Don’t Forget the “Why”
A couple weeks ago, I mentioned that I and many other men are embarking on Exodus 90. This is an intense 90 day regimen of prayer, fasting, and fraternity. One of the things that Exodus 90 is known for is the commitment to cold showers, fasting like it is Good Friday twice a week, and committing to an hour of daily prayer.
In the day to day grind it can seem like rules and an exterior imposition. For example, I don’t drink a beer at a parishioners’ house because I’m doing this Exodus 90 thing and I can’t have alcohol. Brilliantly, the organizers of Exodus 90 often remind the participants to remember why they are doing this. Ultimately the goal is freedom. Freedom to love God and love each other in a more pure way. Participants of Exodus 90 are supposed to stay off social media. This frees us from technology addiction so we can interact with those around us. The goal is freedom.
It is always helpful to remember why we are doing something. For the individual who goes to a job day in and day out that isn’t meaningful or exciting, it is important to remember that he or she goes to work to support the family to provide a stable living for children and security for the family. It is important to remember why we are doing something.
The same goes true for the Beacons of Light process. I attended a meeting last week that reminded me of this truth. This parish renewal process is about renewing the Church in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. It isn’t a reorganization just for the sake of reorganization. Hopefully it reorients us to the purpose of the parish. We should ask the question: why is this parish here and what is the point of it?
In prayerfully asking these questions, we begin to glimpse God’s plan for our parishes. We realize that everything that we have and everything that we are is oriented towards glorifying God and drawing people into His Church. These parishes exist to help people become saints. If everything isn’t directed toward this goal, then we are misaligned and we need an adjustment.
The Beacons of Light process is more than parish reorganization. It is about orienting every aspect of parish life towards the Gospel. Sometimes this means that we need quality more than quantity. For example, we don’t need 15 mediocre ministries, but 3 or 4 really dynamic ministries.
These are exciting times to be Catholic. They aren’t easy times, but they are times full of divine potential. We are given the opportunity to renew our commitment to Christ and His Church.
A couple other matters. This bulletin is full of information about the Eucharistic festival. This will be a week to remember in our parishes. Thank you to everyone who is volunteering. We are incredibly grateful for your generosity. There will be different events every day, so please take advantage of this opportunity.
I want to give a big thank you to the Kleinhenz – Moeller foundation. Once again, this foundation has offered a very generous gift to all of our parishes. This year they gave monetary donations to all four parishes, two specified gifts for our youth ministry, and a gift towards young adult ministry. We are incredibly grateful for this support. It enables us to continue to spread the good news of Jesus Christ.
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Sean Wilson
Pastor of the Holy Face of Jesus Parishes