Holy Family

Holy Family

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Feast of the Archangels

Good morning. What tells us to believe? In today’s Gospel Nathaniel is moved by Jesus’ telling him that He had seen him under the fig tree before Philip called to him. To a great extent I believe because I was raised in a home where my faith was every bit routine as brushing one’s hair. Yet, at some point, much like the fork in the road in the poem by Robert Frost, I made a choice, and it was my childhood experiences that helped in choosing the right path. The choice I made has made all the difference. As a result my life experiences have taken me much further and God has spoken to me in so many ways that my faith has grown well beyond my primary childhood experiences. I find myself being grateful this morning for the direction given me by my family in choosing the right path. In thinking about this it occurred to me how so very different it is for children today, where the faith experience is often very shallow and at times nonexistent. Often today parents approach the question of faith from the stance of being a commodity, like choosing vegetables at the grocers. “Should we raise our kids with or without religion?” “Should we let them choose?” Much like choosing melons, many parents today sniff and poke about toward coming up with just the right religion that is suitably comfortable, and suitably convenient, and suitably shaped to their particular philosophical take on the world. And too, like your friendly neighborhood grocer, the church has responded to the consumer demands for a variety of church that makes us feel good versus being spiritually challenged. This grocery store approach to religion seems to obscure one very basic understanding of our faith, which is that the church does not exist for the purpose of making us feel spiritually comfortable but to challenge us spiritually. Jesus makes it very clear to us that there is no easy path, but that if we take the right path we will come to see greater things than this world has to offer. What will we as parents do today toward assuring that our children are on that right path? Make a great day!

Today the church celebrates the Feast of the Archangels. In scripture we read of three of these angels, Gabriel who announces to Mary that she is to be the mother of God, Michael who conquers Satan and all his evil angels, and Raphael who accompanies Tobias on his journey.


St. Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the Devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
and do thou,
O Prince of the heavenly hosts,
by the power of God,
thrust into hell Satan,
and all the evil spirits,
who prowl about the world
seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

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