Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Saturday

The awkward God

What does the word "God" mean to you?  The controlling God that a parent figure may have shown you?  A distant God that does not have much interest in you?  A touchy feely God that your retreat going friends pester the heck out of you to meet?  A God that nations will go to war over?  A God too big for your comprehension? A God never to be talked about at a cocktail party?  A God who may only have interest in you if you do the right things at the right times? A loving God?  A God to be feared?  What?

My guess is that if there are ten readers reading this that there are ten different versions of God.  I may go further and guess that six or eight of these versions strongly feel that their view is the only "correct" view.  Most likely that is why we don't bring up God at a cocktail party.  Who needs the that kind of tension in their life?  

I too sometimes hesitate to bring up the word "God".  Yet I don't like to back down from talking about what a relationship with the Divine can bring.  I have had to find other ways to avoid the sometimes awkwardness of a varied outlook of God.  Enter the substitute wording technique of evangelizing.  

A few years ago somebody showed me the power of the word "energy".  I can talk about my energy at a cocktail party.  Nobody gets offended.  Often they will share their own assessment of their current energy.  

God after all is the ultimate energy.  God is energy.  God created all the energy of everything around us. We are only participants in this energy.  I can have good energy (code word for being in relationship with God),  Bad energy (not in relationship with God) , tired energy (the opportunity to seek relationship with God, or to continue chasing the ways of the world) ,  or no energy (the opportunity to surrender into the loving arms of God, or ignore God all together)  

Other words I like to use in certain situations:  the Divine, Creator,  the Everything,  Spirituality, Life purpose, reason for being, or ...


Steve Arendt

Friday, March 30, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Friday

Wake up, Jesus has something to say...

As we go towards the Superbowl of our Faith – Easter Sunday, we are launched into Holy Week which is the final chapters of the Greatest Story Ever Told.  The end of most books are usually the most poignant and carry the meaning of all the previous pages.  The final chapter is the most important, and wraps up the whole book.  Holy Week is the final Chapter.  When someone lies on their death bed, in the movies or in real life, they utter those final words to be remembered by.  They share those final words of wisdom, knowing they have run out of time to talk.  Christ saves his most important messages for Holy Week as well.

If we sleep through our faith all the other 51 weeks of the year, so be it.  Obviously this is not optimal in finding Jesus, but if there is ever a time to wake up to His presence, this week is it.

How does the devil feel about that?  He wants us to sleep right through it.  How does he put us to sleep?  He turns up the volume on worldly things.  The evil one is the great deceiver, so we need to avoid his traps.

He is trying to trap me with work.  I have been busier than ever, less successful that usual, and I am determined to get the work train back on the tracks, by putting the pedal to the metal, and to out work the work.  Nice try devil.  I will not fall for it (every time, but ‘yes’, I am falling for it most of the time).  The deceiver can’t let us hear Christ most important words.

Which words of Christ will touch us this Holy Week?

At the Last Supper:

  • “This is my body which is given for you...”(Luke 22:19)
  • “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood” (Luke 22:20)
  • “Unless I wash you, you will have no inheritance with me...Do you realize what I have done for you?  You call me ‘teacher’ and ‘master’ and rightly so for indeed I am.  If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another’s feet.  I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do.” (John 13:8, 12-15)

On the Cross:
  • “Father forgive them, they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34)
  • “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43)
  • “Woman behold your son...Behold your Mother.” (John 19:26-27)
  • “My God, my God, why have you forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46)
  • “I thirst.” (John 19:28)
  • “It is finished.” (John 19:30)
  • “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” (Luke 23:46)

After the Resurrection:
  • “Peace be with you....Why are you troubled? And why do questions arise in your hearts? (Luke 24:36-37)
  • “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” (John 20:21)
  • “Simon, son of John, Do you love me more than these?...Feed my lambs.” (John 21:15)


Chuck Forthaus 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Father's Promise

In follow-up to my homily this morning, I wanted to recommend this book.

Click here for link to

Dr. Scott Hahn is a Catholic Bible scholar who writes for a wide audience. I recommend any of his books!  This particular book focuses on God's promises to his people starting with Abraham and finding the definitive promise that God made to us, as both a Church and individuals, through His Son, Jesus Christ.

