This past year, 12-18 men of the parish gathered many of the Friday mornings between October and June. We gathered early – 6:15a in the morning early. There was coffee – lots of it – and donuts. But most important, there were men interested in going deeper into their Catholic Christian faith. Men willing to learn. Men willing to be challenged. Men being strengthened in fraternity and fellowship. Men willing to acknowledge we are not always living up to our Call from God as husbands, fathers, soldiers for Christ. These gatherings were titled Fridays for Fathers.
I’m challenging this group of men and those who may want to join us to undertake Exodus 90. This is a 90-day spiritual exercise for men to forge their way to greater freedom in body and soul for Christ and the Church. Modern life facilitates comfort, complacency, and self-centered choices. Yet, as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has stated, “The world offers you comfort. But you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness.” Greatness – living happy, healthy, holy lives – is not an accident. It is the result of a profound choice for Christ put into practice in our daily life. Exodus 90 is designed to facilitate this choice, integration, action. Along the way, we (yes – I’m joining in!) will learn to: 1) Root our self in daily prayer; 2) Advance in spiritual freedom through self-mastery; and 3) Reach our goals with the support of a band of brothers. This program is focused on Prayer, Discipline, and Fraternity. Learn more at: https://exodus90.com/
To date, more than 30,000 men have “made the Exodus” and transformed their lives. Will you join? Our 90 days will begin August 4 – the Feast of St John Vianney – and end on November 1 – Solemnity of All Saints. If interested, please contact me: [email protected]. Our first gathering will be Friday July 30 at 6:15a in the Day Activity Center (DAC).
“The human person has a right to religious freedom. This freedom means that all men [and women] are to be immune from coercion on the part of individuals or of social groups and of any human power, in such wise that no one is to be forced to act in a manner contrary to his [or her] own beliefs, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association with others, within due limits. The [Church] further declares that the right to religious freedom has its foundation in the very dignity of the human person as this dignity is known through the revealed word of God and by reason itself. This right of the human person to religious freedom is to be recognized in the constitutional law whereby society is governed and thus it is to become a civil right. It is in accordance with their dignity as persons-that is, beings endowed with reason and free will and therefore privileged to bear personal responsibility-that all men should be at once impelled by nature and also bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth, once it is known, and to order their whole lives in accord with the demands of truth. (Dignitatis Humanae – Declaration on Religious Liberty, #2, emphasis added).
In talking with several doctors, pharmacists, teachers, and business people of different walks of life over the past few years, I’ve heard the real struggles encountered in the workplace to act and work in accord with our Catholic Christian moral principles, which both respect the person and human actions. People must always be respected, while equally realizing specific actions by people must be either permitted or denied. When faithful Catholic Christians attempt to live their professional lives according to those Catholic Christian moral principles, religious liberty should permit them to remain true to their well-formed conscience. Well-formed implies more than mere opinion or acquired habit. It implies deeply held moral positions rooted in Divine Revelation and human reason. In fact, the world is truly enriched when professionals put into action such consciences, since it enables and ennobles the particular human person and greater human society.
Holy Family, Protected & Led by Joseph, Pray for us.
~ Fr Jeremy M. Gries