I have been hesitant to dive into the conversation surrounding the latest scandals, but working to promote good stewardship and discipleship leads me to many Catholics who question why. The questions I have received include: “How can I support a church with this type of scandal?”: “Why are we asked to practice good stewardship when others clearly have not?”: and the most common, “What happens now?” Personally, I too am upset, confused, disappointed and fooled. I had the opportunity to meet and sit with one of the accused at a Catholic Awards conference, and yes, this man was being honored. Looking back at that experience, I am left feeling fooled for having thought this was a man of God, a Shepherd, a model for Christian discipleship.
I think we have all asked the question recently, “What now?” It becomes too easy in these situations to jump to conclusions or make rash judgements without due diligence. Many, including the Pope, have advocated for a time of repentance and prayer. The most important tool we have in our “stewardship toolkit,” as I often call it, is the power of prayer. Drawing closer to our relationship with Jesus through prayer provides comfort and clarity. Whether you are in a time of hardship or profound joy, fully committing to the act of prayer and opening your heart to how God is calling you is one of the greatest gifts we can receive. In conversations with some of my colleagues and friends, we discussed how our prayer is needed now more than ever. We, the faithful and committed, are needed to help heal, strengthen, and respond to these challenges through our collective prayer.
Prayer during this time isn’t a radical suggestion. Or is it? Maybe it is exactly the solution needed, but the one we least understand in a time like this. Many of us might be searching for something more concrete, severe, or “just.” However, those thoughts indicate to me that we don’t fully comprehend the power prayer holds in our lives.
The type of prayer that I am referring to isn’t normal or routine. It is beyond reciting a common prayer before meals or a quick prayer before bed. The prayer we need requires our full commitment and presence—mind, body and heart. This type of prayer places yourself in the position of receiving and witnessing powerful, meaningful, and lasting relationship with God. Not to mention, staying focused on Christ, who is the only one we can rely on to heal, renew, and bring good out of the worst situations. I believe if we lead with prayer, we will get through this turbulent time and find ourselves in a place of comfort, healing, mercy and peace.
Katie Price is the Coordinator for Stewardship at the Cathedral. She can be contacted by calling the Parish Offices or emailing her directly at [email protected].