May 12, 2019

THIRD SUNDAY OF EASTER

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Christ Be Our Light

Follow our theme and review past reflections on our website www.stphilip.org

The Gifts of the Holy Spirit Light our Way
The Risen Christ commissioned the disciples and therefore us, to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News! Part of the Good News of Jesus Christ is the power of the Holy Spirit at work within us and among us. We are given all that we need to be the Light of Christ to others in our mission to love and to work for justice and the flourishing of all people.

As we journey through the Easter Season to Pentecost the same Holy Spirit that propelled the disciples to live their mission of Opus Christi, Christ’s Work enlightens us.

Through Baptism and Confirmation we are empowered with spiritual gifts. During this Easter Season we will explore thematically the Gifts of the Holy Spirit and experience them at work in our lives in new ways.

Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

  • Fear of the Lord (“WOW!” Awe, Wonder, Amazement) is awakening to God’s blessings freely given: in the beauty of creation, the truth of compassion deep within us, the goodness of loving relationships – recognizing that “All is Gift.”
  • Piety (Reverence) is living gratefully in a graced world with a profound respect for all life and a passion to be faithful stewards of God’s bountiful gifts.
  • Fortitude (Courage) enables us to dream of what is possible with Christ’s love. Fortitude emboldens us to take responsibility for that vision and to creatively make it a reality.
  • Right Counsel helps us to sift and sort in prayer what cannot be changed and needs to be accepted and what can be changed and needs to be accomplished.
  • Knowledge focuses our priorities and shifts our perspective to think, feel and act with faith, hope and love.
  • Understanding is seeing, feeling and listening with the “ear of our heart.” Understanding and compassion are God’s heart.
  • Wisdom enables us to discern and relish God’s presence in all things, to trust in Providence and to therefore live with compassion on the journey.

Week II – Gift of the Holy Spirit – Reverence
Piety (Reverence) is living gratefully in a graced world with a profound respect for all life and a passion to be faithful stewards of God’s bountiful gifts.

Need a Day between Saturday and Sunday?
Last Saturday Fr. Matt, Fr. Joseph and I walked over to the Greek Festival across the street and wandered through the Flea Market. Fr. Joseph noticed a glass coaster that read, “I really need a day between Saturday and Sunday.” We 3 priests laughed because the last thing we need is a longer weekend! However, for most people the weekend is a time without work and an extra day would make it all the sweeter. It has been observed that the sound for waking on a Saturday morning is AHHHH, Monday morning UGHHH. The good news is that our spiritual life and relationship with God offers us an extra day any weekend or any day of the week. We could call the extra day Prayerday. Prayer transforms every day into an adventure – an exciting treasure hunt as we seek to discover the gifts that can be found in every situation. Prayerdays are the keys that set us free from unnecessary worry and anxiety. In prayer, we recognize that all things work for good in every minute because we can trust in God’s Providence. Prayerdays turn our UGHHH’s into AHHHH’s whenever we desire to use our time, talent and treasure as faithful stewards by being love in action to the people around us.

Prayerday starts whenever we pay attention to our God who desires to be in relationship with us in every moment. Our prayerful attention to God in all things is the gift of the Holy Spirit called Reverence. Reverence is the gift that empowers us to turn any day into a Prayerday. In today’s Gospel, Jesus teaches us how to begin a Prayerday. Jesus invites us to listen carefully to the voice of the Good Shepherd who is gently calling us to experience a Prayerday. Sometimes our days and nights get off to a bad start; the good news is that we can restart any day at any time whenever we pray. In challenging circumstances we get in between any situation by adding prayer in thanksgiving, in petition or for the good of others.

The rest, the peace of mind, the freedom from anxiety, the opportunity to enjoy the people we love or to help people in need, the freedom from the burden of labor, the opportunity to praise God, worship and share our faith and community are all characteristics of the weekend. What a gift an extra weekend day would be any day of the week – this is possible when we hear the voice of the Good Shepherd gently calling us to make each day a Prayerday.

Reflection and Activity
The next time your day is feeling like an UGHHH listen for the gentle voice of the Good Shepherd who is calling you to pray. Ask our Lord to help you to start a new day. God desires to transform your day into a brand-new day – a Prayerday. Give thanks for your gifts. Pray for what you need. Reach out and become love in action for another person. Prayer can turn your UGHHH day into an AAHHH day – a Prayerday.
Need a day between Saturday and Sunday? Prayerday.

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