The Gospel and Our Response . . .

One measure of a country, a city, or a community is to look at their most vulnerable members. How do they live? How are those who are most in need cared for and assisted by those who are blessed with more? We, the parishioners at St. Mark’s Church, have responded generously to those needs in our own community in Greece through generous donations of food and monetary contributions that help our local food shelf feed those who would otherwise go hungry. We’ve responded generously to help those whose lives were impacted by the recent Hurricanes in our country ($7,728 for Houston and $5,073 for Florida). And these are only two examples of our generosity. This is how we live the call of the Gospel. Matthew’s Gospel tells us that we will be judged by how we feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, welcome the stranger, clothe the naked, care for the ill and visit the prisoner. And what we do for these least ones, we do for Jesus! We cannot love a God we cannot see, if we don’t love the people we do see! Our community at St. Mark’s is a generous community, especially when we see those in need! This year, our Catholic Ministries Appeal Goal has been increased to $75,693. Last year, we were short by $3,312 against last year’s goal of $72,189, so we have a challenge ahead of us. But we can make our goal this year, particularly if we make visible those people and ministries that are served by our gifts! If we could see those people who walk into one of the 10 regional offices/agencies of Catholic Charities throughout our 12 counties, I believe each of us would respond! Those of us who have given in the past would be motivated to increase our donation if we are able; and those who didn’t contribute last year would be moved to participate in some way. No gift is too large or too small! Catholic Charities helps people with disabilities and those who are living with significant health challenges. Picture in your mind a young child suffering with a chronic illness; perhaps mental illness, substance abuse, asthma, COPD, diabetes, or heart disease. This child’s family is helpless to deal with those challenges alone and Catholic Charities assists them with benefits, medical, housing, financial, educational, and other helps. Imagine this child who is now smiling and her family who are provided with an improved quality of life. They now have hope where there was hopelessness. And YOU are responsible for this new hope; because of YOUR donation to our Diocesan Catholic Ministries Appeal. May God bless you for your generous support of those most in need.

Deacon Frank