"For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me."
— Matthew 25:35-36
2019 Stewardship Witness Speakers
Called to Serve
“As I have done, so you must also do.” These were Christ’s words after He washed His apostle’s feet at the last supper. In this dramatic moment, Jesus called His followers to a life of humility and service. Helping others, especially the poor, is how we follow Christ’s command “to love your neighbor as yourself.”
During our Stewardship Renewal, we are focusing on the importance of service and having the heart of a servant. A servant goes where his master leads and responds without hesitation, ready and willing to do the will of the Master. With the right disposition, we can be ready for action when opportunity arises.
As many of us have discovered, service to others leads to peace and joy; we find that we are truly blessed when we give of ourselves. During this year’s Stewardship Renewal, let us turn to Christ for the grace to serve as He served and to love as He loved.
The Language of a Servant
Prayer is the lifeblood of a true disciple of Christ. Without a healthy relationship with our Savior, we can’t hope to know His perfect will or the depths of His love. Take time in daily prayer with God, asking Him how you can best serve others. As you discern how God is calling you to give of your time this year, ask Him to transform your heart into that of a servant.
- Pope Francis encourages us to read the daily readings of the Catholic Church found at http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings, asking God how He would have you apply them to your life.
- Spend five minutes each morning, thanking Him for the ways He has graciously blessed you and then asking Him for help with your struggles.
- Pray with your children each night before bed, giving each family member an opportunity to pray for something and concluding with an Our Father, Hail Mary and the Glory Be.
- Download and utilize Catholic phone and tablet apps, such as iBreviary, Magnificat, The Pope App or Divine Office.
"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light for my path."
- Psalm 119:105
The Actions of a Servant
Talents are the gifts God has given us that enable us to serve Him. All talents or skills that we have can be used to give God glory and are equally important in His eyes. During this year’s Stewardship Renewal, consider your own talents and ask God how you can best use them to serve Him through His people.
Action Steps to Become More Active in Service
- Pray about how the gifts God has given you can best be used to serve others.
- Use your Commitment Card to find a ministry that will help you grow personally in understanding the faith as well as serving others.
- Commit to being faithful to God through those you serve in word and deed.
"Incline my heart according to your will, Oh God."
- The Divine Office
The Servant's Gift
In just the same way that we have received the gifts of time and talent from God, so have we received our treasure. While many of us have worked hard to earn the money in our pockets, His gifts to us are what have enabled us to do so. In grateful appreciation for His gifts to us, we are called to give our best, our “first fruits”, back to Him.
At our parish, we give to God in accordance with the scriptural tithe, and ask parishioners to give 5 percent of their income to God through the offertory, 4 percent to other charities, and 1 percent to the diocese. In this way, we entrust our plans and ourselves in a unique way to God and His providence in our lives. By placing Him first in our finances, we show Him that He is more important than any of the material goods we have in this world, and give Him power over all in our lives.
Ways to Give Generously to God
- Take a look at your current budget and spending habits and assess what expenses are preventing you from giving more selflessly.
- Commit to giving a percentage of your income to God through the parish offertory and be faithful to your tithing commitment, even when you attend Mass elsewhere.