Friday, August 10, 2007
clevelandpriest.blogspot.com readers! Yes, another guest blogger until the always-famous Fr. V. returns!
So, the FEST. For some, the FEST is the event of the year, for others not their most favorite event, and yet others who work and volunteer, well, it may feel like an Israel in Egypt enactment. However, despite the weather and the craziness this year, it was amazing to see approximately 15,000 people gather to celebrate their Catholic faith in the rain!
When one gets past the glitz and the glam, the bells and the whistles, and the give-aways that usually end-up lining Euclid Avenue after the event (that’s littering by the way), there is perhaps a deeper challenge here which applies to both the FEST lover and hater. The challenge is this: how do I share my faith with others so as to draw them into a deeper relationship with Christ?
All of us enter into the Catholic Community through Baptism, we are sealed with the gifts of the Holy Spirit in Confirmation, and our initiation reaches its pinnacle or fullness in the Eucharist. Since we have these tremendous gifts (wisdom, understanding, counsel, knowledge, piety, fear of the Lord, and fortitude) we must use them, they must be shared with others for if they are not, the gifts are no longer a gift. For a gift to truly be a gift, it must be used for its intended purpose, not bottled up inside. Therefore, challenge yourself to use your God-given gifts and talents to bring others to Him, to help others know Christ, and to celebrate the Spirit living in you! You see, the FEST is just an event; the FEST is one unique day out of the year, unique just like the day before and the day after, today, and everyday to come!!! But, if we daily actualize our call to holiness, use our gifts and talents, then, we will become more deeply aware of who we truly are – the Living Body of Christ!
Live today in such a way that it draws others to Christ, not in grandiose ways but rather, in the simple tasks of every day life, like St. Therese of Lisieux, in your own simple way. The degree in which others do not see Christ in us/you is the degree in which we/you are all challenged to grow and become more like our/your Teacher and Master.
NOTE: The FEST is in its 7th year and occurred this past Sunday, Aug 5th. It is a one-day free event that is open to anyone that wishes to go. The Cleveland diocese puts it on and this year, Michael W. Smith was the performer. You can check out the FEST webpage at www.thefest.us -HP
NOTE 2: Fr. V should be back tomorrow and from my understanding, he shall be posting yet again. Thank you for all of your comments on my blogs this week, the posts have been wonderful! Thanks -HP