Say the Word and My Soul Shall Be Healed

The third Sunday of September is Catechetical Sunday, a time to commission our catechists to be sent with the Holy Spirit to serve our children and youth in our community. At our baptism we are all called to serve others. Being a catechist is a rewarding way to bring Christ to others for we all know it takes a village to help lead a child to Christ. It takes loving parents, Godparents, extended family members and a faith‐filled community.

Christ said, “You did not choose me. Rather, I chose you. And I appointed you to go out and bear fruit, fruit that will remain, so that the Father may give you whatever you ask him in my name.” (John 15:16) We are appointed and called.

Today we thank those who heard the call to serve our children and youth: Colleen O’Kane, Arlene Gonsalves, Carin Powers, Kate White, Carolyn Schmitizeh, Kelley O’Keefe, Julie Gunter, Teresa Davancaze, Steve Terlizzi, Moira Delumpa, Meg Venables Lin, Carmen Vigor, and Ignatius Bezzam. Their dedication is the wrap‐around‐love from the community to guide our future, our children and youth, to the love Christ has for each and every one of us.

Today we all know the importance of giving our children and youth the foundation of a loving Christ as their center. We live in a broken world and we will need guidance our entire lives, and His grace to heal and grow. Before the pandemic started, our Church saw a decrease in children remaining in their faith, most making the decision to leave the Church by 13. Where does that leave them when they are faced with life’s challenges, when they try to fill a hole that can only be filled by the love of God and how to heal through our brokenness? Now through a pandemic, we have seen how Christ‐filled lives are shaping the recovery and sustaining us through COVID‐19 as we focus on what is most important, spend more time with family members, serve others to ensure everyone has enough and pray.

About five years ago I was invited to a fundraising event to help fund a new museum in Washington, D.C., The Bible Museum. One of the speaker’s words resonated with me that day. She spoke about her faith being the most important part of her life: it gave her hope to live not knowing what the future had in store for her during her life, the love to sustain her and feel the joy of this life, and the knowledge to know we have a salvation story with Christ. She thought once she died, she did not want this knowledge of the gifts of Christ to end. What better way to give than to ensure people know Christ so they can love him too and walk with him!

That is what our catechists do. They help bring the Word of God and his teachings alive to our children and youth. They inform your children to help build their formation so they can be transformed by Christ! While we have limited classes for Faith Formation and sessions for EDGE and theIntersection through the year, we believe the love, understanding and formation they receive will stay with them when this love continues to wrap around them at home and is seen as an example in our world. We thank all for being a living example of Christ, parents entrusting your children with us for their formation to know and walk with Christ and thank all the parents for being their first catechists! May we all continue to grow in his love and be healed through Christ!

Reflection by Catherine Campbell