Sunday, October 16, 2011

Looking ahead

Confirming our baptismal faith in the sacrament of
confirmation is a huge step. This opens us up to God
working in our lives in extraordinary ways.
(Credit: Michael J. Arvizu/St. Bernard Church)

By Father Perry D. Leiker

This weekend we celebrate a special rite with our youth who will be confirmed this year. The rite of welcoming acknowledges that God is calling them into a deeper relationship with him and with his church.

The "call of God" is a very strong theme throughout the scriptures. He calls: prophets, those who would become king; and whole nations. His call usually surprises everyone, for he often chooses the smallest, the most unrecognizable, ones who seem most unfit. Yet to those chosen, God always gives what they need to live out the call.

The Gospel, seemingly unrelated to this theme, explains what is needed from the one chosen. The time always comes when we must distinguish what belongs to God and what belongs to man. If we mix these up and fail to respond properly, our lives usually become a mess.

Confirming our baptismal faith in the sacrament of confirmation is a huge step. This opens us up to God working in our lives in extraordinary ways, pouring his Holy Spirit into our spirit, and giving us what we need to live a life that is blessed, whole, graced.

Our youth are our treasure. They truly are our future. They so often embrace our ideals with all of their being — often with refreshing innocence.

Please stop this weekend, either before or after the Saturday evening Mass when our ceremony "over our youth" will take place, to remember them in prayer. Ask God to call them from the deepest part of their spirit, to choose them in a way that they will be overwhelmed with his love, and to help them believe that he sees them as good and as his chosen ones.

Father Perry D. Leiker is St. Bernard parish administrator. Reach him at (323) 255-6142, Ext. 112.

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