Thank you to Mr Bostelman and Year 12 for their preparation of this week’s Community Liturgy.
Friday 6 September the Community Mass will be prepared by students in Year 11. Family members of Year 11 students are especially welcome.
Next Friday, 30 August
- Mass commences at 7:30am
- Mass will be in the Saint Louis Sports Centre
- Our community will be augmented by dads, grandads and other father figures – as well as students from Primary and Secondary.
Community Liturgy summary
- Where: College Chapel
- Time: 8:00am – 8:30 am
- When: every Friday in term time
… to Year 3 students, Mia Conway and Thomas Archibald who made their first Reconciliation this week in the parish of Our Lady of Grace, North Beach.
GOOD NEWS for: 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
From East and West they will come to take their place in the kingdom of God
The reflection for this Sunday’s Gospel is a homily by Jesuit priest, Fr Richard Leonard. Fr Richard Leonard SJ is the Director of the Australian Catholic Office for Film and Broadcasting, is a member of the Australian Catholic Media Council and is author of Preaching to the Converted, Paulist Press, New York, 2006.
Salvation has, rightly, always been a big issue. Who was going to make it, how it was going to happen and when would Christ return in glory have captured the imagination of each generation of believers?
The roots of this thinking can be found in today's Gospel. The earliest Christians, especially the Gentiles, saw that the Jews had been given every opportunity for salvation. They were the Chosen people. They had the Law and the Prophets. They were looking for the Messiah. Jesus, however, did not come as they expected or act as they hoped, so they rejected him and his followers. Within a generation after Jesus' death the Jews were persecuting the Christians and expelling them from the synagogues. The Christians took comfort from saying that in the salvation ‘race’ the Jews might have started as the favourites, but they had missed the start and were now coming last.
This way of thinking had a strong effect on the Church. While we have always believed in the mercy and love of God, at different times we have been hostile to other religions, other denominations and the secular world. We have often needed to express this in absolute terms about who was going to be saved and, more importantly, who was not!
The Second Vatican Council, however, reflected on the Church's experience of working side by side with religious people and secular humanists throughout the world who were as committed as we are to justice, love and freedom. In the ‘Declaration on the relationship of the Church to non-Christian religions’, the bishops thought more generously about how God has a relationship with all people who in turn relate to God, even if they do not name it in the same way we are able to. The Council did not resile from believing that Jesus is the way to the Father, but they also affirmed that God can work in an infinite number of ways to assist people to salvation. It is Church teaching now that our relationship to all people who share the best of our values must be characterised by acceptance, collaboration, dialogue and charity.
This does not make salvation any less important. It just clarifies for us that it is God, not us, who does the saving and the judging. Christian salvation marks us out as people who know who we are following, where we are going, how we are getting there and why this world, and the next, matters to us. Salvation gives our lives meaning, direction and purpose.
The way we live out this salvation should be irresistible to others. As the folk hymn sings, ‘They will know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes, they'll know we are Christians by our love.’
© Richard Leonard