1401 Valley Ave, Sumner, WA 98390
Phone: 253-863-2253 Fax: 253-863-3567
Our mission at St. Andrew Catholic Church is to become saints.
Following the example of our patron, St. Andrew, with humility we seek to:
Hear God’s call through the truth of the Catholic Church
Respond in love with acts of charity and mercy
Grow continuously through the sacraments and daily prayer and
Proclaim the Good News through our vocation.
“Rend your hearts and not your garments” (Joel 2:13).
With these insightful words of the prophet Joel, the liturgy introduces us into Lent today, indicating the conversion of the heart characteristic of this time of grace. The prophetic call is a challenge for all of us, without exception, and reminds us that conversion is not a matter reducible to outward forms or vague intentions, but engages and transforms one’s entire existence from the center of the person, from the conscience. We are invited to embark on a journey in which, in defiance of the routine, we strive to open our eyes and ears, but especially the heart, to go beyond our “little garden.”
To open oneself to God and to others: we live in an increasingly artificial world, in a culture of “doing”, [a culture] of the “useful”, in which we exclude God from our horizon without even realizing it. Lent calls us to “give ourselves a ‘shake-up’”, to remember that we are creatures, that we are not God.
Homily for Ash Wednesday by Pope Francis
With these words our Holy Father began his homily on Ash Wednesday. I too am struck by the words of the prophet Joel each year. As we go from day to day we fall into habits and routines. We tend to focus on our “little garden,” as he says, whatever that may be for us. We focus our attention on that which is attractive to us, not necessarily those who society find unattractive. Many in our society are neglected for this reason; they are unattractive and not “useful.” Where have we fallen into this trap that the enemy sets up for us? Have we failed to recognize Jesus in the poor, the elderly, the little ones which no one pays attention to? Take a moment to make an examination of your life and where this spirit may have crept in.
Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.
We have just been reminded of our mortality, “that we are creatures, that we are not God.” This reminder shakes us up and helps us to open our eyes and ears to the reality of our situation and as a creature of God, be more mindful of the gift of life that we have received and recognize how God is calling us to use it. In these days as we give ourselves to the disciplines of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, God reveals to us (if we are open) more of His plan for our life. As I mentioned on Ash Wednesday, all of our prayer and fasting must lead to almsgiving. You say, “I have nothing to give.” That’s a lie. You have much to give and no matter how rich you are you can give of the love that you have received and the greater the love the greater the gift.
The Corporal Works of Mercy
+Feed the hungry +Give drink to the thirsty +Clothe the naked +Shelter the homeless +Visit the sick
+Visit the imprisoned +Bury the dead
The Spiritual Works of Mercy
+Admonish the sinner +Instruct the ignorant (Especially those ignorant of God’s law and the teachings of the Church) +Counsel the doubtful +Comfort the sorrowful +Bear wrongs patiently +Forgive all injuries
+Pray for the living and the dead
Each day be mindful of these things and see how God may be calling you to share His great love with those in you encounter in the great garden that is our world.
In His most merciful Love,
Fr. Jack D. Shrum
For more of Father Jack's reflections click here