I once had a priest tell me, “If you want good friends, you first have to be a good friend.” Since I heard this, I have tried to be a good friend when my friends call on me. That has included staying up late with friends who are going through a difficult time, dropping everything I’m doing to pick up someone who went walking and then got caught in the rain, and being vulnerable and asking for forgiveness when I have done something to offend a friend.
Q. You wrote about gossip earlier. But don’t people need to know certain “secret” things? Wouldn’t it be irresponsible of me to keep some things to myself?
During the Passover, after carrying out the instructions God revealed to Moses, the Israelites await their salvation. In their journey to the Promised Land, God reveals himself to his people, but this means the Israelites are called to adhere to the covenant. When they are faithful to the Word of God, they receive abundant blessings. When they turn away, they experience hardships, their enemies prevail, and they’re unhappy.
Q. Long ago, as a child, I remember saying prayers aloud for “the conversion of Russia” after every Mass. Why, in our troubled world, are we not doing the same thing now for Islamic extremists, who are surely in need of our prayers? And where would such a directive come from?
It is often remarked in both the secular and Catholic media today that society’s religious beliefs are declining. The Church has been asking the question these last years about what can be done to try to stem the tide of this alarming trend. Her answer so far has been to call for a “new evangelization.”
Q. I feel like God is going to call me to do something big, but I don’t know what. How can I make sure that I don’t miss what he will call me to do? And what can I do in the meantime?
Each week, Bettina spends two hours volunteering at her community’s free clinic, which offers a range of medical services for the working poor. She’s not a medical volunteer, but goes to the clinic every Wednesday to greet and take information from clients and potential clients to determine or confirm their eligibility for services.