In his best-selling book, “Emotional Intelligence,” author Daniel Goleman asserts that “since the beginning of the last century, each generation has lived with an increasing risk of suffering a major depression — not just sadness, but a paralyzing listlessness, dejection, self-pity, and an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.” Just reading that is very depressing, but it’s also very important. It’s important because it affects so many of us. The “overwhelming hopelessness” that Goleman describes results from the feeling that one is unable to overcome this impoverished emotional state — on either the individual or the global level.
According to Goleman, the “age of anxiety” that characterized the last century is now evolving into an “age of melancholy.” In “Man’s Search For Meaning,” the psychiatrist and educator Viktor Frankl claimed that this kind of bankrupt emotional state is widespread, and lamented the fact that 60% of his American students felt that they lived in a state of “inner emptiness — a void within themselves.” Yet the situation today is worse than it was in 1950 when Frankl wrote his book. A more recent survey of students entering American Colleges may help to explain why. Eighteen years after Frankl’s book was published, college freshmen were asked what their personal goals were: only 41 per cent said they wanted to make a lot of money. But the overwhelming majority also wanted to develop a meaningful philosophy of life. The pattern was significantly different recently when 75 per cent of college freshmen said their goal was to be very well-off financially, while only 41 per cent wanted to develop a meaningful philosophy of life — the exact opposite finding from the previous generation.
As more-and-more people come to perceive material wealth as an end in itself, and as more individual members of society are unhappy, society as a whole nears this same state of “emotional bankruptcy.” Sadly, the end result has created some of our most disturbing social problems including drug and alcohol abuse.
In our material world, we worship the material. Wealthy people are revered by virtue of their material possessions, as if net worth is an apt measure for how worthy a person is. We measure the worth of a day or a week according to how productive we are and how much we get done. As someone has said, “Society tells us the only thing that matters is matter — the only things that count are the things that can be counted.” And just reading that is very depressing. Yet, as Christians, we are a people of hope. As a people of hope, what matters most are the things that accrue to our “eternal account” as we read in today’ Gospel Lesson . . .
If we were to review your checkbook what would it say about your priorities? Would it paint the picture of a self-centered or an other-centered person? Would it inform a biography of a person focused on living well-off, or a follower of Christ intent on living a life of loving service to others? So we get on our knees and ask, “Good Lord, what must we do to share in the only True Source of the Good life?”
“Come, follow me,” says the Lord. Come follow Christ our Lord and place yourselves in one another’s service. Shift your focus from your bank account to your eternal account. If you do this, “you will have treasure heaven.”
Peace and Blessings!
LITURGICAL MUSIC CORNER
by our Music Director, Rebecca Brown
Oct. 11, 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain wisdom of heart.”
When my husband was confirmed as an adult, his prayer was this: “Lord, I’ll take any gift you want to give me, but if I have my preference, please give me wisdom”. (Wisdom is one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, conferred on us through the Sacrament of Confirmation). Our first reading today, from the book of Wisdom, states, “I preferred her to scepter and throne, and deemed riches nothing in comparison with her…because all gold, in view of her, is a little sand…” Let us pray today for wisdom, that gift which helps us to see the truth, to love the truth, and to act on the truth, for there are many things in today’s society which try to muddle and obscure the truths of God and draw us away from Him. May we always desire wisdom, more than gold!
Songs for the 9 am Mass:
Gathering Song: Holy Wisdom, Lamp of Learning # 521
Gloria in excelsis Deo, gloria, gloria!
Gloria in excelsis Deo, et in terra, terra pax.
Additional words to the Gloria are found in your Breaking Bread hymnal, p. 6.
Psalm 90: Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy.
Preparation of Gifts: More Than Gold
Lord, I love your commands, more than gold is your word, so precious to me.
Communion: In Every Age # 469
Recessional: Come Let Us Sing With Joy to the Lord ss
It’s time to start planning the Parade of Lights float! Scheduled for Dec. 5 (rain date Dec. 12) at 7:00 PM. We will be decorating at 5:00 at St. Hubert’s Hall. It’s lots of fun, hope you will join us! Here are some photos from last year’s float.