It seems I just keeping giving and giving and giving away: A homily for the 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time (Year C)

Tod0e973783_child-prayingay we celebrate two things.  We celebrate intention weekend for the United Catholic Appeal.  We do celebrate that. We celebrate that we have been given a chance to be a part of the mission of Jesus and his body the Church here in our archdiocese. You saw the video just now of just how much our diocese is doing. We get to be a part of it. We are a part of it.  That should make us excited.

I will say it does seem like we OLGers have a lot of opportunities to open up our wallets. My goodness. It seems like every weekend there is another pitch of some nature, and there are bake sales and wreath sales and candy sales after most of our Masses.  We even want your blood–blood drive after Mass.  It is good.  Somebody said, “We just had this campaign with a video last year and we get picked all the time!”  Good, I’m glad we’re having it again, glad there are so many chances to give. Not having such occasions would indicate our church has stopped its mission. And that cannot be.

We also celebrate Vocations Sunday today.  Lots of vocations news. My brother and sister in law just had their fourth, born at 8:50am on Wednesday while I was celebrating Mass here. Rachel Rose. God already knows Rachel Rose’s vocation, where her life will take her, and that is happy and beautiful thought.  We start our race for vocations sign ups today.  We have also been talking about vocations all week at the school.  I asked one second grade class how we can know our vocations, and one student said, “Well, it’s kind of like God sets it up for us.” Right on man, right on.  I celebrated an anniversary Mass for a couple at Greenwood Village on Wednesday. They’ve been married 70 years and held hands the whole Mass through. They met by accident. Yesterday evening I prayed over Jamison Henry, a member of our parish who just became Catholic last Easter. Now he is leaving to become a Franciscan.  He became Catholic when he was sick at St Francis Hospital and he called up a random church in the phone book. It was us.  Now he is to become a Friar.  Last night I spent some good times with Fr. Luke Waugh, OSB, a monk from Meinrad and a dear friend. He became a monk rather by accident. He jokes that after he became a monk, they fired the psychologist and the vocation director.  Most of those of you married got married because you met someone at just the right time, rather by chance.

But there is no “just by chance” with God.

Our vocations–like capital campaigns–demand a lot from us. I don’t seem to make it too many nights without a hospital call. I’ve had two hard ones this week.  And after Spanish Mass, I had to laugh because I had so many things to do, meetings, lunch plans, youth group, etc. But someone wanted confession, so I agreed but said we’d have to be fast. Finished with that person and there was a line a mile long out of the confessional!  Parents know this feeling too.  I know parents who haven’t had a good night’s sleep in 10 years.  There is always a dipper to change, a fight to break up, a mess to clean up, a sickness to ease, a meal to make, a heart to console. God asks a lot of us in our vocations.

But in both our vocations and giving opportunities, I’ve been thinking of this ditty. It comes from Fr. Larry Richards’ grandmother:

“What, giving again?” I said in dismay.
It seems I just keep giving and giving and giving away.
“O no,” said the angel, piercing me through,
“Just give until God stops giving to you.”

Amen.