Thanks for the pictures Mr. Jason Ross!
VATICAN CITY | Pope Francis listed 15 “ailments” of the Vatican Curia during his annual Christmas greetings to the cardinals, bishops and priests who run the central administration of the 1.2-billion strong Catholic Church. Here’s the list.
1) Feeling immortal, immune or indispensable. “A Curia that doesn’t criticize itself, that doesn’t update itself, that doesn’t seek to improve itself is a sick body.”
2) Working too hard. “Rest for those who have done their work is necessary, good and should be taken seriously.”
3) Becoming spiritually and mentally hardened. “It’s dangerous to lose that human sensibility that lets you cry with those who are crying, and celebrate those who are joyful.”
4) Planning too much. “Preparing things well is necessary, but don’t fall into the temptation of trying to close or direct the freedom of the Holy Spirit, which is bigger and more generous than any human plan.”
5) Working without coordination, like an orchestra that produces noise. “When the foot tells the hand, ‘I don’t need you’ or the hand tells the head ‘I’m in charge.'”
6) Having ‘spiritual Alzheimer’s.’ “We see it in the people who have forgotten their encounter with the Lord … in those who depend completely on their here and now, on their passions, whims and manias, in those who build walls around themselves and become enslaved to the idols that they have built with their own hands.”
7) Being rivals or boastful. “When one’s appearance, the color of one’s vestments or honorific titles become the primary objective of life.”
8) Suffering from ‘existential schizophrenia.’ “It’s the sickness of those who live a double life, fruit of hypocrisy that is typical of mediocre and progressive spiritual emptiness that academic degrees cannot fill. It’s a sickness that often affects those who, abandoning pastoral service, limit themselves to bureaucratic work, losing contact with reality and concrete people.”
9) Committing the ‘terrorism of gossip.’ “It’s the sickness of cowardly people who, not having the courage to speak directly, talk behind people’s backs.”
10) Glorifying one’s bosses. “It’s the sickness of those who court their superiors, hoping for their benevolence. They are victims of careerism and opportunism, they honor people who aren’t God.”
11) Being indifferent to others. “When, out of jealousy or cunning, one finds joy in seeing another fall rather than helping him up and encouraging him.”
12) Having a ‘funereal face.’ “In reality, theatrical severity and sterile pessimism are often symptoms of fear and insecurity. The apostle must be polite, serene, enthusiastic and happy and transmit joy wherever he goes.”
13) Wanting more. “When the apostle tries to fill an existential emptiness in his heart by accumulating material goods, not because he needs them but because he’ll feel more secure.”
14) Forming ‘closed circles’ that seek to be stronger than the whole. “This sickness always starts with good intentions but as time goes by, it enslaves its members by becoming a cancer that threatens the harmony of the body and causes so much bad — scandals — especially to our younger brothers.”
15) Seeking worldly profit and showing off. “It’s the sickness of those who insatiably try to multiply their powers and to do so are capable of calumny, defamation and discrediting others, even in newspapers and magazines, naturally to show themselves as being more capable than others.”
We are very excited to present Beth Moore’s Sacred Secrets teaching at this year’s retreat. Join us as we discover the power and positives of secrets. Find out what happens when we let God teach us “wisdom in the secret heart” (Ps. 51:6, ESV). The teaching this year is sure to make you excited about a closer walk with Jesus. Fellowship with friends and a weekend at the coast is simply icing on the cake. Such fun to be had!
The cost is $55 this year and will include a Sacred Secrets study journal, weekend beach lodging and four meals. Scholarships available!!
Sign up ASAP! Choose the blessing!
There are flyers and sign up sheet on the table by the office.
Rebekah Vanloo and her friend Lauren left early this morning for their medical mission trip. Please keep the girls and their entire team in your prayers this week as they are serving and loving the people of Haiti. Pray for their personal health and protection, the strength to endure any challenges, and for each sweet heart to be filled with the love and compassion of Jesus for each other and every person they encounter. To God be the glory!
After breakfast (courtesy of chef Dougan), we will fellowship and spend time in the word discussing our challenges in the world. A $5.00 donation will be taken to help with food costs. If you have any questions, please see Norm Matscheck or call the church office.
Many thanks to all who packed Christmas shoe boxes this year for Operation Christmas Child. Joyce Krull delivered 77 boxes last month from our church to the donation center. Thank you for giving to the Lord! “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:38