Peace to you.

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Thursday

In today's Gospel reading Jesus makes one final and veiled Revelation of himself and so sets into motion the events that will lead to his imminent arrest, trial, suffering, and crucifixion.

We will celebrate this reality on Sunday when we celebrate Palm Sunday. We will begin Mass outside of church with palm branches, and process into the church in the same way that Jesus entered Jerusalem on the back of a donkey. We will then proclaim the Passion account and so begin a week long journey through prayer into the Holy Days of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday, ending with the fullest Revelation of the Lord's Glory on Easter Sunday.

I want to extend a sincere invitation to you and your family: give serious consideration to celebrating the three Holy Days leading up to Easter by ending each of the celebrations on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

Each celebration begins at 7:30pm and each has a specific focus that brings into relief the whole of the Christian message of who Jesus is, who we are, and the destiny of both.

On Holy Thursday we celebrate the Institution of the Eucharist and re-enact the Washing of the Feet that Jesus performed for his Apostles. On Friday, we focus on Jesus' Crucifixion and are given an opportunity to venerate the Cross in a way that shows both our gratitude and our humility. At the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday we make our way through all of Salvation History by remembering the Father's promises given in the Old Testament that are fulfilled in a definitive way through the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus: promises that He made to US!

Give this some thought. I promise you that if you come and celebrate these three Holy Days with us, you will drawn into the great Mystery and Reality that is at the very heart of what it means to be a Catholic Christian.

Peace to you today.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Wednesday

As we prepare to enter Holy Week, and as I grapple with what BRIEF remarks I might make for Sunday’s homily following the reading of the Passion narrative, I ran across this wonderful piece.  It is written by a woman named Rebecca Frech, with whom some of you may be familiar from the blogosphere.  This piece is particularly poignant for anyone who has lost a child.

For your reading, then…

When Her Baby Died.
By Rebecca Frech

When I was a girl and even a young woman, I loved the Stations of the Cross during Lent. The prayers, the procession, the drama of the story, even the familiar smell of incense in the church would swirl me into the familiar litany. I could easily imagine myself a spectator for the great drama of Christ's last hours.

When I became a mother, my perspective began to change. I began to see the story through the heart of Mary instead. I was a mother myself and could well imagine all of her choked back sobs and smothering fear as she was forced to the sidelines, unable to protect her beloved son.

When my eldest son was still a tiny baby, I found that I could no longer make it through the Stations without tears streaming down my face. I ached for the agony of His mother. She knew the innocence of her sweet boy, and yet had to trust His Father completely.

How her emotions must have warred inside herself as she saw his public humiliation at Pilate's hands and heard her own people calling for the gruesome death of her child. These were her neighbors, her friends. These were the very people for whom her son was born. He was their Promised One, and they were screaming for his blood.

She saw him take the Cross into his battered arms. She knew from his face how great his pain and fatigue already were. Being no stranger to the reality of crucifixions, she knew what still lay ahead for him; she knew how far he still had to go. She was his mother, unable to touch or comfort her aching child. She witnessed his steady progress down the Way of Sorrows, watched her baby walking slowly, surely to his death.

I have listened to the priests recount his progress toward his triumphant end, and felt myself choking from her grief. To be a mother is to live with the fear that some horror will find our children. What a waking nightmare it must have been for her when it did.

When at last she got close to him and saw him face to face, what comfort did she offer him? What words did she say? Did she promise not to leave him? To give him that somehow magic presence mothers have? The way our children can be strengthened and find courage just because we are there? She saw her dying child, but she could not take him home. She could not wash away the dirt, bind his wounds, or kiss his aches away. Her baby was a man and she had to stand aside and love him to his death.

It is in the 5th and 6th stations where I can hear her pleas for him. Crying out to his Father, "He is your son and he's so him!" His Father heard her cries and sent Simon to help him bear the weight of his Cross.

Seeing his burdens lightened and his final steps eased, she wants only to see her beloved son. "He is my only son, let me see his face once more." and from the crowd, God sent Veronica to take her veil and wipe it clean.

