SCHOOL YEAR BEGINNINGS AND HARVEST SEASON
Matthew 19:21 and Luke 12:21
Brothers and Sisters,
Every season is one that I enjoy. There is not a time of year that I do not like. Sure, there’s a down-side to each of the seasons: Spring is muddy, Summer is muggy, Autumn is both hot and cold, Winter makes planning travel impossible – but I love them all.
Since Autumn is just around the corner, I want to be sure that we all remember how crazy busy all of us will be as we move into September and beyond. School, sports, harvest, family, world series, football, and maybe even an out-of-town trip. I am sure that there are things on your list that I didn’t include on this list; it is all-the-more clear, then: there is hardly a moment to spare until after Christmas.
The thing that scares me every year at this point is the health of the Holy Faith as we start Autumn. I hope that this writing is yet received as an old, tired message. It is my experience that the Holy Faith always seems to take a back seat to all of these other priorities. Please hear me accurately: I do not want to sound like I am whining in bringing up this topic. I understand that we are busy, I understand that we are going to be tired, I understand that we are going to need a break from the hustled life.
HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS: you already have the full schedule for the Church. Not only do you know when Mass will be at the parish, but the schedule for Holy Days and other special events are already available to you. The Saint Olaf website has the full calendar for the coming academic year. All Saint Day, Christmas, Lent, and more are already available on the Saint Olaf website. Please do check out the EVENTS section to see the full calendar of events. No matter how busy we are, we need to be at Mass every weekend and Holy Day.
All of that, of course, is only part of the story. Prayer and good works are also part of the Christian life that very-much seem to disappear in the busy Autumn days. Getting up for another day of school or work often means that there isn’t prayer to start the day; a long, tough, and exhausting day often means that we just crash into bed at the end of the day – no prayer, no act of thanksgiving, no examination of conscious.
Being Christian is a habit. Christianity is not a label that we just declare ourselves to be; it is not a simple statement that one believes in Jesus, even. The Holy Faith is a habit that is done, re-done, and done again every single day. Without the daily practice of prayer, Mass at least weekly, and good works constantly we cannot be called Christians. Plan now, focus in the Fall and be sure that you are at Mass and prayer.
God be near,