Christ calls each one of us to Himself. He reveals Himself as the fullness of Truth, as the Way to salvation, as the Person through Whom we find Life eternal, and He invites us to follow Him. What’s more, He does not simply call us to discipleship empty-handed. He has blessed us with innumerable gifts, and He invites us to use those gifts in loving service as His disciples — to show forth His love and truth to the world using the gifts He has graciously given.
How do we respond to Christ’s call? What is the proper response of a Christian disciple? A resounding “yes,” of course! But what does that “yes” look like when it is lived out each day?
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops tells us that Christian discipleship is lived out through stewardship. As Bishop John J. McRaith put it, “Once one chooses to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, stewardship is not an option” (Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response).
Our “yes” to Christ’s call involves recognizing that He has gifted us with more than we can fathom — even our very lives are gifts from the Lord — and in gratitude, we offer those gifts back to God in loving service. It is an honor and a privilege as much as it is a call and a responsibility to live as a Christian steward, and on Saturday, Sept. 23, we will dive deeper into what that means for each one of us during our parish Stewardship Retreat.
We encourage everyone to come.
The retreat will be held from 8:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. at St. Rita. Fr. Godfrey Mullen, OSB, a veteran retreat leader and the current Rector of the Cathedral of St. Peter in Belleville, Ill. joins us as retreat presenter. Fr. Godfrey will present talks and guide us through periods of reflection together. The day will also include time for fellowship. The retreat will cap off with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. It is sure to be a blessed and fulfilling day!
“The primary purpose of this retreat is to provide time for reflection and an encounter with the Living God,” Fr. Godfrey says. “The preaching is meant to inspire prayer so that disciples of Jesus might have an easier time hearing His call to serve the Church and to follow Him.”
In a world full of so much noise, it can be hard for us to hear Christ’s call, and difficult for us to focus on what’s important. Yet, Christ continues to call us — He wants us to come to Him. Making intentional time to encounter Him can be life-altering. In fact, it should be! And that’s precisely what the retreat is for. Come with hearts wide open! Come ready to see what Christ has in store, and He is sure to richly bless you for it!
“I encourage everyone to come for many reasons,” Fr. Godfrey says. “This time of reflection will aid in your own personal growth as a disciple. It will also offer you time together as a parish community to grow closer to one another, united in Christ’s call. And it will give you a greater understanding of the four pillars of stewardship — hospitality, prayer, formation, and service — and how those four pillars work together as an integrated call to follow Jesus.”
Join us on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 8:30 a.m. All parishioners are invited. Breakfast and lunch will be provided. For more information, visit saintritaparish.org.