There is a story that you might have heard
about a gentleman who had a reawakening of his
faith. Upon his newfound desire to devote himself
to his faith, he went to the local church and spoke
with the pastor. After listening to the man for a
while, the pastor said that it was wonderful the man
had a reawakening of his faith and wanted to take
God and Jesus Christ more seriously, that he wanted
to worship the one true God and learn more about
what it meant to follow him. As the conversation
progressed, the pastor told the man that they have a
great but small parish community and really
depended upon the people to keep the place going.
So, the pastor continued, “Would you like to help
out with worship in some capacity-say reading the
readings or the choir or helping with the
collection?” The man replied, “No”. “Would you
be able to assist with one of the parish fundraisers?”
The man said that he wasn’t all that interested in
doing that. “You seem pleasant enough, would you
be able to help out with hospitality and greeting
people as they come to Mass and join for fellowship
at our weekly “Coffee And” afterwards?” The man
said, “I don’t think so”. After a few more questions
like this, the pastor then told the man, “I definitely
think that it is great you want to devote yourself to
the practice of the faith again, but I’m not sure this
is the right church for you. Go to the church whose
address I am writing down for you. Come back
afterwards and let me know what you think”.
Understanding, the man left the priest on cordial
terms. However, two days later he returned. The
pastor asked, “Did you get the chance to visit the
church I recommended?” The man replied, “Sort
of, but I’m confused. I went to the address you
listed on the paper but only saw what looked like
the foundation of a torn down church and sign. Did
I get the address wrong or did it move?” The pastor
responded, “No. It didn’t move. It’s just that when
someone expresses that they wish to be devoted to
their faith but are unwilling to be involved, that is
what happens. Unless you are willing to help that is
the most appropriate church for you because that is
what happens when a person does not do his or her
part. Faith without works is dead.

In Him, Fr. D