Ordinary Time: Lord, Teach Us
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Stewardship

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What is Stewardship?


A steward is someone who takes care of what belongs to someone else, like an administrator or trustee not an owner.  Christian stewards recognize that everything really belongs to God - everything we are and everything we have - and that God will hold us accountable for how we use the many gifts he has entrusted to our care.

If we truly believe this and experience a conversion of heart, we can't hel but respond with profound gratitude.  This gratitdude is expressed inour celebration of the Eucharist (the very word means thanks) and in the way we live our everyday lives.

The life of a Christian steward models the life of Jesus.  When we accept our lives as sheer gifts, the Spirit can use us as apt instruments for spreading the Gospel.  Wherever the Spirit works, there is joy.  Good stewards are always the joyful bearers of the Good News of Salvation.

THE NEED TO GIVE VS. GIVING TO THE NEED

What Is a Stewardship Parish?

When we think of the word stewardship, we often think of giving our time, talent, and treasure back to God for all that He does for us.

As a stewardship parish our focus is on upholding the four pillars of stewardship: 

· Hospitality (Christian kindness)

· Prayer (heart to heart with God)

· Formation (discover and share Christ)

· Serve (love in action)

Characteristics of an everyday steward include being mindful, grateful, accountable, gracious, prayerful, and giving.

A New Year, New Beginnings for the Christian Steward

Turning the page to a new calendar year gives us the feeling of a fresh start, a new beginning, and new opportunities. It is a time when people feel that they can begin anew with their lives. Although there is nothing in the Bible or notable in Christian tradition about New Year’s resolutions, many good stewards take advantage of this time of year to become closer to the Lord. They may recommit to prayer, Bible reading, or attending Mass. Now one month into the new year, do you need to reinvigorate your spiritual resolutions? Here are a few ideas:

Practice gratitude – Cultivating a grateful heart is the hallmark of a Christian steward. Every day, express thankfulness to the Lord and to others.

Encounter the Lord each day – Find time to be with the Lord each day, whether it be for an hour or ten minutes. Have a conversation with the Lord. Give your joys and worries to Him as well. Allow God’s love to transform them. Our encounters will keep our eyes and ears open to the presence of Christ in our midst.

Resist overwork – There is a pressure to produce, meet goals, be successful. But activities that lead us to overwork, constant fatigue and worry do not give glory to God. What God calls us to do we can do well. Be mindful that life requires balance, down time and letting go of unrealistic goals.

Nurture friendships – Our friends are those we choose to be with, those with whom we spend our evenings, with whom we vacation, to whom we go to for advice. Friends are gifts from God who give us a greater appreciation of God’s love for us. Friends need our time and love.

Give more – Good stewards realize that everything they have is entrusted to them as gift to be shared. There is no better place to begin than sharing with the community that gathers around the Lord’s table at Mass. Consider what you are giving to your parish and local diocese and commit to an even greater contribution as circumstances allow.

Make a difference in your parish community – Believe it or not, your parish community can use your talents. Offering your talents to your faith community is one of the most effective ways to feel useful and connected to others, and it is a potentially life-changing New Year’s resolution.   — by International Catholic Stewardship Council, catholicstewardship.com

 

 

Lenten Prayer
 

from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (usccb.org)

In the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Keep your family, O Lord,
schooled always in good works,
and so comfort them with your protection here
as to lead them graciously to gifts in high.

Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity
of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Amen.

Stewardship Meditation:
“Bear your share of the hardship for the Gospel,”
St. Paul tells Timothy in today’s second reading. What sacrifice is asked of me for the sake of the Gospel? How willing am I to bear my share?

 

Stewardship is not a program.
It is a way of life

Stewardship is not an activity.
It is an attitude

Stewardship is not the latest fad.
It is biblically based

Stewardship is not a way to raise money.
It is a way to attain holiness

Stewardship is not just a decision of the head.
It requires a conversion of the heart

Stewardship is not a topic to learn.
It is a process of becoming

Stewardship is not an option.
It is integral to our Catholic faith

Stewardship is not another thing to do.
It is why and how we do what we do

Stewardship is not about our generosity.
It is about our response to God's generosity

Stewardship is what you do after you say,
"I Believe."

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