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User's Guide to Sunday
BY Tom & April Hoopes
Sunday, June 8, is the 10th
Sunday of Ordinary Time (Year A).
EPriest.com offers “Best Parish
Practices” for priests.
Sunday’s Gospel is about the call of an apostle. Father Greg Pleiness, pastor
of St. Augustine Church in Howell, Mich., has instituted a new way to help
today’s apostles hear their call.
family each week keeps and uses a “Vocation Basket” which they return the
following week. At the end of Sunday Mass, the congregation prays a prayer for
vocations while another family comes forward to receive the basket from the
pastor. In the basket are:
on the priesthood (including “Fishers of Men” by the U.S. Conference of
for parents on how to foster vocational discernment among their children, and
standing wooden cross inscribed with the words “Master of the Harvest”
its second year, Deacon Bill Sirl says a culture of vocations is already
developing, and one young man is “actively discerning the priesthood.” Find
many more details at the EPriest website.
6:3-6, Psalm 50:1, 8, 12-15, Romans 4:18-25, Matthew 9:9-13
EPriest.com offers free homily
packs for priests.
readings explore the virtue of integrity and authenticity, being honest in our
dealings with God. The great exemplar of this virtue is Abraham, who doggedly
stuck to his trust in God’s promise despite his trials and falls.
achievement is particularly impressive because he didn’t have all the trappings
of religion and the channels of grace to help him. We have the examples of the
saints, great Catholic literature, encouraging movies, the Holy Father,
publications like the Register and Faith
& Family, and above all the sacraments. Abraham only had God’s
whispered promise. But that was enough. By focusing honestly on what was
essential, he remained true to God.
Our attitude is often very different. When this
Sunday’s Old Testament readings tell us God wants love and not animal
sacrifices, we could dismiss it as if the Church selected this Scripture merely
to make a historical point. But the lessons are directly applicable.
often want to give God a significant sacrifice and be done with him — the
sacrifice of our time at church, perhaps, or the money we spend on a child’s
education or even the sacrifice of a significant volunteer activity.
But God wants our love. He doesn’t want a few
discreet sacrifices; he wants us to “follow him.” He wants us to apply his
criteria honestly and straightforwardly to our whole life, not just a part of it:
our work life, our social life, our leisure life, our family life, our
relations with our extended family and on and on.
doesn’t mean being a “holy roller” who talks about religion all the time. It
means being people of integrity and authenticity. Like Abraham.
The Hoopeses are editorial
directors of Faith & Family magazine