Saint Paul today exhorts the followers of Christ in Thessolonika to look to his example and follow him in the fleshing out of the Gospel message. He points out that he has come with a parent's love, instructing and encouraging the living of good and upright, holy and inspiring lives. He has not come to create an obligation or an unrealistic expectation, but rather to exhort those who come to know him or of him that the way of Christ is worth their time and energy. He says that they should follow his example, embrace his charism of selfless service, and live in the love of Christ. His message to that local Church is a timeless message for the whole Church.
This morning before Mass Sister Mary Philip, a parishioner and a Sister of Charity of Seton Hill in Greensburg, reminded me that today is the birthday of Elizabeth Ann Bailey Seton, our patron and the Sisters' foundress. We have three of the Sisters of Charity living within our parish who are members of our parish family. When I look at them, and see the lives of service and dedication found within the lives of their Religious Sisters, I see the charism of their founder. They have come to know Mother Seton and have embraced the life of faith and love and service that she shared with her Sisters, and in doing so, have given us an example of living that embraces those wonderful charisms. I, for one, am very grateful for these good women of faith.
And happy birthday, Mother Seton!