Ever since I can remember, I have known this story with its villains and their plotting, the betrayal of friends, the reality of the Son of God crucified. It was only as an adult, a parent myself, that I discovered the other story of the Passion. How did I miss that in his moment of triumph, her baby died?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Tuesday

For all the introverts reading out there!

I once heard a story that I am not sure is true or not.  Yet, it was a story about being an introvert that spoke to me.  

Before Coke a Cola was found in the supermarkets the executive team was looking for a way to gain market-share.  They enlisted the help of a noted and accomplished consultant.  The consultant came to a few board meetings to understand the problem to be solved.  After that he was no where to be found.  The only trace of him were the request for reimbursement expenses send in from around the world.  After a long time he suddenly reappeared at a board meeting.   The board was fully expecting and anticipating a full blown report.  This man walked in and said two words and walked out.  This changed the course of Coke a Cola.  What did he say?  He said: "bottle it!"  

You see up until then all soda was sold out of the soda fountain the local dime store.  Bottling it allowed it to be sold just about anywhere.  

I am struck by this story because it shows me the power of solitude contributing to a greater good.  This man was a part of the community for a short time and discovered his most profound answers only through his time alone.  Christ did a similar thing when he often traveled to the desert.  It seems that he needed time away to have an effective time in community.  

Relating to this story was easy for me.  I see myself as an introvert.  It is not that I don't like being in a community or a crowd.  I do enjoy it.  Yet much of my energy comes from being quiet and by myself.  Then, almost out of nowhere, I get an urge to share that energy with those around me.  Only then the magic begins to happen.  The community feeds me and I feed the community.  

The flip side is that sometimes I am with a community and suddenly realize that I am struggling to give or receive any energy.  My tank is empty and my only desire is to find solitude.   For years I did not honor this calling.  I did not listen to my inner being and seek the solitude it was crying out for.  I would paste on a smile and pretend to be fitting in.  Yet the only thing I was doing was cheating myself.  My tank called spirituality was empty and needed re-filling.  

Re-filling for me means solitude or quiet.  

Now I have learned to start honoring my calls to be quiet.  Now I know that this is the time that God wants to be with me.  It is the time that God wants to pass to me the love and wisdom he so desires to show the world.    I have also learned that there are others just like me who will join me in community to share the love and wisdom that God has shown them.  I become a better man by embracing what these people have to show me.  The more I embrace my quiet the more rich my community experience is becoming.  

As this relationship of introvert and community is unfolding in my life , it only serves to remind me of the true power of my God who loves me.  


Steve Arendt

Monday, March 26, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 5th Monday


Am I afraid of hell? Or am I longing for heaven?)
Coming to the home stretch of Lent with Palm Sunday coming up next Sunday, followed by holy week, and then Easter is here.  As I see the light at the end of the tunnel of this Lent, I took a step back and was candid enough with myself to say, “Why have you given up caffeine for 40 days?”  I am a caffeine-aholic and I can say I have missed it.  So, why give it up for lent.  Why the almsgiving, Why the fasting, Why the prayer?  What is at the core of all these activities?

I found two questions at the core:

Am I afraid of going to hell?     OR     Am I longing to go to heaven?
I will suggest that we cannot answer “yes” to both questions.  It is true that both answers seem to get you to the same place, but the motives are entirely different and I think to be a follower of Jesus, motive is very important.  I believe that there is a transformation that happens throughout our lives that makes us less scared of hell and more longing for heaven.  One theme that I have been considering is the transformation that takes place from the Old to the New Testament how that is seen in going from the 10 Commandments in the old covenant to the Greatest Commandment of Jesus in the new Testament and in the new covenant.  Mt 22:37-39

The 10 commandments are there for the base, the “do not do’s” to keep you out of hell.

The Greatest Commandment:

 37 ...‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Mt 22:37-39)

These two commandments are the “to do’s” to get you into heaven.

I don’t need to lose the 10 Commandments, they are important, they are the rules that keep me out of hell.  But Christ, as the new covenant calls us to more to be in communion with him.  That calling of Christ for more, is the transformation that I need to align my actions, thoughts, words and overall being with God.  God’s grace gives me the direction to find it.  

