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† Patty Berg
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† Ann Dudik
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Mass for the People
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Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I've noticed something about the secular world in which we Catholics live today. That is, more and more, people who are hostile about faith believe that people who go to church or express their faith in any sort of substantial way are dangerous zealots. We are "dangerous zealots"?!?! The temptation is to be afraid of being labeled zealots. As a result of this fear, we may overreact and fall into the sin of spiritual sloth. We are constantly tempted to NOT allow ourselves to be excited about our faith, most especially if people are watching.

How often have you been told that religion is a taboo subject and not polite dinner conversation? Nonsense! It is nothing but a tactic to shut us down from the authentic joy that we have as followers of our Jesus.

Pope Francis has often talked about "anesthetized Christians" who have no apostolic zeal for the Gospel. In a homily he once said, "The church doesn't need couch-potato Catholics. She needs believers with "apostolic zeal," willing to preach the uncomfortable words of Christ!" And in a second homily, the Holy Father said, "The Lord always wants us to move forward, forward, forward ... not to take refuge in a quiet life or in cozy structures."

The temptation is to just keep quiet, not really grasping that at its core, Christianity, different from Judaism, has an outward thrust— "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you." Matthew 28, 19.

There is a clear difference between zealots and the virtue of zeal. We shouldn't be afraid of having zeal for the Gospel of Jesus Christ! St. Thomas Aquinas preached that zeal "arises from the intensity of love." Jesus once proclaimed, "Zeal for your house consumes me" (Jn. 2:17).

As we journey through Easter and head toward Pentecost, perhaps it is a good time to ask, "Are filled with zeal or are we lukewarm and halfhearted?" If it is the latter, perhaps we should rewind a bit and ponder the zeal of Jesus who died on Good Friday to afford us forgiveness of sins. His sacrifice should illicit fiery passion in each of us as we evangelize the lost in troubled world.

It is also said that zeal begets more zeal. Perhaps a good way to gauge our enthusiasm for our Catholic faith is to measure how excited others are when they experience our faith. What do our children see… or our spouses… or our neighbors? May we be alive in our faith during this blessed season!

God bless,
Fr. Don Kline

Celo

Queridos hermanos y hermanas:

Me he dado cuenta de algo sobre el mundo secular en la que los católicos viven en la actualidad. Esto es, cada vez más, las personas que son hostiles sobre la fe creen que las personas que van a la iglesia o que expresan su fe en cualquier tipo de forma sustancial son fanáticos peligrosos. Somos "fanáticos peligrosos"?!?! La tentación es tener miedo de ser fanáticos etiquetados. Como resultado de este miedo, podemos reaccionar de forma exagerada y caer en el pecado de la pereza espiritual. Estamos constantemente tentados a no dejarnos estar entusiasmados con nuestra fe, sobre todo si la gente está viendo.

¿Con qué frecuencia le han dicho que la religión es un tema tabú y no la cena cortés conversación? ¡Tonterías! No es más que una táctica para parar desde la alegría auténtica que tenemos como seguidores de nuestro Jesús.

Papa Francisco ha hablado a menudo acerca de "cristianos anestesiados" que no tienen celo apostólico por el Evangelio. En una homilía dijo una vez, "La iglesia no necesita católicos sofá-patata. Ella necesita creyentes con "celo apostólico", dispuesto a predicar las palabras incómodas de Cristo! "Y en una segunda homilía, el Santo Padre dijo:" El Señor siempre nos quiere seguir adelante, adelante, adelante ... no a refugiarse en una vida tranquila o en estructuras acogedoras ".

La tentación es simplemente guardar silencio, no realmente comprender que en su núcleo, el cristianismo, diferente del judaísmo, tiene un exterior thrust- "Id, pues, y haced discípulos a todas las naciones, bautizándolos en el nombre del Padre, y del el Hijo, y del Espíritu Santo, y enseñándoles a guardar todo lo que yo os he mandado. "Mateo 28, 19.

Hay una clara diferencia entre los fanáticos y la virtud de celo. No debemos tener miedo de tener celo por el Evangelio de Jesucristo! Santo Tomás de Aquino predicó que el celo "surge de la intensidad del amor." Jesús proclamó una vez, "El celo de tu casa me consume" (Jn. 2:17).

A medida que viaje a través de la Pascua y la cabeza hacia Pentecostés, quizás es un buen momento para preguntar, "Están llenos de celo o somos tibios y medias?" Si es esto último, tal vez deberíamos retroceder un poco y reflexionar sobre el celo de Jesús quien murió el Viernes Santo para nosotros dar el perdón de los pecados. Su sacrificio debe ilícito ardiente pasión en cada uno de nosotros a medida que evangelizar a los perdidos en el mundo atribulado.

También se dice que el celo engendra más celo. Quizás una buena manera de medir nuestro entusiasmo por nuestra fe católica es medir lo emocionado que otros son cuando experimentan nuestra fe. ¿Qué es lo que nuestros hijos ven ... o nuestra pareja ... o nuestros vecinos? Que podamos estar vivo en nuestra fe durante esta temporada bendito!

Dios los Bendiga,
Padre Don Kline

>>> Want to re-read one of Fr. Kline's past letters?

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