Dear St. Martin’s Parishioners,
“Woe to the complacent in Zion,” the prophet Amos cries out in this Sunday’s first reading. One of the effects of complacency is that it makes us self-centered. We tend to turn away from people and activities that challenge us, or which call from us a deep response. Complacency is associated with comfort, and comfort is not always a bad thing. But complacency engenders a superficial comfort rather than a deep and stable peace. The complacent take comfort in luxury, possessions and bodily pleasures. It is no wonder that a complacent and comfortable people becomes a godless people. To allow God into our lives threatens a life of superficial comfort.
Rather than complacent, we are called to become resilient. Theodore Roosevelt summed up resiliency in a famous speech given in 1910, “The Man in the Arena.”
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who pointed out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; and knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place should never be with those cold and timid souls who neither no victory nor defeat.”
In October I will call upon all of our parishioners to take a step in active engagement in parish life. Next weekend, October 1-2, I humbly ask you to Take the Next Step in parish offertory support. It is not a stretch to say that our parish depends almost exclusively on the contributions that our parishioners make on a weekly basis. On Sunday October 23, I ask our parishioners to consider involving themselves in one of St. Martin’s many liturgical, spiritual, charitable and catechetical ministries. Sunday Mass is the beginning and culmination of our spiritual lives, but there is so much more needed to make this community run well. Your “yes” to our parish’s mission is a great example of resiliency in action.
Yours in Christ,