Now is a time for us to be people who live and move and step out by faith. Faith must be the driving force that moves us to action. We live in a society where evil seems to be winning. Each day as I turn on the TV or listen to the radio or read online it seems that we are overcome and overwhelmed by evil. From migrants treated inhumanely at our boarders, to children killed in our streets, to yet another domestic terrorist engaging in Mass killings. A culture of death and injustice that seeks to turn us against each other instead of turning us toward each other. We are becoming a society of exclusion and unwelcome instead of inclusion and welcome. Racism, bigotry and hatred has raised its ugly head.
I refuse to be discouraged and left to anger and fear or to allow hatred to change me. This is a time of action, it is time that we truly step out on faith as Abraham did and stand with marginalized and rejected. To let people all people know they are valued, loved and welcome. in our vision statement we say:
“St. Joseph Catholic Church is a welcoming, dynamic and diverse community of believers, representative of the Kingdom of God, with one heart and many faces. We welcome all those who seek to grow in Christ through our worship, educational and social ministries. We serve those who feel marginalized, forgotten and unloved, in the name of Jesus Christ.”
There are many in our nation, our society our city who feel unwelcomed and are afraid, we must not only stand with them but we must walk with them. We must be willing to step out in faith into their future with them. In the second reading lets look at Paul’s letter to the Hebrews:
“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place
that he was to receive as an inheritance;
he went out, not knowing where he was to go.
By faith he sojourned in the promised land as in a foreign country,”
There are those who have sojourned to our land, finding in it a place of promise and hope, but instead again and again they find themselves unwelcomed, unloved, mistreated and demonized. All human being must be treated humanely. All possess in their very nature the divine imprint, namely made in God’s image. No human is an animal, no human should be treated as such. We have a responsibility to make people feel loved, respected and valued. Here at St. Joseph we are going to welcome those who feel unwelcomed. We open our doors to immigrants, to those who seek a place of welcome, we desire them, need them and place them at high value and will do whatever it takes that they experience the highest level of respect and regard.