What I heard on Sunday was the movement from an intellectual process of the mind to a soulful movement of the heart.  The “do not do’s” of the 10 commandments are an intellectual exercise that convince us that if we live up to the law,  we will not go to prison.  That is how society works even today, break the law, suffer punishment.  Logic cannot argue with staying away from punishment.

The first reading from Jeremiah on Sunday hit the transformational moment for me (or series of moments for me)(Jer 31:31-34).  My Bible has this section titled the New Covenant, and Jesus is the fulfillment of Jeremiah’s prophecy.  

Jeremiah writes:

says the LORD.
I will place my law within them and write it upon their hearts;” (Jer 31:33)

Those words, “write it upon their hearts”.  That is it.  The new covenant and the call of Jesus is not an intellectual exercise, it is a soulful calling on how to get closer to God, find God and be in communion with Him.  Most, would call that heaven.
So, at this time, I would have to say that I would still have to answer “yes” to both questions about the after life – that I do fear heaven, but I am longing for heaven.  Let’s pray that Lent tips our scales a little closer to have God’s covenant written on our hearts so that are actions and motives show that we are longing for heaven.


Chuck Forthaus

Reading 1 Jer 31:31-34

The New Covenant
The days are coming, says the LORD,
when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel
and the house of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant I made with their fathers
the day I took them by the hand
to lead them forth from the land of Egypt;
for they broke my covenant,
and I had to show myself their master, says the LORD.
But this is the covenant that I will make
with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD.
I will place my law within them and write it upon their hearts;
I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
No longer will they have need to teach their friends and relatives
how to know the LORD.
All, from least to greatest, shall know me, says the LORD,
for I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Saturday

Today’s Gospel is kind of a funny one.

It’s one of just a few in which Jesus says…well…nothing.  He’s not even really “seen” in the Gospel.  They only refer to him.

The guards who are mulling about, trying to determine if Christ is to be arrested, when they are challenged, say, “Never before has anyone spoken like this man.”

These folks are a confused lot.  Jesus is traveling throughout the land, working miracles and speaking to the people in radical ways which they don’t always understand, about things that they have never considered.  And they really aren’t sure what to make of him. 

Do we follow him, and risk being called --GASP-- a “follower?”  Or do we ignore him?  Or do we try to combat his unorthodox ways, bring charges against him and, if he’s a big enough threat, put him to death?

This is the drama that was Christ’s public ministry.  It was fraught with confusion over his message, frustration over his ways and, even if deep down you believed what he was saying, there was a real, serious threat if you went public with your allegiance to him.

Sound familiar?

I suggest that we, who sometimes feel at odds with those around us over our faith, sometimes even in those closest to us, listen to the words of the Psalmist cited in today’s Mass:

O Lord, my God, in you I take refuge.  Save me from all my pursuers and rescue me, lest I become like the lion's prey, to be torn to pieces, with no one to rescue me.  Do me justice, O LORD, because I am just, and because of the innocence that is mine.  Let the malice of the wicked come to an end, but sustain the just, O searcher of heart and soul, O just God.  A shield before me is God, who saves the upright of heart.  O Lord, my God, in you I take refuge.

Some days it really does feel like our faith, our religion, our cause and our mission as Catholics is under attack.  Guess what?  It feels that way because it REALLY IS under attack.  But we must allow Jesus, the “searcher of my heart and soul,” to sustain us, to guide us and to bring us a peace that the world cannot give.

Have a great weekend.  And, if I may ask you a favor…  Please pray for the Saint Louis Abbey Family today, as we bury our dear founder, Abbot Luke Rigby, O.S.B. this morning.  He was a gentle, wise and holy man.  And while I am so blessed to have known him, it is so hard to think of this Abbey without him.

Jube me venire ad te, ut cum sanctis tuis laudem te.

Bid me come to thee, that with thy saints I may praise thee.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Friday

Hello all,

So far this lent I have missed two of my scheduled Lenten blog post.  This bothers me!  I was asked to be on a board last summer to perform a very simple task.  To date I have not done much towards that obligation.  This bothers me!  And there are a few other things that bother me.

