Saturday, December 31, 2011

Looking ahead

Let us be 'different' for a happy 2012

By Father Perry D. Leiker

Happy new year!

Of course, as a faith community, we already began a new year on the First Sunday of Advent. We got a head start and our focus couldn’t have been better — welcoming in the new year by opening our lives more deeply to the Christ, the incarnation, and even focusing more clearly on the day of his return.

With such a tremendous beginning, this new year Jan. 1 should also begin so well. 2012, hope-FULL-y, will bring more peace, more security, more love, more generosity, more caring, more healing, more responsibility, more faith, more forgiveness, more creativity, more life than in 2011.

We just finished a war. Could we be more blessed and grateful? But is that enough? Shouldn’t we be seeking every way possible to be sure we don’t enter into another one? Shouldn’t we, especially as followers of Jesus, be seeking ways to build bridges of understanding? Shouldn’t we recognize and respond to the many poor of our own land as well as those throughout the world? Shouldn’t we be trying in every way possible to fix the structures in our society to prevent the possibility for poverty, sickness and hunger from continuing or even from developing in the first place? Shouldn’t we be seeking to build the kingdom of God by building a world that is more connected, more united, more full of understanding? Shouldn’t we be open to people of different races, cultures, faiths, preferences, values, without being constantly threatened by those who see things differently than we do? Shouldn’t we be fostering understanding and respect even though we might believe in God differently or even not at all?

Happy new year! If 2012 is to be different — better; then, so must we be different and better!

Happy new year! A blessed 2012!

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

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