devotional

Yes, You Can Serve

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One of the more interesting biblical quotes from Jesus Christ is found in the Acts of the Apostles, not in one of the four Gospels. In chapter 20, St. Paul is himself quoted, addressing church elders from Ephesus and sharing the following: “I have never wanted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You know well that these very hands have served my needs and my companions. In every way I have shown you that by hard work of that sort we must help the weak and keep in mind the words of the Lord Jesus.” The Apostle seems to advocate self-reliance, yet clearly preaches a concern for those who are less fortunate and unable to provide for themselves.

The focus is on work and service. But, then St. Paul quotes the Lord. “ ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” When we quote those words, we invariably speak of financial charity, not of work and service. Perhaps we might rethink the emphasis. Each of us is granted some measure of financial blessing, able to share at least a modest amount with the poor and needy. We have also been given tools, skills of great benefit within each parish and in our surrounding communities. We can all give. We can also serve, ministering purposefully as God wills.

 

THE STEWARD'S BOOKSHELF

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FROM THE ARCHIVES

Growth at Rest

From the Stewardship Today Archives:
May 2006
     

Following the conversion of Saul of Tarsus, for a season, the New Testament church enjoyed a time of both peace and prosperity. In the ninth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, Luke writes the following: “The church throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria was at peace. It was being built up and walked in the fear of the Lord, and with the consolation of the Holy Spirit it grew in numbers.” Very shortly, the Church would once again know great persecution....read more

LOCAL DIOCESAN NEWS

Catholic High School Graduations

Catholic high school graduations are scheduled throughout the month of May. Please consider our high school graduates at this special time, as well as the administration and staff at each of our regional Catholic high schools through your prayerful support. Visit www.csobr.org to access the May calendar.

Diocesan News Page

STEWARDSHIP: THE LOCAL PARISH

 

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The Catholic Church has enjoyed a significant presence in the Prairieville area since before the Civil War era. Organized mission efforts continued into the century just past, and St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church was established as an independent parish through the Archdiocese of New Orleans in 1919. Eleven dozen individual parishioners formed the initial charter. God’s blessing to succeeding generations has been strong, as more than 3,000 registered families now call St. John the Evangelist their home church, serving them, their neighbors, and their growing Ascension Parish community.

A busy Welcoming Committee, Volunteer Babysitting teams, large and healthy Knights of Columbus and Ladies Altar Society groups are but a few of those that serve members, guests and the greater Prairieville area. Parishioners visit the Louisiana Correctional Institute and Hunt Correctional Prison, the parish sends dozens to minister in Honduras, and a variety of caregivers regularly serve the hospitalized and homebound.

For general information or to discover how you and your family might join your fellow Catholics in service and worship at St. John the Evangelist in Prairieville, please visit their engaging and informative website: www.stjohnchurch.org

 

STEWARDSHIP IN SCRIPTURE

The evening Jesus was betrayed, he provided the apostles a new command, one we follow as faithful Catholics today. It is a picture of devotion, to God and to each other:

“Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him at once. My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, ‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you.”

“I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

(St. John 13:31-35; New American Bible, Revised Edition)

CATHOLIC SAINTS ON STEWARDSHIP

Familiar words from Doctor of the Church St. Therese of Lisieux direct us to express our love for others, every day and in every way possible:

“Even a little child can scatter flowers, to scent the throne room with their fragrance; even a little child can sing, in its shrill treble, the great canticle of Love. That shall be my life: to scatter flowers—to miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word, always doing the tiniest things right, and doing it for love.”

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LINKS WE RECOMMEND

Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge
http://www.diobr.org

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops
http://usccb.org

The Vatican Website
http://www.vatican.va

Diocese of Baton Rouge Office of Stewardship
http://www.officeofstewardship.com

More Local, Regional and National Links...

APRIL 2015

The Sunday Mass on CatholicLife TV

St. Joseph Cathedral, Baton Rouge

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CatholicLife Television: www.catholiclifetv.org

Stewardship: A Louisiana Legacy


stewardship may2015The Benefits of Catholic Education

For the better part of two centuries, young people in the capital area have known the benefits of a quality Catholic education, first in outlying civil parishes, and then in antebellum Baton Rouge, from the Academy of Sacred Heart in Convent to the thirty-plus campuses serving thousands of children through the Diocese of Baton Rouge today. The Catholic Schools of Baton Rouge mission statement captures an established tradition of commitment and excellence in education....read more

The Stewardship of Prayer


prayer may2015Live for the Lord


“There are no atheists in foxholes.” One writer has stretched that familiar phrase to read “there are no atheists in probate.” In general, the aphorism suggests that anyone—spiritually sensitive or not—seeks resolute consolation from a higher power in times of stress and hardship. There are many applications, especially at test time, the close of the second semester of classes. When troubled, we pray....read more

 

A Willing Heart ... read more

The Stewardship of Ministry


ministry may2015From Fear to Faithful Support


“If possible, on your part, live at peace with all.” His words to the Christians in Rome not withstanding, St. Paul did not get along with everyone. There is little wonder. Before his dramatic conversion, his calling alarmed most people. He was known as Saul, a man who despised and persecuted Christians. Because he was ruthless, he established a reputation throughout the region and was feared by all. Following his conversion, Paul went into exile, received instruction, spent time with key church leaders, and then entered the fold as an evangelist and missionary. More than a few people did not believe the change possible. They still feared him. That’s no wonder either. . . .read more

 

Believe It In, and Live It Out ... read more

The Stewardship of Finance


finance may2015Brothers and Sisters, We Are the Cords

 

Nearly half of all smartphone users in America own an iPhone. And according to one study, that preference represents more than 1 in 4 adults. If you own an iPhone, you also own a cell phone charger. Or two. Or three. The same may be true if you use an iPad or other similar device. The typical cord is about three-and-a-half feet long, connecting to your phone at one end, and to an electrical outlet or power strip at the other. Folks complain about the cord length, but longer replacements are available. One innovative, contemporary pastor likens our role in spiritual circuitry to an iPhone and its charger. And so you ask, “Am I the phone?” Not hardly. “Am I the power source?” You’re kidding, right. No, my friends, we are merely the cords. To illustrate the notion biblically, consider the words of Jesus, found in St. John’s Gospel, chapter 15.. . .read more

 

The Gift of Intangible Blessings ... read more

 


 
“Whatever our bodies may be doing, we should at the same time continually lift up our minds to God, which is the most acceptable form of prayer. For no matter which way we turn our steps, as long as our minds are turned to God, we clearly are not turned away from Him who is present everywhere.”                         

(St. Thomas More, 1478-1535, English Statesman and Catholic Martyr)

Stewardship Today is a monthly devotional newsletter designed to assist Catholics everywhere in developing a greater understanding of the role of stewardship in everyday life.
All we are, and all we possess, are gifts from God for our use and for the blessing of others. Through wise stewardship, we invest our time, our talents and our treasures to the glory of God.

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