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Experience the Joy of Following Christ
What does your relationship with Christ look like? Do you see Jesus as simply a great teacher? A prophet? A man of great wisdom? Or do you see him as more? Jesus calls us to be more than simply believers—he calls us to be his disciples and his friends. Do you consider yourself a disciple and friend of Christ? The Gospel of John shows us that God became like us; he became a man so that we could become like him and grow closer to him. Follow Me: Meeting Jesus in the Gospel of John is your guide to a personal encounter with Christ.
We will begin Follow Me on November 6-7 through December 11-12 at three different times:
Monday 9:30 – 11:30 am
Monday 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Tuesday 6:30 – 8:30 pm
For more information or to register for the study, contact Barb Woods in the Parish Office or at 515-210-6649. The book fee is $ 16.00.
Sunday, December 10, 2017
2nd Sunday of Advent
Friends, today’s Gospel compels us to come to grips with the great Advent figure of John the Baptist. It’s really impossible to grasp the significance of Jesus without passing through the cleansing bath of John the Baptist. He provides a lens through which Jesus is properly interpreted.
John, we learn today, made his appearance as a preacher in the desert of Judea. Deserts are places of simplicity and poverty, places where distractions and attachments are eliminated—and hence where the voice of God can be heard. Wealth, pleasure, power, honor—and all of their avatars and priests—are shouting at us, luring us, tempting us. But what is God saying? We have to go to these silent and deserted places in order to hear.
What is the first thing that the prophet says? We read in another Gospel that he says, "Reform your lives!" In other words, "Repent!" This word cuts to the heart of every one of us, precisely because we all know that our lives are not where they are supposed to be. We have all fallen short of the glory of God; we have all fallen into patterns of self-absorption and addiction. So let us hear John’s word today: "Repent!"
Monday, December 11, 2017
2nd Monday of Advent
Friends, our Gospel for today tells that wonderful story of the healing of the paralytic. People gather by the dozens to hear Jesus, crowding around the doorway of the house. They bring him a paralyzed man, and because there is no way to get him through the door, they climb up on the roof and open a space to lower him down.
Can I suggest a connection between this wonderful narrative and our present evangelical situation? There are an awful lot of Catholics who are paralyzed, unable to move, frozen in regard to Christ and the Church. This might be from doubt, from fear, from anger, from old resentment, from ignorance, or from self-reproach. Some of these reasons might be good; some might be bad.
Your job, as a believer, is to bring them to Christ. How? A word of encouragement, a challenge, an explanation, a word of forgiveness, a note, a phone call. We notice the wonderful urgency of these people as they bring the sick man to Jesus. Do we feel the same urgency within his mystical body today?