I myself will give them rest, says the Lord GOD.
The lost I will seek out,
the strayed I will bring back,
the injured I will bind up,
the sick I will heal . . .
Ezekiel 34: 15,16
My Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Grace and Peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Ezekiel prophesies God’s covenant. God will tend to us as a shepherd; He will not abandon us but provide us great care. God will give us the rest we need; He will search after us when we are lost and bring us back to Him. He will care for our wounds and heal them. God bestows His eternal promise of love for all the people.
As we live our lives, we come to better understand the profound meaning of God’s covenant with us. Of course, if asked, we would proclaim that we love God. This proclamation cannot be words alone; it must involve our own offering to love each other as God loves us. Catholic Charities of Central Florida (CCCF) is the visible outpouring of God’s love upon the earth, which yields a fruitful harvest as we care for His poor, His lonely, His forsaken, each other.
Within the pandemic environment, the staff of Catholic Charities of Central Florida assured God that not a single one is turned away, even though the need for services increased four-fold. The labor in His field to protect victims of human trafficking reaps a real home for one of these victims and a reunification with this person’s children. Shelter is offered, as fire or other natural disasters displace people. The Culture of Life becomes meaningful dialogue and understanding of the Church’s teaching as retreats, prayer and educational offerings convert hardened hearts. The celebration of life by providing moms with needed supplies for their children is a sacred sight to behold. Virtual counseling comforts those whose raw despair troubles the world.
In St. Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us of Ezekiel’s prophecy. When we hear Jesus’ questions, we may respond, “Lord, we see each one as Your child, the essence of sacredness and dignity. As You are with us, we minister to your people through Catholic Charities of Central Florida.”
During this month of November, we take up a special collection for Catholic Charities of Central Florida. I ask that you respond through your parish by noting your contribution for this life- giving organization or send your donation directly to Catholic Charities of Central Florida or go to this link, https://secure.qgiv.com/for/catchaocenflo/, and choose annual collection. My sisters and brothers in Christ, thank you for supporting the ministry of Catholic Charities of Central Florida through your prayers, financial donations, and volunteerism. As the body of Christ, our individual offerings become one to give God’s people rest.