Sunday, August 25, 2013

MONDAY MORNING MISSION MEDITATION for the week of August 25, 2013

Catholic Charities. Providing Help. Creating Hope. 

VISION: Believing in the presence of God in our midst, we proclaim the sanctity of human life and the dignity of the person by sharing in the mission of Jesus given to the Church. To this end, Catholic Charities works with individuals, families, and communities to help them meet their needs, address their issues, eliminate oppression, and build a just and compassionate society.

MISSION: Rooted in the Mission of the Diocese of Youngstown "to minister to the people in the six counties of northeastern Ohio . . .(and) to the world community", we are called to provide service to people in need, to advocate for justice in social structures, and to call the entire Church and other people of good will to do the same.

GOALS: Catholic Charities is devoted to helping meet basic human needs, strengthening families, building communities and empowering low-income people. Working to reduce poverty in half by 2020.

KEY VALUE: Hospitality

WHAT WE DO: Organizing Love. "As a community, the Church must practise love. Love thus needs to be organized if it is to be an ordered service to the community" (Deus Caritas Est, par. 20) 

On Sunday, (Twenty First Sunday in Ordinary Time )  we read from the Gospel of Luke about Jesus’ response to a question about who will be saved.  Jesus warns his listeners then, and today, that discipleship has a cost...even a cost to one’s own life.  Jesus provides an image that people will come from all corners of the earth and will be invited to “recline at table in the Kingdom of God.”  We read in the first reading from Isaiah that the LORD calls forth people to come to Jerusalem; the Letter to the Hebrews reminds us that as a loving father would discipline his son, we too are called to be firm and resolute in our faith.  We believe that Jesus’ invitation is open to all.  We are called to respond in kind, and remember that  “some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”  The call to discipleship requires love and self giving, as Jesus Himself modeled.

Catholic Charities  ( continues to serve the least of these to find the support and love witnessed by Jesus Himself, as he invites us “to recline at the table in the Kingdom of God.”  Our sharing of gifts with each other provides a foretaste of that great meal the Jesus models.  “Caritas”  - or love -- as the root of our name of Catholic Charities -- is a way to participate in that sharing that God calls us to do.  By organizing love, donors, volunteers, staff, supporters and clients of Catholic Charities help to set that table always reminding us that the last shall be first.  Your gift to the  Annual Bishop’s Appeal for Catholic Charities and Church ( supports the three fold ministries of the Church: to preach the Good News, to celebrate the sacraments, and to service each other in love.

Reflection from Church Documents and Official Statements

U.S. Bishops Statement on 50th Anniversary of March on Washington:  August 28

Washington, D.C., August 14, 2013 (

Here is the statement released by U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
* * *
As we mark the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom that occurred on August 28, 1963, we call attention to this significant event in the history of the struggle for Civil Rights for African Americans and other minority racial groups in the United States.  Those who participated in the March on Washington came from different races and faith denominations, but were all united for a just cause.  Seeking to touch and to move the heart of America, they came to the nation’s capital and marched to advance the cause for Civil Rights, calling for an end to segregation. They called attention to the economic disparity that existed for African Americans and other minorities in this country. St. Paul in Sacred Scripture declares, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring the good news!” (Romans 10:15), and the participants marched on foot and proclaimed the good news of our God who acts in favor of the marginalized in our country; they called upon the nation to enact legislation that would benefit those suffering and forgotten. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous ‘I Have A Dream’ speech, which redirected the moral compass of the nation toward concern for the cause of justice. Even today his words continue to inspire us. Joining Dr. King at the March on Washington were other religious, civic and community leaders, among them Cardinal Patrick O’Boyle, Archbishop of Washington, who delivered the invocation, and many Roman Catholic priests, religious sisters and brothers and lay faithful.
Fifty years later, we cannot deny the wide spectrum of advancement in many realms of society. We laud the fact that in our country there is more racial and cultural diversity among the leadership in both the public and private sectors. Many more doors of opportunity are open and certain legal remedies are in place. These benefits have allowed members of minority racial groups in our country to advance, and to offer more fully the benefits of their gifts and talents in efforts to work toward the common good for all in our country. The March on Washington and the struggle for Civil Rights have brought about significant accomplishments in the past 50 years.
However, the Dream of Dr. King and all who marched and worked with him has not yet fully become a reality for many in our country. While we cannot deny the change that has taken place, there remains much to be accomplished. The US Catholic Bishops in their 1979 Pastoral Letter on Racism Brothers and Sisters to Us state, “But neither can it be denied that too often what has happened has only been a covering over, not a fundamental change. Today the sense of urgency has yielded to an apparent acceptance of the status quo. The climate of crisis engendered by demonstrations, protests, and confrontation has given way to a mood of indifference, and other issues occupy our attention.” These words continue to ring true at this current point in history. Further, the African American Catholic Bishops reminded us in their 1984 Pastoral Letter on Evangelization What We Have Seen and Heard that “the cause of justice and social concerns are an essential part of evangelization.” We must never allow other issues to eclipse our belief in the fundamental human dignity of each and every person, and our responsibility to build up and to transform society in the manner in which the gospel message of Jesus Christ clearly makes evident to us.
Marking this 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, we join our voices to those who call for and foster continued dialogue and non-violence among people of different races and cultures, and who work tirelessly for the transformative, constructive actions that are always the fruit of such authentic dialogue. We rejoice in the advances that have occurred over the past 50 years, and sadly acknowledge that much today remains to be accomplished. However, we must always view the task that remains from the perspective of the continued call to hope and in the light of faith. Dr. King once stated, “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” Those who participated 50 years ago in the March on Washington rooted themselves in infinite hope. Pope Francis wrote in Lumen Fidei, “Faith teaches us to see that every man and woman represents a blessing for me, that the light of God’s face shines on me through the faces of my brothers and sisters.” We also must join with one another rooted in infinite hope and, in light of what faith teaches, work to advance and fulfill the dream. We join the call for positive action that seeks to end poverty, increase jobs, eliminate racial and class inequality, ensure voting rights, and that provides fair and just opportunities for all.  

