Homily for the 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time, October 2, 2022

Today I would like to introduce to the parish our new Increased Offertory Program, titled “Growing as Family, Building our Future, Witnessing our Faith”. I believe this initiative will help us increase our trust in God almighty and in the plans God has for our parish and for our greater community.

First, I would like to express my heartfelt thankfulness for the sacrifice you make each week. I am overwhelmed by your generosity. Thank you for your past and present commitment to our Lord and to Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton parish. Thanks to your faith and generosity, the parish has been able to maintain many ministries in sacramental life, religious education for both children and adults, evangelization, and outreach.

As I begin my fourth month at Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton parish, I thank almighty God every day for the blessings bestowed on me at this parish. I am also overwhelmed by the love you have shown me. Thank you for your warm welcome.

In today’s gospel the Lord tells us about the importance of faith. He does it with the image of the mustard seed. To the Apostles’ petition of increasing their faith, the Lord indirectly tells them that he will do it if they would first provide something. That something does not have to be big; the size of a mustard seed (1/8th inch) would be enough! The Apostles needed to offer to the Lord trust, complete trust on him. That is all that the Lord asks from us. He takes it and makes it increase at his will. 

As we reflect on the virtue of faith today, I can bear witness that our parish is a faith-filled community that loves the Lord, his holy Church, and our brothers and sisters, especially those who are in need. After two and a half years of the pandemic, our parish is getting back to normal. Thanks be to God and to your generosity, the parish has been able to keep a full staff, whom I am proud to have as my collaborators in ministry.

In my short time at Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton I have witnessed the many ways our Lord is being brought into the lives of people in need through our charitable works of ministry. It was humbling to see the overwhelming response to the school supplies parishioners brought for the foster children in our county. I also had the joy of accompanying the Knights of Columbus when they delivered close to 100 coats to the Falcon Children’s Home three weeks ago.

The late English poet and Jesuit priest Gerard Manley Hopkins once was asked by his friend and non-believer Robert Bridges how he, Bridges, could believe. Hopkins simply answered: “Give alms”. Flannery O’Connor commented that what Hopkins was trying to say is that God is to be experienced in Charity (in the sense of love for the divine image in human beings). To give takes trust and faith. We do not always know the outcome of the gifts we share and we need to trust in God’s plans. Generosity is a wonderful way to grow in faith. Again, it is the small things we are willing to give to the Lord that the Lord takes and increases.


Some weeks ago I invited parishioners to donate financial resources, time, and skills to the painting of the walls and the replacement of the floors of the classrooms. The response was amazing and the classrooms now look so beautiful! Our sacrificial giving helps in the building of God’s kingdom and the Lord blesses us for our generosity.

Whether we give in big or small ways, almighty God multiplies our gifts as we put our trust in Him. Through trust in God, although we do not see, we believe. That is Faith. As we grow in the knowledge of God’s love and goodness, we also grow in our desire to give. And as our faith grows, the increase in faith is also experienced by others, like the children of our parish. The recipients of our acts of charity in turn praise and thank almighty God for their blessings. And so we all become links on a beautiful chain of faith thanks to our generosity. 

Finally, I would like to explain how you can participate in our Increased Offertory Program, again, entitled, “Growing as Family, Building our Future, Witnessing our Faith”. Each registered family of the parish will receive in the mail this week a special brochure. Please, review the contents of the brochure and reflect on your commitment and support of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish community and outreach. You will also receive a Commitment Card. If you find yourself ready to make a commitment immediately, please, do so by mailing the card to the parish or by bringing the card with you to church next weekend. There is an electronic version of the Commitment Card available on our Website for you to use as one more option.  

Next weekend October 8th and 9th we will have what we call our “Commitment Weekend” at all Masses. A parishioner will give a short presentation on how our parish has helped him or her practice his or her faith and the joy he or she receives by being involved in parish ministries and or programs. I would like to encourage your attendance next weekend for this Commitment event.

I would also like to ask you to pray for the parish and the success of our increased offertory program. This program is an important endeavor in the parish and everyone’s prayers and sacrifices are needed. I would like to finally ask you to participate in the program by making a commitment to ensure our parish’s future and the work we do in the community.

Please, make a commitment, and if possible consider an increase to what you are currently donating. Remember that what we give generously, freely with trust in the Lord, is what He abundantly multiplies for the benefit of the entire community. “Growing as Family, Building our Future, Witnessing our Faith” is team work which must be sustained by the grace of God almighty.

Let us humbly ask our Lord to grant us the grace of increasing our love and commitment to him and his holy Church. Thank you for your attention and may the Lord bless you abundantly!