Sunday, June 24, 2018

What's in a Name

One day I asked my mother where my name came from and her response surprised me.  She told me that she wanted to name me after her best friend whose name was Patsy but my father would have nothing to do with that so I was called Patricia.  I am forever grateful to my father for sparing me from that fate. 

In today’s Gospel we have a scene where Zechariah and Elizabeth give birth to a son whom they named John.  Elizabeth broke with tradition by announcing her son’s name and Zechariah affirmed this to be true.  We have an awesome God.  A God who is full of surprises and love.  Our God gives us so many blessings for which we should be grateful.  Zechariah and Elizabeth were servants in the temple and God heard their prayers and granted them a son.  This child would grow up and take his place in salvation history.  God heard and answered their prayers.  God always gives us more than we ask for or imagine.  Like Zechariah and Elizabeth we too are called to believe, trust and hope that all shall be well.

Pat Schifini, OSU

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

World Day of Prayer for Migrants

Call to Prayer and Reconciliation:

Today we join our hearts and minds in solidarity with our sisters and brothers who, at this very moment, are refugees, families and individuals who are migrating all over the world.  Jesus, when you multiplied the loaves and fishes, you provided more than food for the body, you offered us the gift of yourself, the gift which satisfies every hunger and quenches every thirst! Your disciples were filled with fear and doubt, but you poured out your love and compassion on the migrant crowd, welcoming them as brothers and sisters.  Jesus, today you call us to welcome the members of God's family who come to our land to escape oppression, poverty, persecution, violence, and war. Like your disciples, we too are filled with fear and doubt and even suspicion. We build barriers in our hearts and in our minds.

Jesus, help us by your grace,
 To banish fear from our hearts, that we may embrace each of your children as our own brother and sister;
 To welcome migrants and refugees with joy and generosity, while responding to their many needs;
 To realize that you call all people to your holy mountain to learn the ways of peace and justice;
 To share of our abundance as you spread a banquet before us;
 To give witness to your love for all people, as we celebrate the many gifts they bring.

We praise you and give you thanks for the family you have called together from so many people. We see in this human family a reflection of the divine unity of the one Most Holy Trinity in whom we make our prayer: Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier. Amen. - Prayer from USCCB

Pat Schifini, OSU

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Feast of Corpus Christi

Today we celebrate the feast of Corpus Christi.  This day we are reminded that Jesus is our Bread of Life.  As we celebrate the great feast of thanksgiving let us recall Jesus’ invitation to come and see.  Jesus personifies hospitality in everything he did.  His tender compassion, his welcome of all people, his miracles and parables are all invitations to enter into a deeper relationship with Jesus.  Jesus had a magnetic personality and people were drawn to him.   He attracted people from all walks of life and never judged them.   Jesus desired to share his message with all who would hear it.  People in Jesus’ time were hungering for direction in life – much like our current reality.

Jesus’ hospitality reached far and wide.  He wanted/wants people to be whole both physically and spiritually.  The nourishment of the Eucharist is more than spiritual.  Jesus desires all people to be satisfied both physically and spiritually.  As we partake in the great act of thanksgiving – the Eucharist let us always remember that Jesus is indeed our bread of life.  The song Pan de Vida summarizes beautifully this feast for me.

Pan de Vida by Bob Hurd and Pia Moriarty

Pan de Vida, cuerpo del SeƱor, Cup of blessing, blood of Christ the Lord. At this table the last shall be first.  Porder es server, porque Dios es amor.

1. We are the dwelling of God, fragile and wounded and weak.  We are the body of Christ, called to be the compassion of God

2. You call me Teacher and Lord; I, who have washed your feet.  So you must do as I do, so the greatest must become the least.

3. There is no Jew or Greek; There is no slave or free; There is no woman or man; Only heirs to the promise of God.

Pat Schifini, OSU