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04.10.16: You bid us 'come and dine'

Bulletin column for St. Mary's Parish in Griffith, Ind.

Jesus said to them, “Come, have breakfast.”

Jesus cooked and served his friends a meal.

This may seem mundane and even baffling to us, yet when you really stop to think about it, cooking for someone is a truly intimate encounter. Anyone who cooks will tell you when you make something from scratch for company, you want it to reflect how much you care about them. You want them to leave your table knowing they are loved, treasured and valued.

And, so it is around the table of our Lord, each and every time we gather for Mass. We’re coming together for an intimate encounter. We’re all called to come and dine, to truly participate and be present to God and each other in that moment.

It’s that sense of engagement that we’re really seeking to grow in developing a “Family Mass.” We’re called to full, active, conscious participation in the liturgy – both internally and externally.

As ministers of Word and Sacrament, song and hospitality, we’re all called to work together to help foster that. We want families, students and those who seem to be on the margins to feel fully part of this community when we come together to give glory and praise to our God.

We want to help reinforce an atmosphere where all who gather around our altar feel the same thing the apostles felt around Jesus’ fire in today’s Gospel. We want them to know that they’re loved, treasured and valued. They have great gifts to share. I see it every day in the classroom. Together, let’s build a culture of encouragement. Let’s work together to provide that embrace.

In joyful hope,


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