Herald Journal Columns
July 7, 2003 Herald Journal
Pastor's Column

Perseverance requires a long and wide view of life

By Rev. Paul Wolf, Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Winsted

As we come upon the nation's celebration of the Fourth of July, we as a Catholic church have just celebrated the Feast of Saint Peter and Paul, June 29. I believe they both speak to the reality of history, perseverance, and hope.

At the very beginning of our history as a faith community and as a nation, many people faced great difficulties. Two men of our faith community, as many other for our nation, stand out for their perseverance in their faith, Peter and Paul.

These two faced many difficulties in their work of spreading faith in Jesus Christ. And they refused to give in or up.

Perseverance requires a long and wide view of life. We must be willing to work at things even though we might not live to see the end results of our work.

To do this, we have to see ourselves as part of a larger reality ­ a community of people who believe in a cause, and who are willing to work in the most difficult or hopeless situations so that, in the future, others might benefit from our work.

One great obstacle to a persevering life is the need to see immediate results. This is certainly one of the negative aspects of our current culture. If it can't happen today, we ask 'why not?' But we all know that in our lifetimes, we will not see the results of many things that we do.

We often can't see the results of our acts of love and faith. There are so many things we do that have far reaching and long lasting effects, but we never get to see those results.

Believing makes continual demands on us. Loving our enemies, refusing to criticize or judge, putting our prejudices aside, treating everyone fairly, and sharing our money and possessions with those who have less ­ these and many other challenges of our faith can only be lived when we have a firm conviction that this is the way Jesus calls us to live.

An invitation is given to individuals who are looking for a challenge and a conviction of life. Seek out a faith community and commit yourself to the person of Jesus Christ, or at least come and find out about Him.

The world that we live in has so few answers to the many issues of life. To fully engage in the life that we are meant to live, we must engage the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; the God who made us, the God who saved us, and the God that continues to work with us.

This invitation is not for the weak of heart, mind, body, or soul; but for those who might persevere in their lives of difficulties and challenges. Come see and partake; become strong in your faith, persevering ever in the Lord.

As those who have gone before us marked with great and persevering faith in their convictions, may we strive for a wider view and build on our past to a greater future for our church, community, nation and world until we are in the presence of God, seeing Him face to face.

An invitation to engage the life we have been given, join in and make a difference ­ a result that you may not see, but in perseverance will make a difference in the future for our church, community, nation, and world.

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