“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life” (Jn 3:16).
There we have it. John 3:16. Perhaps the famous line in all of Sacred Scripture. The citation we see on signs at football games and on billboards. Why is this line so remarkable?
We could write a whole book on why. Here is one reason for your consideration: God does not start the fight, but he can end it.
God is blamed unfairly for many things. What is good is that he is God—he can handle the blame. But still, it's not always just, the anger directed at our God. Cancer—why did God do this? War—where is God to stop it? A tragic car accident–how could God allow this? The stray bullet, the divorce, the drug addiction, the teen suicide, and so on. Fingers usually point to God.
God is not the cause of evil. Read another line in this passage from John: “And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil” (Jn 3:19). Evil, death, suffering will occur inevitably. It is a part of our world and our humanity. God does not cause the pain. But God can save us from it. “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him” (Jn 3:17).
When we experience some suffering, yes, we should look to God. We won't find out why this evil happened, but we will be delivered from it.
Today, Sunday March 11th is the St. Juliana teen ministry. All teens are invited to attend our 5pm Mass and then come over to the gym for some spiritual conversation, free food, and open gym.
Tomorrow, Monday, March 12th the school board will meet, as will the men's club at 7:30pm. We will soon be accepting applications for new members for next year's school board, as the terms of a few of our members are expiring, so please consider applying if you are interested. Our school board has done terrific work this year helping plan for our future. Our school enrollment is very strong at this point, and we are excited for all the new editions to St. Juliana School in the very near future—a playground and prayer garden in the courtyard, an elevator, a STEM lab, to name a few!
My Tuesday Theology Talk this week will be on Saint Paul. We will discuss Paul's life and unpack his writings from the New Testament. All are welcome to the chapel at 7pm.
I will be at Notre Dame College Prep this Wednesday morning for the Lenten Penance service, and our RE penance service is that same Wednesday evening for the 3rd-5th year students.
Happy Saint Patrick's Day! Thursday is the legendary St. Juliana St. Patrick's Day Mass at 7pm. Our own Deacon Bob Ryan will be the homilist for the Mass. On Saturday, March 17th the Knights of Columbus St. Patrick's Day party will be at St. John Brebeuf parish. The Knights do a great job with their parties and all are encouraged to attend.
Finally, I want to thank everyone who contributed to the 2018 Annual Catholic Appeal. Believe it or not, the 2017 ACA officially closed out just recently. Our goal last year was $52,993. The amount we pledged was $68,380. The amount we actually received (pledges fulfilled) was $64,770. This is tremendous! We raised for our parish alone $11,777. These funds, combined with the TTWCI funds, are going to good use, as we continue to enhance our campus. I will keep you posted on the funds we have raised for this year's ACA as the numbers continue to come in. Thank you for your generosity. Again, this is quite an achievement.
Yours in Christ,