St Michael’s services are continuing as usual with Mass celebrated every Sunday at 9am. All are welcome to attend. Contact us on 0427 115 468 or email@example.com for details of the venue in Surfers Paradise.
Intents for September and October
Good works Spiritual progress
Renewal of heart Christ as truth
Reality of all things eternal Tact and tolerance
Videos of sermons now on our website
Each week during the service we now video the sermon and put the video onto our website www.smlcc.com.au. You can also see the videos on you tube. Search for BpRichard Liberal Catholic Church https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_jZ7clcSqdToMY5H2Du2Jg. Our first attempts have been a bit amateurish but we’re improving.
Our hearts are ever restless till they find their rest in Thee
These words are taken from the Confiteor which is at the beginning, preparation stage of the Eucharist. They summarise, in one sentence, a deeply-based impulse in our psyche which may take years and lifetimes for us to understand fully. It refers to our hearts being “ever restless” while we try to find and achieve the final goal of the sentence’s message, “rest in Thee”. The final goal is union with God, or the Christ within, or a similar outcome depending on the particular spiritual path you are following.
Let us now link this journey with the Intent of the 13th Sunday after Trinity which is “Good Works”. In the Gospel for 13th Trinity, St Matthew records Jesus outlining profound teachings that link external physical actions with the intent and fundamental quality of the person performing the actions. This is “the good tree bringeth forth good fruit” concept. Then Jesus goes on to remind his listeners that unless we as individuals (or as communities) have a firm connection with God’s Law and base our actions on that law, the outcomes of our endeavours will be similar to “building a house on sand”.
At present in Australia and around the world we are all, at different levels, impacted by experiencing the Covid-19 virus. The number of people who can gather in a home or in public places differs in different locations. We all react in our own way to the restrictions, some calmly and some not so calmly. Some of the less publicized statistics include a spike in the number of suicides, especially amongst younger people, and the level of domestic violence. The general anxiety about work loss, separation from family, friends and work colleagues and general disconnection from the broader community is causing severe impacts. This is an important wake-up call for all of us to look at the extent to which our society protects and supports its members. How do we function? How do we manage the interconnections between individuals, families, communities, cities, all of which are important for our mental health and sense of well-being?
Looking at our daily lives now and comparing them with the way we lived nine months ago is an extremely valuable activity. Consider, for example, the employment situation for many of us. For some, circumstances dictate that any job is acceptable as long as it generates sufficient income to sustain living. Work equals survival. For others, the sudden cessation of considerable pressure of continuous travel combined with long work days across several time zones may have come as something of a relief. In the enforced quite time, such people can reflect on the impact such high pressure jobs have on their health, and more broadly, on their potential to interact with and nurture the community around them and the wider environment.
We know that a capitalist society based on and relying on consumerism is unsustainable at all levels, personal and more generally. When we reflect on our occupations in this quiet time, I think that we can appreciate that, actually, the jobs or occupations that we had before were not a “given”, an automatic “right”. Our occupations can now be seen to be connected in hundreds of ways to other occupations, business structures, society patterns and other people. We might reflect, taking a longer view, on our former level of interconnectedness and even on whether our former occupations were the most appropriate for us.
Returning to the theme of our heart’s restlessness, we might consider the extent to which the restlessness is increased when we wander away from activities genuinely aligned with our needs and desires. This does not necessarily mean that we should suddenly change our employment situation or our daily occupations, but maybe we can concentrate on more appropriate alignment of our hearts and minds before undertaking our daily activities.
How do we do that? We do it in small steps: firstly, a short prayer to remember our growing connectedness with our deeper Self; secondly, remembering that any activities that offer opportunities for service to others are in accordance with God’s laws; finally some quiet reflection at the start and finish of the day. In these daily reflections we can allow ourselves to respond to inner thoughts, urgings, directions and new insights. As we align with the Path intended for us individually, we simultaneously stop building “sand castles” and we reduce the heart’s restlessness.
In spite of anxieties about the future, quiet times can be very valuable. Let’s take the possibilities that these times allow us to grow spiritually with our feet on the Path to “rest in Thee”.
With God’s blessing