Living as Missionary Disciples Newsletter
A practical newsletter with ideas, resources, special announcements, articles and more to help good parishes become a vibrant family of parishes.
November 15, 2022
Feast of Saint Albert the Great
Why become Catholic?
John Michael Talbot – recording artist and founder of the Franciscan Lay Community, Brothers and Sisters of Charity. A significant part of his conversion were the books given to him by those he respected: the Bible from his grandmother; the life of Francis of Assisi from a close friend; the writings of the early Church by a Franciscan mentor. He became Catholic is 1978. Share your spiritual books with others. (Taken from A Century of Catholic Converts, Lorene Hanley Duquin)
Missionary discipleship takes place within the context of evangelization and begins with an encounter with Christ.”Living as Missionary Disciples (pg. 9)
Parish Idea: Tending the Seeds on the Road to Renewal (Practical Suggestions)
Promote the Bible.
- Establish Dec. 4 as Bible Sunday. Use this Sunday (or another Sunday) to encourage people to consider giving Bibles or Bible books as Christmas gifts. Display bibles and books that appeal to all ages. Have a typed sheet of stores, gift shops and websites where these products can be purchased. Don’t forget the American Bible Society and USCCB. Good translations are: New American Bible, New International Version, Good New.
- Starting now, challenge parishioners to read the bible The Bible in a Year.
- Begin to plan on offering Bible study or small groups based on scripture after the first of the year.
- Test your knowledge of the Infancy Narratives based on the Gospels of Luke and Matthew. One side of this sheet is taken from Luke’s Infancy Narratives (1-2:39). The other side is from Matthew’s Infancy Narratives (Chapter 1-2) Find ways to share this quiz with different groups. Refer to the scriptures to find the answers. (Careful! Some answers are tricky. Read the scriptures well. For example: Where did the 3 kings find Jesus? (Mt. 2:11) Where did Joseph come from? (Mt. 2:24).
Offer hope during the Holidays: Grief wears many faces. We grieve the death of a loved one, a pet, a loss of job, divorce, separation from children or grandchildren, a miscarriage, moving to an unfamiliar area, diminishment of health, and the list goes on. While we may think some losses are less painful than others they are dependent on the person experiencing the grief. As holidays approach emotional pain intensifies. We may wish we could go to sleep on Nov. 1 and wake up on January 1st. These feelings are all normal. Here are some positive things that you can do to prepare ourselves for the holiday. Share the richness of the Family of Parishes (FoP): For each Sunday of Advent ask some parishioners from one of the parishes (or 2 if your family is more than 4 parishes) to reflect on one of the themes of Advent: hope, peace, love and joy. For example – On the first Sunday of Advent, 10 people from parish A will finish this sentence: “A time I experienced hope was . . .” On the second Sunday, 10 people from parish B will finish this sentence: “ A time I experienced peace was . . .” Encourage them to be as personal as possible.
Everyday Evangelizing for Everyday Catholics
Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence. (1 Peter 3:15)
Everyday Evangelizing during the Holiday Season
- Attend Mass on Thanksgiving Day
- Pray with an advent wreath
- Buy a gift for a needy family
- Spend extra time in prayer
- Display a nativity set
- Spend some time serving others as a family (soup kitchen, food give-away, visit Nursing Home)
- Send religious Christmas cards with religious stamps
- Christmas letter – Refrain from writing how good your life has been, rather talk about how good God has been to you.
Do You Hear What I Hear? Program
In October we did a training session for 13 parishes to sponsor this Christmas event in their FoP. The following parishes have scheduled this event. Feel free to attend.
- Family 6: St. George, West Falls. Sun. Dec. 4 at 2:00 pm.
- Family 16: Ss. Peter and Paul, Williamsville. Tues. Nov. 29 at 6:30 pm.
- Family 17: St. Stephen, Grand Island. Sat. Dec. 10 at 7:00 pm.
- Family 31: Blessed Trinity, Buffalo, Sun. Dec. 4 at 2:00 pm.
Closing Thanksgiving Prayer
Lord, we thank you for the goodness of our people and for the spirit of justice that fills this nation. We thank you for the beauty and fullness of the land and the challenge of the cities. We thank you for our work and our rest, for one another, and for our homes. Accept our thanksgiving on this day. We pray and give thanks through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (USCCB)
Closing Thanksgiving Wish
May your stuffing be tasty. May your turkey be plump. May your potatoes and gravy have nary a lump. May your yams be delicious and your pies take the prize, and may your Thanksgiving dinner stay off of your thighs! (author unknown)