03-2018 Charism of the Month (Redemptive Suffering)
The Charisms of Saint Francis of Assisi
The word Charism is defined as "a gift of the Holy Spirit given to an individual or a group to build up the Kingdom of God … “ Each month during this Year of Connection, we highlight a different Charism of our Parish Patron. This month of March with Holy Week and Good Friday, we highlight the Redemptive Suffering of Saint Francis of Assisi.
Most of us would normally not consider "suffering" as a gift but as a burden. However, Jesus Our Lord has revealed to us the transformative value of suffering. That is to say, our hardship and crosses can help us to think of others instead of self. We can remember as children when we complained about a pain, injury, too much homework, or other hardship, our Parents responded with “offer it up.” When we are ill, physically or otherwise, we can “offer up” our suffering for the benefit of others. Is this not what Christ did on the Cross for us?
Because of His love for us, Jesus “offered up” the agony of His Crucifixion for the redemption of humankind. Jesus told His Apostles at the Last Supper “a man can have no greater love than to lay down his life for his friends” (John 15). Jesus laid down His life for our sake, and He asks that we do the same.
Saint Francis of Assisi understood, believed and practiced “Redemptive Suffering”. He endured much suffering throughout his life in response to his call from God “Build My Church”.
We believe that through the Paschal Mystery, we are members of the Body of Christ. Our suffering united with Christ, is offered for the redemption of others.
As we move closer to Holy Week and Good Friday, let us reflect on our own suffering and find meaning by uniting them to the Suffering of Jesus Our Lord.
Father Richard York, Pastor and
Jeanette Lindish, Director for Evangelization