If summer were six months long, it would still be too short for most of us.  And it goes by so quickly.  So here we are on this last day of August: the kids are back in school, the older ones are packing up for college, it’s time to sign up for a new round of activities that will keep us hurrying from place to place in the weeks ahead, we’ll soon be picking apples, setting out mums and looking for the perfect pumpkin.  A new season filled with many changes.  One special consideration, let’s not get so wrapped up in our own  changes that we forget our brothers and sisters who have lost loved ones, home and livelihoods to Hurricane Harvey.  Recovery will be a long term affair that will require our continuing and continuous prayer, care, and attention. 


The readings for our Sunday liturgies in late summer and early autumn follow a pattern similar to the quickened pace of everyday life at this time of year.  We are now into the later chapters of Matthew’s gospel, which reflect an increasing urgency.  Jesus is on the path to that final, fateful trip to Jerusalem.  There is no time to waste as Jesus is determined to repeatedly challenge all of his listeners to grasp what it means to be a true disciple.  We are also at the end of our summer’s long reading of St. Paul’s letter to the Romans.  He too, seems determined to fill his closing lines with every sort of urgent encouragement.  By the end of September, we’ll take up Paul’s letter to his friends in Philippi, one he wrote from a prison cell, and marked by his call to “conduct yourselves in a way worthy of the gospel of Christ.”  All together, it’s a lot to take in, but it is a season of unavoidable change.


If you’re looking for some additional inspiration, the calendar of the Saints at this time of year is star-studded, and as varied as the colors of autumn leaves!  We have gospel evangelists, Matthew on September 21 and Luke on October 15; Doctors of the Church, John Chrysostom September 13, Jerome on September 30 and Theresa of Avila on October 15.  Angels, you ask?  Certainly!  Michael Gabriel and Raphael on September 29 and the Holy Guardian Angels on October 2.  Marian feasts? Oh, yes, and under such varied titles: The birth of Mary September 8, the Holy Name of Mary September12, Mother of Sorrows September 15, Queen of the Rosary October 7.  There are great favorites, too, Vincent de Paul September 27 and Francis of Assisi October 4. There is a plethora of holy martyrs, our heroes, nearly every other day it seems. And in the middle of it all the great feast of the Triumph of the Cross on September 14.  Take time to know at least one a little better.  So many and all so different…perfect for a season of change!

                                      Deacon Greg