Today millions of us will gather with family, friends or neighbors and spend the day watching the Pre-Game Show and the Super Bowl. The game results in a reduction of the crime rate while the game is played and an incredible amount of money that is gambled, won or lost. It is incredible how one game takes over the whole country. There are lots of food and drink to go with the game, and for many it becomes a long standing tradition.

With all the discussion about refugees, closing the borders to the undocumented and building a wall on the Mexican border, Cardinal Joseph Tobin has released a statement of concern by him and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops about the plight of refugees seeking safety and asylum. One of the items in his statement is that our country is one that has always welcomed immigrants to its shores, and most of us are children and grandchildren of immigrants. Catholic Charities has always helped in the resettlement of the immigrants and refugees, providing housing, as well as legal, educational, financial, protective and counseling initiatives. This is a response to the Lord’s command in the Gospels to care for all of God’s people.

Catholic Charities has committed to assist 51 individuals from 12-16 households in coming into the archdiocese. These refugees will be from Syria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq and Afghanistan. They are expected to arrive in March of this year. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will provide the necessary finances, but Catholic Charities will accept the rest of the necessary assistance. There is a list of items needed to help the refugees settle in the archdiocese. Catholic Charities is reaching out to all the parishes for any kind of help they can give. The list is available in the rectory if anyone is interested in helping.

Many of our ancestors came to this country seeking a better life as they escaped poverty and the devastation of the war. The world has changed a great deal in these past few years, so the plight of refugees has become more critical to them and to all of us. Closing borders and erecting walls are not ways of welcoming those who want to come to our country seeking a better life, away from war and hate.

It’s contrary to what we believe as Catholics and the basis of life here in America.

Today’s Gospel is about letting our light shine for others that they may recognize the good deeds we do as we care for them, following the example of Jesus. He calls us to be the light for the world to recognize him in one another, including the refugees and the immigrants. WWJD?

Next week, there will be the final count for the Christmas collection and the results of the Mass Survey.

Thank you for your cooperation and patience.

HAPPY ORDINARY TIME!!

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