Letter From The Pastor
Dear Parishioners and Visitors,
During Holy Time of Lent, we are reflecting on three Lenten practices: Fasting, Prayer and Almsgiving. Today we reflect on Almsgiving.
Someone once said: “Of the three marks of Lent — prayer, fasting and almsgiving — almsgiving is surely the most neglected”. And yet, in the only place where the Bible brings all three together, the inspired author puts the emphasis firmly on the last: “Prayer and fasting are good, but better than either is almsgiving accompanied by righteousness … It is better to give alms than to store up gold; for almsgiving saves one from death and expiates every sin. Those who regularly give alms shall enjoy a full life” (Tob 12:8-9). Jesus presented almsgiving as a necessary part of Christian life: “when you give alms, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by men. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing” (Mt 6:2-3). He does not say IF you give alms, but WHEN. Like fasting and prayer, almsgiving is non-negotiable.
Indeed, many Catholics extend the concept of almsgiving beyond money to include time and talent as well, donating a portion of these to worthy causes. Sometimes all we can give is a smile, but sometimes that is the greatest sacrifice, the greatest prayer, and indeed the most generous and most sacrificial alms. As God gave himself entirely to us, so we give ourselves entirely to Him. In the Eucharist, He holds nothing back. He gives us His body, blood, soul and divinity — everything He has. That’s the giving we need to imitate. Viva Cristo Rey!