News and Schedules - From the Pastor

Are you willing to join in the work of Jesus?

A one-legged school teacher from Scotland went to J. Hudson Taylor to offer himself for service in China. “With only one leg, why do you think of going as a missionary?” asked Taylor. “I do not see those with two legs going,” replied George Scott. Scott was accepted.

As today’s readings from Scripture teach us, the Lord wants disciples who will help with the mission of bringing Good News to others. In the Gospel passage, He calls two sets of brothers to be the first four Apostles, Peter and Andrew and James and John. He calls them from being fishermen to a higher calling—to be “fishers of men”. Jesus wants them to be His helpers for the work of bringing others into the Kingdom of God.

For St. Paul in the 2nd Reading, there is a real urgency to this task and calling. “The time is running out; …for the world in its present form is passing away.” The Prophet Jonah, in the 1st Reading, was sent by God with an urgent message to the people of Nineveh. “Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed.” The call to holiness in the Kingdom begins with a call to repentance, for “blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God.”

A student once asked a rabbi when he should repent. The rabbi answered, “One day before you die.” “But, what if I should die tomorrow?” The rabbi replied. “Then, repent one day before you die.” Ongoing daily conversion along with continual formation in the spiritual life will prepare us both to answer His call to serve Him now and to be ready to meet Him when He comes to invites “to enter into the joy of our Master.”.

Until that day arrives, Christ expects that we will do our part in building up the City of God. So Jesus says, “The harvest is great, but the laborers are few, so pray to the Lord of the harvest to send workers into His harvest.” From the day of our Baptism and Confirmation, each of us is expected to do our part. But, for this we have, the help of the Holy Spirit. Thus St. Paul says, “To each person the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”

While we are still at the beginning of the New Year, it is a good time to ask ourselves: “What am I doing, or what can I do to assist the Lord in His work of extending the Kingdom of God?” The Lord may want us to do something on a temporary or a permanent basis. The Church always needs not only the help of volunteers who will commit themselves for a time to service in His vineyard, but also men and women who will dedicate themselves to a life time of service as priests, permanent deacons, religious men and women.

Our parish of St. Mary Magdalen and the Archdiocese of Miami are no different.

Is God asking you for a temporary commitment of service or a permanent commitment in ordained or consecrated life?

Our parish itself needs more workers in the different ministries in our church. Because people have moved on due to work, education, sickness, or death, the number of our ministers has diminished. Especially in our Masses do we need more Extraordinary Ordinary Ministers of Holy Communion to help in distribution of the Eucharist; Lectors to proclaim the Word of God; altar servers to assist the priest; choir members to enhance our songs of praise; ushers to receive the offerings of the people.

So what does God want you to do to help Him?

He asked four simple fishermen to come help Him. Now He asks you to join in the mission of His Church. While you will receive no great earthly compensation, He promises you rewards that last forever.

Is that not what God bestowed on those four fishermen and all who have helped Him bring in His harvest?

Father Kirlin