Sunday Scripture Readings for July 27, 2014 Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Hedglen   
Scripture Readings
Sunday, July 27, 2014
Seventeenth Sunday
in Ordinary Time

1 Kings 3:5, 7-12
Psalm 119:57, 72, 76-77, 127-130
Romans 8:28-30
Matthew 13:44-52 or
Matthew 13:44-46

Camp Fort Worth is a service ministry camp for teens in the Diocese of Fort Worth, Texas. In effect, it is a mission trip at home.

The teens sleep on the floor, attend daily Mass, and minister at local agencies that serve children, the elderly, and the homeless. They also build baby cribs that they donate to local pregnancy centers.

But Camp Fort Worth may never have happened if my life had gone differently.

Early in our marriage, my wife and I experienced six miscarriages in the span of two-and-a-half years. Those were years of tumultuous emotions: joy when a pregnancy test was positive and crushing sorrow when it was clear the pregnancy was over.

We saw specialists and did everything we could to sustain the pregnancies, but after the sixth attempt ended in another devastating loss -- and some consultation with our parish priest -- we decided it was time to stop trying.

When we were trying to get pregnant, I was a parish youth minister, and I had been looking for other jobs outside of ministry so I would be home more nights and weekends for the family. When we decided to stop trying, we asked God, what next?

One answer to that question was a new ministry venture.

A year later, I started Camp Fort Worth, and in the past 16 years, more than 2,000 teens have attended this camp with the vast majority experiencing a life-changing encounter with Jesus.

In this week's second reading, St. Paul states, "We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose." Whenever I hear the adage, "When life hands you lemons, make lemonade," I think of these words from St. Paul as saying that God is the master lemonade-maker.

For sure, my wife and I were devastated when we did not have children of our own, but that was not the end of the story. Had we had children, I may have left ministry, and Camp Fort Worth may never have happened. The thought boggles my mind.

None of us escapes this life without some heartache. But knowing that God is always working for my good helps me to press on through the sorrow to the waiting joy.

This column is offered in cooperation with The North Texas Catholic of Fort Worth, Texas.

Daily Scripture Readings Print E-mail
Sunday, Sep. 01, 2013 -- 10:21 AM
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Scripture readings from the United States Conference
of Catholic Bishops website.
Pope's Prayer Intentions: July Print E-mail
July General Intention

Sports. That sports may always be occasions of human fraternity and growth.

July Mission Intention
Lay Missionaries. That the Holy Spirit may support the work of the laity who proclaim the Gospel in the poorest countries.
Holy Days of Obligation Print E-mail

The following are Holy Days of Obligation for 2014.

Holy Days of Obligation Description
Wednesday, January 1
Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God
Thursday, May 29
Ascension Thursday
Friday, August 15
Solemnity of the Assumption
Saturday, November 1
All Saints (abrogated because it falls on Saturday)
Monday, December 8
Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Thursday, December 25
Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord (Christmas)
Prayer to St. Raphael Print E-mail

photo of Pilgrim Icon of St. Raphael

Glorious Archangel St. Raphael, great prince of the heavenly court, you are illustrious for your gifts of wisdom and grace. You are a guide of those who journey by land or sea or air, consoler of the afflicted, and refuge of sinners.

We beg you, assist us in all our needs and in all the sufferings of this life, as once you helped the young Tobias on his travels. Because you are the "medicine of God" we humbly pray you to heal the many infirmities of our souls and the ills that afflict our bodies.

We especially ask your guidance of our diocese as we journey toward the rebuilding of a cathedral bearing your name, and the great grace of purity to prepare us to be temples of the Holy Spirit. As our intercessor, beg the Blessed Trinity to prosper the work of our hands and, above all, to bring us, face-to-face, into their Holy presence.


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