Dear Holy Rosary Alaska Mission Parishioners, here are a few announcements:
Congratulations: Congrats to Pat Shryock from Naknek, Alaska. The 16 year old flew solo in their Cessna 172, Thursday, October 14, 2010, at South Naknek. Pat actually flew solo in the airplane before receiving his drivers license. After Mass Sunday I asked the young aviator about his first solo flight. The young Pat said, “I was REALLY excited.”
Gospel: The Gospel this week asks us to ground ourselves. Grounding makes us humble. The arrogant Pharisees need to be grounded. (Please see homily and readings below).
Potluck: The potluck will be Sunday, October 31, not Sunday October 24. Please bring your favorite dish and join in a good time after Mass, downstairs, at Holy Rosary Parish.
Confirmation: If you know of anyone between the ages of 10 and 100, who are baptized Catholic yet have not been confirmed, please let me know.
First Communion: A first communion celebration will be Sunday, May 22, 2010. If you know any children who are six or seven years old and have not had First Communion, please let me know.
Have a fantastic week and see you Sunday, Fr. Scott
HOMILY: 30Ord C DLG, 2010, Grounded, Sir35:12-14,16-18;2Tim4:6-8,16-18;Lk18:9-14
Have you ever been grounded as a child? It’s not fun…no phone, no internet, can’t drive the car, can’t go out with your friends…etc. A teenager is basically shut down from the most important thing in their life at the time…friends and socializing.
We are grounded for a reason. The reason is, we start to act like the Pharisee does in the gospel. Being grounded equates to doing something that is a bit out of the ordinary. Doing something that is not good, such as being reckless, immature, or immoral. In the Pharisees case, he was arrogant. The Pharisee needed to be grounded.
The Pharisee was a successful person but he let it go to his head. He made himself feel important by putting others down. In prayer, he reminded God just how great he was compared to others. He trusts too much in himself and very little in God.
In football, intentional grounding is when the quarterback goes back to through a pass, can’t find a receiver, and throws the ball into the ground. A well grounded person is someone who has a firm foundation. A pilot who has poor vision can be grounded, meaning they cannot fly anymore.
Believe it our not, grounding means to be humble. From Humility comes the Latin word humas, meaning “close to the earth.”
For example, the tax collector in the gospel lived close to the earth. As a result, he was open to conversion and being lifted up by God. The Pharisee was far from the ground. He was so far from the earth that he was closed of from conversion. He had an attitude sickness from taking the high moral ground.
Most of us find ourselves somewhere between the grounded tax collector and the highflying Pharisee. Being humble is the best way to be. Here is what being humble means:
A humble person does not think he or she is better than someone else. A humble person does not try to look better than someone by putting others down. A humble person honors others by sharing their gifts. This enables others people to benefit from the goodness of God.
The best way to ensure that we remain humble is to be grounded in reality like the tax collector. Here is how to do that.
Be open to people in your life who make demands on you. They might be economically disadvantaged, disabled, elderly, or sick. It is not necessarily easy to be with them, but that is the point.
Our response to these friends makes us grounded, draws out gifts we sometimes did not even know we had. At the very least, our response to these friends reminds us how grateful we should be for the gifts we have received. Others can tell a lot about us by the company we keep, and the people we shun.
I went to fill up our Cherokee Warrior II with 100LL at ACS in Dillingham this week. I started to fill the tank and stopped. I forgot to ground the plane first.
Don’t forget to ground yourselves before every week. The Body and Blood of Christ does just that. As you come forward for communion today think of how the Eucharist will help humble us so we can use our gifts and talents to help others.
By remaining humble, we can expect to be filled with life and life abundantly. So, here is a direct order…you are all grounded for life (577 Words).
Sirach 35:12-14, 16-18;
For he is a God of justice, who knows no favorites. Though not unduly partial toward the weak, yet he hears the cry of the oppressed. He is not deaf to the wail of the orphan, nor to the widow when she pours out her complaint; He who serves God willingly is heard; his petition reaches the heavens. The prayer of the lowly pierces the clouds; it does not rest till it reaches its goal, Nor will it withdraw till the Most High responds, judges justly and affirms the right.
2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18;
For I am already being poured out like a libation, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me, which the Lord, the just judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but to all who have longed for his appearance. At my first defense no one appeared on my behalf, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them! But the Lord stood by me and gave me strength, so that through me the proclamation might be completed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was rescued from the lion's mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil threat and will bring me safe to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory forever and ever. Amen.
He then addressed this parable to those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else. "Two people went up to the temple area to pray; one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector. The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, 'O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity--greedy, dishonest, adulterous--or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.' But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, 'O God, be merciful to me a sinner.' I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted."