Week of October 4, 2015

October is Respect Life month. The theme developed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is “Every Life is Worth Living.” Below is more on the development of the theme.

Whether it lasts for a brief moment or for a hundred years, each of our lives is a good and perfect gift. At every stage and in every circumstance, we are held in existence by God’s love.

Our relationships on earth are meant to help us and others grow in perfect love. We are meant to depend on one another, serve each other in humility, and walk together in times of suffering.

An elderly man whose health is quickly deteriorating: an unborn baby girl whose diagnosis indicates she may not live very long; a little boy with Down syndrome; a mother facing terminal cancer – each may have great difficulties and need assistance, but each of their lives is a good and perfect gift.

Experiencing suffering – or watching another suffer – is one of the hardest human experiences. But we are not alone. Christ experienced suffering more deeply than we can comprehend, and our own suffering can be meaningful when we unite it with his.

Jesus is with us every step of the way, giving us the grace we need. God invites us to embrace the lives we have been given, for as long as they are given. Every life is worth living.

You can find first-hand stories on “Every Life is Worth Living” on www.usccb.org/respectlife.

Following the news I become aware of the importance of this theme. There are stories of refugees fleeing Syria and the troubles they faced there; stories of children living in abusive homes; stories of people not being respected because of the color of their skin or the religion they profess; stories of people who go hungry every day. I wonder…what will help me to come to a deeper appreciation of all life? What can I do to show a deeper respect for others? What have I done this past week that shows every life is worth living?

Next weekend the Knights of Columbus are doing their tootsie roll drive. Proceeds go to help people with special needs.

I will be at our Priest Assembly at Lake of the Ozarks this week (October 5th – 8th). There will be mass on Monday and Friday. Wednesday there will be a communion service. Bishop Johnston is planning on joining us. I am looking forward to meeting him. Please keep all of us in your prayers.

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