I have lots of excuses:
Work is busier than ever
I have been traveling a lot
My family needs some time also
I need my own down time
(here is a great one) I am active in my parish and isn't that more important!

At the end of the day the excuses don't matter.  The stuff is not done.  I take full responsibility for this reality.  I am ready to accept any worldly consequences that may result because of my shortcomings.

But my guilt goes beyond accepting worldly consequences. I am a recovering perfectionist. As a result in will wake up in the middle of the night with all sorts of screwy ideas of why I am less than perfect because I fell short.  My perfectionism can really get into my head.  It can mess with my day and my week.  Voices from the past screen out: EXCUSES DON'T MATTER!  And I carry it to another level by telling myself that I am less of a person as a result.  

I am not sure I will ever totally conquer my perfectionism.  However I can share with you my medicine for the dark moments.  Over time I have gotten relatively good about calming myself.  I get to a quiet spot and repeat what my heart knows to be true.  " I am a child of God and I am made in the image of God". By doing this, I allow what I know in my heart to overcome the knowledge of my mind.  The perfectionism of my mind can push my heart to the background. Getting God involved through my quiet time allows my heart to win the battle.  

I then go on.  I try my best to meet all my obligations and know that I will fall short.  How I react to falling short makes all the difference


Steve Arendt

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Thursday

It is upon us: the Weekend of Reconciliation!

There will be a priest available at Mary, Queen of Peace on:

Friday, March 23 from 7-9pm and then on Saturday, March 24th from 9am to 5pm.

If it's been while since you've celebrated this Sacrament of Healing and Forgiveness, come and be reconciled with the Father! He's waiting for you! 

Ain't nothin' to it: the priest will guide you through every step! 6 weeks, 6 months, 30 years... all are welcome!!

As we approach the Easter celebration, may Jesus come to you with His pardon and peace!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Tuesday

The following is a homily by Pope John Paul II given at the Easter Vigil Mass in 1996. It's a beautiful homily.

1. Lumen Christi!
"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it" (Jn 1:5). This is what the Prologue of John's Gospel proclaims, effectively summarizing the drama of the rejection of Christ from the moment of his coming into the World. But on this night, the night of Easter—according to the Scriptures and beyond any human expectation—the opposite takes place: the light overcomes the darkness.
This is the first symbolic act of the solemn Easter vigil: the deacon carries the candle, symbol of Christ the light of the world, into the Basilica immersed in darkness. From the "new fire" of this candle the flames of other candles are lit, and from these, little by little, the candles of all the faithful, until the church is filled with light.
Then the deacon sings the Easter Proclamation, which is the hymn to Christ our Light. During the night, praise is sung to the Redeemer, who from the darkness has led us into God's marvellous light (cf. 1 Pet 2:9).
2. "O felix culpa, quae talem ac tantum meruit habere Redemptorem! O happy fault, which gained for us so great a Redeemer!" (Easter Proclamation).
So great are our joy and wonder at the salvation which we have been given that the fault itself seems worthy of being blessed!
After all, what is the darkness, if not the symbol of sin and death?
And what is the light, if not the symbol of the life which conquers death?
The night of Easter, this "blessed night" (beata nox), is the witness of this victory.
"The three Marys went, carrying costly ointments to anoint Christ's body and to give him praise and glory. On the way they said to one another: The stone there is so large who will remove it for us?" (from an ancient Polish Easter song).
The women, the first to reach the tomb, saw that the stone of the tomb had been rolled away. And an angel appeared to them: "Do not be afraid; for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has risen" (Mt 28:5-6).
At Easter, symbols give way to reality: "The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it" (Jn 1:5): Life himself was killed, nailed to a Cross. But "in him was life and the life was the light of men" (Jn 1:4). And now in the Risen Christ that light finally shines. Lumen Christi. It was necessary that there should be "darkness over all the land" (Mt 27:45), so that the Light could shine in all its splendour. Life had to die, so that he could give life to all things.
3. During the Easter Vigil, the Church addresses the catechumens preparing to receive Baptism. She speaks to them using the words of the Apostle Paul: "Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.... If we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him.... So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus" (Rom 6:3-4,8,11).
These words resound in a particular way for you, dear brothers and sisters, who in a little while will be baptized and signed with the holy Chrism. For the first time you will approach the Eucharistic Table. My greeting goes to you with special affection!
In welcoming you, I wish to greet also the local Churches and the countries from which you come: South Korea France, Japan, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the United States of America and Viet Nam.
The light of Christ is for all peoples, and you, in this celebration, represent in a certain way the response of the nations of the whole world to the new evangelization.
In the fact that of the 10 of you seven come from Asia we can see a sign of Christ's and the Church's great desire to meet the peoples and cultures of that immense continent, so rich in history and noble traditions.
Let no one be afraid of the light of Christ! His Gospel is the light which does not bring death but which develops and brings to full maturity whatever is true, good and beautiful in every human culture. The Gospel of Christ is meant for man, for the life, peace and freedom of every individual and of all people. May you yourselves, dear catechumens, be witnesses of this, enlivened by the Holy Spirit who in a little while will be poured abundantly into your hearts.
4. Baptism means "immersion". being baptized means being "immersed" in the mystery of God's love which gushes forth from the pierced heart of the Crucified One.
In the liturgical year, the great Easter Vigil is the ideal moment for Baptism. During the Vigil, the symbol of light is linked to that of water and reminds us that we are all born again of water and the Holy Spirit, in order to share in the new life revealed by Christ's Resurrection.
"In him is life, and the life is the light of men" (cf. Jn 1:4).
O vere beata nox!
Night truly blessed which brings Christ's light to all people!
Night of limitless splendour shed the light of hope and peace on every corner of the earth!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Monday

