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  Word To Life

Sunday Scripture Readings, June 9, 2013

By Jeff Hedglen
Catholic News Service

June 9, Tenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Cycle C. Readings:

1) 1 Kings 17:17-24

Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13

2) Galatians 1:11-19

Gospel: Luke 7:11-17

A few years ago my wife and I regularly hosted a young adult gathering at our house. It was named Frassati Friday, for Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, a man who as a young adult was very enthusiastic about the Catholic faith. At one particular Frassati Friday we started with what I thought was a simple question: "Why are you Catholic?" What followed was a sacred three hours of deep sharing of life and faith far beyond my wildest imaginations.

I was expecting answers such as, "My parents baptized me," or "I have never really thought about it," or possibly, "The Eucharist and other sacraments." What actually happened was personal sharing about how Jesus had impacted their lives, mostly through other Catholics or in youth group settings such as confirmation class or retreats, and even how some had fallen away and had an arduous journey back to the Catholic faith.

Emotions exploded, tears flowed, hearts swelled and everyone in attendance encountered Jesus in telling the stories of how the Savior had affected each of our lives.

This week's readings have a similar theme. Elijah encounters a woman, brings her son back to life, and, as a result, she believes Elijah is from God; Paul shares his conversion story; Jesus raises a young man back to life, which causes a whole crowd of people to praise God and begin to believe in Jesus as God's son.

We all have a story to tell about why we are Catholic and why we believe in Jesus. Some of the stories are dramatic and involve huge life changes; others are less dramatic but equally significant because God does not only rescue people at their lowest, he also comes to many through good families, strong faith communities and regular participation in the life of the church.

But it is not enough to know our story; we have to share our story. If Elijah, Paul and the Gospel writers had not told their stories, we might very well not believe what we believe. Our Catholic Church has called us to a new evangelization. Sharing who Jesus is to you is at the heart of it. The first step is to know why you are Catholic; the next is to let someone else know.

QUESTIONS: Why are you Catholic? Why do you believe in Jesus? Have you ever shared this with anyone? Who are five people you could share this with in the next month?

SCRIPTURE TO BE ILLUSTRATED: "They glorified God, exclaiming, 'A great prophet has arisen in our midst,' and 'God has visited his people.'" -- Luke 7:16


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