, reaching the age of 55.  That means I am now old enough to be considered and “elder.”  Thanks to all who have sent cards and birthday wishes.  God bless you!
 


2014 Young Catholic Woman of the Year:
Maya Steller of
St. Timothy Church
with Dr. Kathy Lutter, 2012 Catholic Woman of the Year
and President of St. Timothy Women’s Club
 
We are very pleased to announce that our own Maya Steller was chosen as the 2014 recipient of the Young Catholic Woman of the Year award for the Diocese of Columbus.  Maya and her family were present at a banquet Sunday August 17 along with Bishop Campbell and many women throughout the Diocese of Columbus.  We congratulate her and thank her for her witness.  St. Timothy Parish is proud of Maya and all those who work to build up the Kingdom.
 
A Stewardship Challenge

A family in St. Timothy Parish who learned of our deficit in Stewardship for the past couple of years has volunteered to donate $25,000 to offset expenses for the 2013-2014 fiscal  year and to move us toward being current with our bills.  They suggest that other parishioners may be willing to donate to Parish Stewardship – funds for our ordinary needs in the life of the parish.  Are you willing to take up the challenge?  Your extra gift to Stewardship in response to this challenge would be gratefully accepted.  Meeting this anonymous donation with an equal amount would help a lot!  Mark your envelope with “Stewardship Challenge” or make an online gift at https://sttimothyoh.weshareonline.org/StewardshipChallenge .  Thank you!

 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - August 17

Dear Parishioners:

Faith is meant to be shared.  “I believe in God” is a statement of a relationship that has consequences.  It is not something private.  It is not a matter of taste or preference.  It is a commitment that requires a movement that takes place both in the heart and in the world.  “I believe” is an act of trust in the Power that is behind the very existence of the universe and in the Grace that transforms the “stuff” of this world into the substance of the world to come.

As we prepare to enter into a new year of School and a new season of Religious education, I invite you and your family to make a new act of Faith together.  Let God be truly the Lord of your life.  Change your priorities.  Review where you have been in regard to practice of your Faith.  Remember where we are all headed.  And choose to be true to your Profession of Faith.  Does every member of your family know that your family belongs to God first?

We have a church building.  All of us are expected to be there together at the very least once a week (for Sunday Mass), sometimes twice depending on the timing of Holy Days of Obligation.  We have a school building and parish center where most of the community spends at least a few days a week for education and recreation.  A third dimension of our life together happens here and there, but not necessarily with much intentionality:  the reality of Catechesis, the process by which the Faith we profess is incorporated into the fabric of our lives.  In the months and years ahead, we will be giving more attention to this aspect of our life together.

"Catechesis is nothing other than the process of transmitting the Gospel, as the Christian community has received it, understands it, celebrates it, lives it and communicates it in many ways." (General Directory for Catechesis #105)

As a Parish Family, we are called to Worship, to Education, and to Catechesis with and beyond our community.  The Good Shepherd will lead us as we seek to follow Him.  Let us together discover how our act of Faith is meant to change the world.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - August 10

Dear Parishioners:

This past week  (August 4th),  my father, Thomas Hayes, celebrated his 80th Birthday.  My family was gathered together at Myrtle Beach for a bit of vacation.  I made plans to join them for the birthday and so took a few days this week to be away.  Time with family is important and so I am glad to have the chance to connect with my family on such occasions.  Growing up with a big family we never used to have the opportunity to go very far.   In those days, we either had “staycations,” long before the term came into use, or we went only as far as Pittsburgh to spend time with family there.
 
 

Preparations for being away and ensuring that everything is covered while I am gone is a challenge.  Let this be my thank you to all of you who step up to cover details in my absence:  to Fr. Bill for taking care of the daily Masses and to all who assist in any way.  I will be relying on you again, I am sure!

This week, we will celebrate the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  I always delight in this Feast.   It offers us a vision of hope in a world that can forget our high destiny.  Mary, the mother of Jesus, is a human being.  Her cooperation with the graces offered to her opened for us the way to salvation and the gift of a Living Relationship with God beyond anything we could ever have ask for.  The privileges and graces she received are a foretaste and promise of what God has in store for all those who love Him.  The Lord’s gift to Mary is a reminder that the Resurrection of Jesus has made a difference in our human nature itself.  Assumed into glory with her Son, Mary is given a share in the Resurrection, showing us that God can do for us what He has promised.  May we open our hearts to the action of His grace as He calls us to glory.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

A Word from Your Pastor - August 3

Dear Parishioners:

 We have had some wonderful experiences of Faith lately in our parish.  Last weekend, our Summer Seminarian Intern, T.J. Lehigh led a group of parishioners in an experience of the New Evangelization, taking the Message of the Gospel into our neighborhoods.  On the Feast of St. Martha this past Tuesday, a group of parishioners gathered to share discussion about the Spiritual Life, speaking with each other out of their wealth of experience of life in the Lord.

Our world is in a state of crisis.  We are called as Christians and Catholics to be concerned about the state of the world and to do what we can to make a difference.  Steve Jobs, founder of Apple Computer, suggested that “the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.  Faith is not crazy, but it does involve a way of thinking that the world rejects as foolish.

The Gospel is God’s response to our human needs.  It invites us to live with our eyes set on the goal, the prize beyond anything this world can offer.  Faith is our capacity to respond to the Gospel with our whole persons.  Now is the time to step out in Faith.

As we enter another month and move toward Fall, begin to consider how you will live this next year differently than last.  Are you ready to make a difference in the world by making a change in your own exercise of your Faith?  Our world is hungering for the Gospel.  Jesus invites you to “Give them something to eat yourselves.”



St. Timothy Parish Door-to-Door New Evangelization Club July 27, 2014
Back Row:  T.J. Lehigh, Ryan Fisher, Karen McGirty, Larry Lorms, Kathy Spyker, Mark Gideon, Nancy Schell, Chris Yakkel 
Front Row: Ellen Miller, Lea Guarasci, Edna Whitacre, Dolores McGroarty 
Not Pictured: Judy Lorms, Dr. Kathy Lutter