New members may register in the parish by picking up a registration form in the vestibule of the church and returning it to the collection basket/mailing it to the office, or contact the parish office and we will mail one to you. Welcome!
Join us for Twelve Apostles' 3rd annual Fall Harvest festivities on Saturday, October 15!
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Our work of mercy September is
the spiritual work of mercy
"To comfort the afflicted”.
Our work of mercy this month is the spiritual work of mercy “to comfort the afflicted”. What does this mean? Aren’t all the works of mercy ways of “comforting the afflicted?”
We are certainly called to ease other’s afflictions in a corporal, or physical, way—sheltering the homeless, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked—but this spiritual work of mercy, “to comfort the afflicted”, calls us to be present with others in their suffering.
We tend to avoid “comforting the afflicted”; we either try to solve the “problem” or dismiss a person’s suffering. Their suffering makes us feel uncomfortable. We might listen, but not truly be present to them.
What we fail to do is to have “compassion.” The Latin roots of this word can be broken down to “cum” (with) and “passio” (suffering). Having compassion for someone is “to suffer with” that person. Compassionate people try to envision themselves in others’ shoes. Often all a person wants is to be “heard.” That alone can comfort them in their trials.
Pope Francis pairs “comfort” with “compassion” and “mercy.” His hope in proclaiming the Year of Mercy was that the Church would never “tire of extending mercy” and would “be ever patient in offering compassion and comfort.”
Remember that comforting a sorrowful person does not usually mean fixing what caused the sorrow. It's seldom in our power to do that. But just as "joy shared is doubled," "sorrow shared is halved."
In a very real way, “comforting the afflicted” has spiritual benefits for both parties. Not only does the afflicted person feel “heard,” but the person listening becomes an image of Christ, who bore all of our sufferings on the wood of the cross.
Jesus said, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
The Christmas Banquet was a wonderful event, and Holy Trinity and Twelve Apostles generously provided over 1000 personal items for inmates gift bags. Perhaps more importantly, we made sure that each of the children of the inmates, regardless of their age, had a wonderful gift from their Dad to open that day.
Gina Hanna of Beauty for Ashes Ministry, prepared a short video to share special moments at the banquet with us. She said, "I hope this video captures the impact that you and your parishes had on these men and their families. It was such a blessing to partner with you this year."