Why Me?
I ask that at times.  Why do I have to do this?  Why is this happening to me? Many times I think that I am comparing my life to others, and they seem to be having an easier way than me.  I was told once the problem that I had in that comparison is that I am comparing my interior feelings and strives to the other person’s external appearance.  In reality, that person probably is going through as many internal challenges as I am.

We are spending the weekend down in Branson, Missouri that was hit by the tornado several weeks ago.  The community that we are staying in had the tornado go right through the middle of it.  To see the path and the destruction and the power of the storm is pretty awe inspiring.  It is humbling too.  Some trees hit, some missed, some houses hit, some missed, some houses with a little glass or roof damage, others totally destroyed.  When I spoke to some of the victims, they usually do talk about the pain of the devastation of their property, but most say, “but at least nobody got hurt.”  They are speaking that nobody was physically harmed, but their is a lot of pain that is still there.  There is also a lot of neighbor helping neighbor.

Someone I know was diagnosed with cancer this past year.  The initial shock was hard and he has fought valiantly and seems to have the upper hand in his battle with the big “C”.  In talking with him, the statement that I will always remember was when he said, “not why me, why not me?”  He told me that God put this in his life for some reason and he is going to have to figure out why.

The second reading to the Ephesians ends with this verse:

For we are his handiwork, created in Christ Jesus for the good works
that God has prepared in advance,
that we should live in them.”

Maybe this is why God puts tough times in our lives.  Maybe it is so we can empathic for others that are going through hard times and be the hands, face, and voice of Christ to those that are in need.  Maybe we can only understand the needy if we are one of the needy.  Someone once told me that the poor and needy carry a gift with them.  Each time we tend to their needs, receive part of the gift that they give to us.  Maybe that gift is what the Gospel spoke of today and the gift that Jesus gives to us this Easter, Eternal Life?

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him might not perish
but might have eternal life...

...But whoever lives the truth comes to the light,
so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.”


Chuck Forthaus

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Lenten Daily Dose - 4th Sunday

Hello all,
Sometimes it is good to ponder an understanding of God.  A deeper faith can result.

So here is my question:
 If heaven is a place without any evil, and human nature is a mix of good and evil.  How can a human ever make it into heaven?

Perhaps the best time to die is the half a second after a perfect confession!!!

If this were a real life verbal conversation, I suspect a whirlwind of outlooks would ensue.  I also know that there would be a good handful of plausible answers.

Yet I am not sure the answers are the most valuable part.  I invite you to ask more questions about your God and see where that journey takes you.  All I can say is that it will take you beyond an answer.

 Steve Arendt