Together in Spirit

August 2023 archive of From the Desk of Fr. Mike

August 2023 archive of From the Desk of Fr. Mike

The Practice of Restorative Justice

Posted by Anne Serwe on 8/29/23

The American justice system is based on retributive justice which has punishment as its primary aim. The punishment given for the offense is seen as sufficient compensation to the victim and to society. This type of justice system has always had its limits. The victims who suffer loss often ... Read More »

Unity in Christ

Posted by Anne Serwe on 8/20/23

Now in regard to meat sacrificed to idols:* we realize that “all of us have knowledge”; knowledge inflates with pride, but love builds up. If anyone supposes he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if one loves God, one is known by him. (1Cor*:1-3)

We had a beautiful festival last Sunday with great food, entertainment, and activities.  I appreciate the many members of our family who stepped up to make the festival a reality, which shows the best of our parish family to those who come to visit us on those days.  (Note: I do not use the word “volunteers” since that would indicate an “over and above” sort of contribution).  Yes, we as a family of faith gathered and expressed the best part of ourselves to the rest of the local community.  Throughout those two days I was both very proud and at the same time saddened as I watched a new tension ripple through this very hospitable community. We have a new Respect Life committee that was formed over the summertime. I was grateful that there were members of the family who stepped up to create a much-needed group that can help us monitor the political winds and direct our energies in such a way that we might be an effective voice of the Gospel of Life. At the same time, I encountered grumbling from members of that same group wondering if we were truly a “Catholic” community because some posters that they had put up were found offensive to others in our family. For some it seemed a simple answer: “We are Catholic-We should be pro-life” and anyone who might have a different expression of pro-life sensitivities is considered not-catholic. It seemed almost as easy (and difficult) to say: because I do not agree with him, he is not my ... Read More »

Celebrating as Community

Posted by Anne Serwe on 8/17/23

This weekend is one of my favorite annual moments at Saint Joe’s. Easter and Christmas Masses are our biggest gatherings of the community, however their great shortfall is that we too quickly move from the large communal gathering that lasts about an hour to much smaller family gatherings that ... Read More »

Transfiguration - Experiencing Jesus through the Senses

Posted by Anne Serwe on 8/07/23

Solomon becomes a follower of Astarte (god of the Canaanites and Phoenicians). He moves from the glory of his youthful wisdom to the overindulgence of his passions.

In case you were wondering about how my article ended last week; above my column heading is the last (half omitted) sentence.

... Read More »


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