This year has been the most challenging in many years. We can only hope it gets better. From early on, COVID 19 has devastated the world not just in deaths, but it outright controls our jobs, money, shopping, socializing, schools and government. Family members are afraid to visit each other. Church was closed and over six months later, still is not fully open. That alone has been quite something to deal with. Then we have witnessed much violence in many of our major cities. Looting, burning down buildings and murder have become the new norm in those places. The evil of socialism has come to the forefront with the harboring of resentment and propagations of lies to incite violence that has destroyed so many lives they pretend to protect. We pray our country can be healed of its division and hatred. It is a hatred and division that we have never seen before.
We need God all the more today. So many think humanity will do this or that to save itself. More and more people are relying on the politics or human ingenuity to save them. They will listen more to the media or politicians than to their faith. As one joke goes, how do you know when a politician is lying? When their lips are moving. How far humanity has fallen from God’s ways and the ability to recognize where God is doing His works.
The reason why we are suffering so much is because for so long we have abandoned His ways and preferred to rely on ourselves. Our society is destroying itself with its sins. It is so important that we go back to our faith now. We need to remind ourselves of what we were taught in the Catholic Church and teach these realities to our children and grandchildren. Without these basics in faith, we cannot have peace, justice or joy. We need to embrace these teachings and help the young ones today understand the wisdom it imparts. These teachings are practical and convey the truth only found in our faith.
I thank God we have the Religious Education (RE) program we have today. The RE program is here to help our children learn the truth in Jesus and apply these realities in their lives. Truth is freeing. It gives clarity to the mind and heart. It gives peace to the soul. It leads a person to goodness, to serving and loving others. It makes a society more secure and safe. For those who fall into sin, it brings them hope that they have an advocate in Jesus at their side. It leads us to trust in the goodness of God himself.
Learning about Jesus gives us faith in the goodness of God and how we are to act. Not out of rules or regulations, but because it allows us to have a deeper relationship with God. We start to discover His real personality. How Jesus, God, came as a little child. God came in such a humble way so that we would not run in fear, but marvel at the gentleness of the all-powerful God. What an opportunity for our children to have hope and peace. We do not have to fall into despair or the anger that the world holds. We can be free of these anxieties because of our faith. As I am always fond of saying, math teaches us how to balance a budget, English helps us communicate and hopefully get a job, but our faith gets us through life and hopefully leads us to eternal life.
I thank God Jesus came to live with us. He chose to walk with humanity and suffer everything we suffer. He did this so that He could be our companion each and every step of the way on this pilgrimage of life. He wants to do this for our children.
This year, the RE program has changed up the curriculum to help the parents understand and convey this gracious faith to their children. Because of the COVID situation, parents can teach online from their home, and/or bring them to classes. We now have access to online technology to make this fun for the children. It teaches the children how to pray and reflect on the Bible.
I am also thankful for all the volunteers we have helping us teach the children about the faith. Many new people have stepped up to help ensure that the faith is passed on to our young. Please pray for them and the fruitfulness of the RE program this year.
God has been so good to us. He is so merciful and desires us as a society to come back to him and remain with Him. He desires us to be in His peace and Joy. Thank God He showed us His ways. Thank God He died on the cross for us. Thank heaven that we could get to really know Him.