From Father's Desk

My Dear Parish Family,

Over the past few weeks, we have been taking some S.T.E.P.S. toward growing with God. We are taking stock of our faith and seeking to move beyond an “8th Grade Faith” to a more substantive, relational, and intimate understanding of God and his desire for us to live the abundant life.

S.T.E.P.S. is a shorthand way of summarizing the different ways we are invited to grow in our relationship with God. We take S.T.E.P.S. to grow in our faith. S.T.E.P.S. stands for Service, Tithe, Engage, Prayer, Share.

It has been great seeing how you have shared your faith and your love for our parish with our lawn sign campaign. Be creative with those signs! And if you would, send me a photo; drop me a line: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Last week, our theme focused on the “E” with engaging the faith. We heard the advice of Paul as he wrote to his friend Timothy: “Pursue righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience, and gentleness. Compete well for the faith. Lay hold of eternal life, to which you were called…” (1 Tm 6:11-12) These action words are callings to engage our faith, to strive to grow. One of the best ways to engage our faith is to share the gift of faith with others. Together, we can ask the tough questions, listen to one another, share life, and strengthen each other on the path. One of the best ways to journey together is to join a small group. Small Groups are a great place to grow in the faith because they offer a beautiful chance to share life and embrace our journey of faith together. I participated in our men’s small group during Lent, with our book “Seriously God?” It was a blessing to get to know the guys and experience our growth in faith. It was wonderful to witness the group growing together. Pray about if God is inviting you to join a small group.

This week our theme is prayer. How do we pray with God? A while back we shared a different book with you: I Heard God Laugh, from Matthew Kelly. We preached a message series on that book. Therein, we met the prayer process (page 41 if you still have the book). Here is a link from Matthew Kelly explaining the stages. Here is a link to my bulletin article from that week. (Blast from the past!) Prayer is above all a conversation with God.

In our Gospel today, we hear a very simple prayer: “Increase our faith!” Sometimes, simple prayers like these are the best. “Jesus, I trust in you!” and “My Lord and My God!” and “Lord have mercy!” come to mind as other simple prayers we can offer in the moment. Sometimes, we can lack the words for prayer; we might not know what to say. These short prayers can be very helpful to give word to the thoughts and desires of our hearts.

When we think of prayer as conversation, talking and listening, we acknowledge that it can be a challenge to listen. Listening to God requires a quiet heart, a stillness, and a peace to hear how He may be communicating with us, through the Scriptures, through creation, through friends, and even through that still quiet voice that speaks from within. It is this listening above all else that we need to practice as we grow in our practice of prayer. Friends in faith also help us to hear God speak. Hence, small groups being a great way to help us identify how God may be speaking to us, what He might be saying, to recognize the ways God communicates.

This week take time to ask God in prayer what your next S.T.E.P.S. in faith should be. Perhaps he is inviting you to join a small group for our next message series “Good News” starting 10/16.

Fr. Wilson