BECAUSE HE LOVED US FIRST
Gratitude and Prayer: Take 10 + 2 + Family
The basic principle of Christian stewardship is that everything we have is a gift from God. In gratitude for God’s generosity, we dedicate a portion of our gifts – especially our time – to encounter Him in prayer and the sacraments. If we truly believe that God gives us all that we have, gratitude is one response. Trust is another. When we realize that God has provided for us and will continue to do so, we recognize that our real security lies in God. God, who has given us all, will take care of our future.
But we, as a community of faith, must remember that we cannot give what we do not have. In order for us to welcome others into the life of the Church, we must first make sure that our spiritual lives are properly in order. In a busy society like ours, time is one of the most precious gifts we have been given.
Take inventory of how you spend the 168 hours of a week. Are you encountering Jesus in your daily life? Are you taking time to talk to Jesus in prayer, to speak with Him as you would a friend? Are you seeking His truth through reading the scriptures? Will you make Him first on your priority list so that you are able to give to others from the graces He has given you? Do you share the gift of yourself with Him?
Take 10: Personal Prayer
Each person needs to spend time with Jesus one-on-one. A daily heart-to-heart conversation with Him is the key to personal spiritual growth. Share your joys, heartaches, pains, wishes, regrets and desire to be closer to Him. He is waiting for you!
+2: Community Prayer
The Mass is the highest prayer of the Church and should also be the high point of our week! Consider making it your top priority to never miss a Sunday liturgy. In addition, spend an additional hour each week in the presence of our Lord in Eucharistic Adoration. Teach yourself to “Be Still” and hear His call to you.
+Family: Family Prayer
Pray as a family everyday! Take to heart the famous phrase of Fr. Patrick Peyton: “The family that prays together, stays together.” Choose times daily to pray with your spouse and children: bedtime prayers, a scripture verse at mealtimes, or a decade of the Rosary on the way to school, sporting events or work!
THE TRUTH: FAMILY FAITH AND THE ROLE OF THE FATHER
An Overwhelming and Critical Factor
The religious practice of the father overwhelmingly determines church attendance by his children.
Political Correctness Doesn’t Seem to Get Kids to Church
“The results.. are about as politically incorrect as it is possible to be, but they simply confirm what [many experts] and traditional Christians know.”
“If a father does not go to church, no matter how faithful his wife’s devotion, only [2%] will become a regular worshiper.”
Even if a father only attends church irregularly, 50% to 67% of his children will attend regularly or occasionally, regardless of his wife’s faith practices.
Fathers Have an Overwhelming Impact on Church Attendance
“Before mothers despair… her presence [at church] ensures that only a quarter of her children will never attend at all… Her major influence is not on regular attendance at all but on keeping her irregular children from lapsing altogether… A mother’s role will always remain primary in terms of intimacy, care, and nurture… No father can replace that relationship.”
Fathers Play a Critical Role
“When children see that church is a ‘women and children’ thing, they will respond accordingly - by not going to church, or going much less.”
A mother’s call to action:
If you want your children to attend church, make sure their father leadsthe way
PRAYER ACTION PLAN
Develop your own Prayer Action Plan using these guidelines.
Make an appointment for yourself everyday for 10 minutes of individual prayer. Schedule this time into your phone or computer calendar, and set a reminder alarm.
Plan ahead as a family as to when you will participate in Sunday liturgy. Are you traveling on the weekend? Do you have sporting events? Make a commitment to be intentional about keeping the Sabbath day holy by focusing on the sanctification of ordinary life.
The domestic church is where faith is primarily taught. Children learn to pray primarily at home from their parents. Plan together as a family how you will pray together each day.
Begin charting your course for a deeper spiritual life. Use these suggestions as inspiration. Set realistic goals for yourself and your family that will allow you to encounter Jesus and grow in relationship with Him.
Place Jesus first in your life, and do not let other priorities crowd out your time with Him.
Make Sunday Mass a priority.
Participate actively during Sunday Mass and Holy Days of Obligation by: arriving early for Mass; reading the scriptures before Mass; serving as a liturgical minister; spending meaningful time in prayer individually, communally and/or with your family each day by; reading the Bible or daily readings; praying at meals, even in restaurants; praying the Rosary or Chaplet of Divine Mercy once per week; Lectio Divina (reading and reflecting on scriptures).
Set aside time to grow in my relationship with Jesus by: returning to the Sacrament of Reconciliation or participating in this Sacrament once per month; attending daily Mass once per week; committing to a Holy Hour of Adoration; studying the Catholic faith with others; reading Catholic books/materials; attending retreats and parish missions; cultivating the fruits of the Spirit - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (c.f. Gal. 5:22).
Refrain from gossiping and complaining
Pray for vocations to the priesthood, religious and married life.
Invite a friend or neighbor to Mass and/or a parish event.
PRAYER MINISTRY SPOTLIGHT
Featured this weekend are prayer-focused ministries to help you grow in relationship with Jesus.
Imagine if you felt more balanced, peaceful and refreshed in the midst of all the world’s demands. That cross in your life? Imagine that it is no longer weighing you down like it used to. Are you looking for something that will transform you from the inside out? All you need is 60 minutes every week for a heart-to-heart with Jesus Christ! Let us show you how incredible the Eucharistic Adoration ministry is!
Contact Ben and Kristan Vrba at firstname.lastname@example.org or 612-564-8026.
Pray and Play
Thursdays, 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM, Nursery
We would like to welcome all caretakers of little ones to Pray and Play. Meet in the Nursery and let your children play while you chat and meet others in the parish. Each hours ends by spending 10 minutes in prayer to leave you all with a moment of grace before heading home to your families! If you are searching for an opportunity to spend time in the MHT Adoration Chapel, we will help! Your little ones can play in the Nursery while you spend your time in quiet prayer.
Contact Honor Miller at email@example.com.
Faith Share and Prayer Group
2nd Thursdays monthly, 7:00 PM, North Crying Room
The Faith Share and Prayer Group invites you to enhance your spiritual life by participating in a guided discussion and prayer time one hour a month - reading a scriptural or spiritual text, reflecting on its connection to your life, sharing thoughts, and bringing inspirations and needs to prayer. It involves a small-time investment with a significant impact. It’s a way to feel supported in your faith life. Try it out!
Contact Lynn Tursich at 952-925-0737.
Tuesdays, 8:00 - 9:00 AM
Jesus wants us to know Him personally. What better way to get to know Jesus than to read and meditate on His Word together in fellowship. Lectio Divina is a method of prayer dating back to a time when few owned bibles or knew how to read. We meet for an hour weekly to reflect on the Gospel passage for the upcoming weekend Mass as well as pray for the parish and your personal intentions.
Contact Mary Luxem at firstname.lastname@example.org.
33 Days to Morning Glory
Take a video journey with Father Michael Gaitley, MIC, through a six-week guided retreat. Father Gaitley explains the basics of Marian Consecration, how key saints lived it out, and how you can live it as well. With joy and simplicity, Father Gaitley gets to the heart of Marian Consecration through his book and his 30-minute talks. We meet once a week for six, 90-minute sessions plus approximately 10 minutes of reading per day. Groups areusually scheduled around Marian feast days.
Contact Maureen Wong at email@example.com or 952-927-0089.
We will learn how to respond as a disciple by serving others in gratitude!
Stewardship Renewal Packets
You should receive your Stewardship Renewal packet the week of September 24. Please prayerfully review this material and return your Commitment form during the special offering on Commitment Weekend, Saturday, October 27 and Sunday, October 28. Forms may also be returned by mail or in the offertory basket.