In Christ,
Most Reverend Daniel E. Flores
Bishop of Brownsville
Chairman, Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church
Most Reverend Shelton J. Fabre
Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of New Orleans
Chairman, Subcommittee on African American Affairs
Most Reverend Gerald Barnes
Bishop of San Bernardino
Chairman, Subcommittee on Hispanic Affairs
Most Reverend Randolph Calvo
Bishop of Reno
Chairman, Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs
Most Reverend Rutilio Del Riego
Auxiliary Bishop, Diocese of San Bernardino
Chairman, Subcommittee on the Pastoral Care of Migrants, Refugees and Travelers

Some important date(s) this week:

See website for biographies of Saints and Blessed celebrated this week.

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 28.  St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430)

A Christian at 33, a priest at 36, a bishop at 41: Many people are familiar with the biographical sketch of Augustine of Hippo, sinner turned saint. But really to get to know the man is a rewarding experience.
There quickly surfaces the intensity with which he lived his life, whether his path led away from or toward God. The tears of his mother (August 27), the instructions of Ambrose (December 7) and, most of all, God himself speaking to him in the Scriptures redirected Augustine’s love of life to a life of love.

Having been so deeply immersed in creature-pride of life in his early days and having drunk deeply of its bitter dregs, it is not surprising that Augustine should have turned, with a holy fierceness, against the many demon-thrusts rampant in his day. His times were truly decadent—politically, socially, morally. He was both feared and loved, like the Master. The perennial criticism leveled against him: a fundamental rigorism.

In his day, he providentially fulfilled the office of prophet. Like Jeremiah and other greats, he was hard-pressed but could not keep quiet. “I say to myself, I will not mention him,/I will speak in his name no more./But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,/imprisoned in my bones;/I grow weary holding it in,/I cannot endure it” (Jeremiah 20:9).


Augustine is still acclaimed and condemned in our day. He is a prophet for today, trumpeting the need to scrap escapisms and stand face-to-face with personal responsibility and dignity.


“Too late have I loved you, O Beauty of ancient days, yet ever new! Too late I loved you! And behold, you were within, and I abroad, and there I searched for you; I was deformed, plunging amid those fair forms, which you had made. You were with me, but I was not with you. Things held me far from you—things which, if they were not in you, were not at all. You called, and shouted, and burst my deafness. You flashed and shone, and scattered my blindness. You breathed odors and I drew in breath—and I pant for you. I tasted, and I hunger and thirst. You touched me, and I burned for your peace” (St. Augustine, Confessions).

Patron Saint of:



Catholic Charities USA, founded in 1910, is a membership organization serving one
of the nation’s largest private social service networks. Today, more than 1600 local Catholic Charities agencies and institutions across the country—including Catholic Charities, Diocese of Youngstown - provide social services to nearly seven million people in need each year, regardless of religious, ethnic, racial or social background. Visit for more information.

2013 Annual Bishop’s Appeal for Catholic Charities and Church.  

The in Church/parish appeal is now underway.  Please consider a gift to help support the work of Catholic Charities and other ministries of the Diocese of Youngstown


Parents and Teachers. That parents and teachers may help the new generation to grow in upright conscience and life.

The Church in Africa. That the local Church in Africa, faithfully proclaiming the Gospel, may promote peace and justice.

Corporal Works of Mercy:  The seven practices of charity toward our neighbor

  1. Feed the hungry
  2. Give drink to the thirsty
  3. Clothe the naked
  4. Shelter the homeless
  5. Visit the sick
  6. Visit those in prison
  7. Bury the dead

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See our website at for links to the our ministries and services.    
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