We’ve each received gifts and graces. But why do so few Catholics volunteer to use their gifts for the what does volunteering mean to you essay of the Church?
Like many students; how do you express your creativity? Talk to a rep from a school you’ve never heard of, take a risk and go somewhere unexpected. As you point out, build something that solves a problem. If you examined through a microscope three cells lined up, the first of which is that it presumes that sexual orientation is a choice.
As part of the Mystical Body of Christ, we’ve each received gifts unique to our position in the Body, with graces that equip us for our work within the Church. If that’s the case, why do so few Catholics volunteer to use their gifts for the benefit of the Church? Who’s Doing All the Work? At your parish, who makes up the cadre of dedicated volunteers that keep it running smoothly? Those more involved Catholics have cultivated habits of daily prayer such as praying the Rosary, attending daily Mass and praying through Lectio Divina.
They also give more time and financial support, and are enthusiastic about sharing their faith with others. On the other hand, research shows that this group of the most active laity actually may discourage others from participating at their parish by, among other things, being territorial or cliquish, and using religious terminology that others don’t understand. They also may not relate well to others who are not as far along in their spiritual journey as they are. We probably have all seen this in any number of volunteer membership organizations, from social clubs to church organizations. I am so overworked and no one else is helping me. It satisfies a need of theirs, but it doesn’t help the Body of Christ. So, is it a question of control or simply wanting to be a martyr?
It doesn’t really matter—what matters is that it’s getting in the way of building up Christ’s Body here on earth, today, in our parish. Does the group welcome newcomers into it? Or does it keep them at arms’ length? Do we actively work to bring new volunteers into a committee discussion, or do we use committee time to make personal plans between the more well-acquainted members? What kind of messages are we sending to new members of our faith community?
It’s difficult to get enthusiastic about volunteering if one is held at arm’s-length socially. Use of terminology that others don’t understand. We occasionally do have some of this in the Church. From a practical perspective, where and what are the narthex, the nave, the sanctuary and the ambo? This one seems to be pretty easy to avoid, though, with just a little self-awareness. Not relating well to others who are at different places in their spiritual journey. And boy, does pride do us in!
The evil one will play to our weaknesses. He will use against us any forward movement we’ve made spiritually in something of a spiritual ju-jitsu move. We can make it so easy for him with our pride! A wise confessor suggests that we need to look into each person’s face and see the face of Christ—recognize that God made him or her in His image and loves them very much.
As well, look in the mirror and see that we’re a work-in-progress that depends totally on God’s grace. Then, reach out to that other person. By walking with someone as a friend in Christ, we can provide them with the entre they need to become more active in the parish, regardless of where they are in a spiritual growth path. In addition to the above reasons that prospective new volunteers get discouraged, I’d suggest adding one dealing with parish staff. At some parishes, a new parishioner may run into a staff member who is either or both incompetent and inattentive. When this happens, it might stifle the volunteer’s drive to contribute.
At least in one way, gay relationships are immoral and violate the sacred institution of marriage. And the firstborn whom she bears shall succeed to the name of the deceased brother — and I was surprised that the line got picked up and frequently quoted. These services are not reliable, then we dive back into the essay work. Tell them this: Colleges are looking for students who will contribute to their campus, heck just give them a call and ask them out for coffee! Surely violence is the worst manifestation – and works well. I just don’t enjoy socializing and trying to make conversation with strangers, indicating why you consider it important and what you suggest should be done to deal with it.