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God can do more with parishes

By: Father Mike Carroll, St. Teresa of Avila Church
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God can only do so much with us as individuals, but can do so much more with us as a community or parish. Christ called his apostles individually but they soon formed a community, especially with meals shared together in the evening time. It was during these evening meals that the apostles asked Jesus the deeper meaning of his parables and his teachings. Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection revealed to mankind the depth of God’s love for all of us. His 40 days with the apostles after the resurrection strengthened their faith in Christ as the messiah. It was now their turn to teach and live the good news of the fullness of life that Christ offers. Christ told them that he would send the Holy Spirit who would teach them everything and remind them of all that he taught them “When he had been at table with them, he told them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father about which they had heard him speak; for John baptized you with water, but in a few days, you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 1: 4-5). After Christ’s ascension, the apostles left the Mount of Olives and went back to Jerusalem. The apostles joined in continuous prayer with Mary, the mother of Jesus. On Pentecost, they received the gifts of the Holy Spirit and were no longer afraid. The Lord wanted more from his apostles than a comfortable spiritual existence. With Pentecost, they knew that they were Spirit driven to share the good news. It is within community that we receive the fullness of God’s presence and love. It is also within community that we are nourished and inspired to go forth and bring the good news to our worlds. We are limited by our own resources, but as a truly loving parish or community, God can work marvels through us. Family is our primary community, which is followed by our schools, workplaces, churches, and neighborhoods. Let us listen and pray within our communities, so that God’s spirit has a greater chance of being alive and vibrant. “Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful.”