||Deacon Joe Hulway
||July 1, 2009
“Why are you testing me?”
They brought Him a denarius to look at and He asked: “Whose image and inscription is this?”
|We often have a lot of questions we would like to ask Jesus, but in the gospels we can also reflect on a lot of the questions that Jesus asks
of others, and indirectly of us. The Pharisees and Herodians were sent to try to entrap Jesus. Would He say it was okay to pay the census
tax to the Romans and upset the Jewish nationals, or would He say it was not okay and portray Himself as a revolutionary? The coin bore
the image of Tiberius Caesar. It was the coin of his government; it was just being used out of convenience by the Jews. Jesus tells them:
“Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” The coin was made in the likeness of Caesar, but we are
created in the image and likeness of God. We live in the world, but we should dedicate our lives to God.
You are much more likely to find images of George Washington in my wallet, than images of Benjamin Franklin, these days. And I get
concerned because of all the talk of new and higher taxes. Fortunately, unlike the times of Caesar, we live in a democracy and are
supposed to have some ability to influence how we are taxed. Sometimes we don’t seem to have a lot of control, however, but it is important
to vote and be involved in the political process to avoid having our tax dollars spent on immoral purposes such as funding abortions and
We may not have a lot of control regarding what goes on in Washington, but we do have control over what goes on in our own personal
lives; the moral decisions we make. We can choose to live according to God’s will and commandments and, in so doing, offer our lives
back to God; to repay to God what belongs to God and which was fashioned in His image. And as we do this, we will influence our families
and friends. These are the important things to do during our short sojourn on earth.
I may not like my tax burden today. I may worry about how taxes will affect my lifestyle twenty years from now. But fifty years from now, or one
thousand years from now, taxes won’t be important to me at all. All that will matter for eternity is what I have given back to God. Jesus said:
“Do not be afraid any longer, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your belongings and give alms.
Provide money bags for yourselves that do not wear out, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven that no thief can reach nor moth
destroy. For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” (Luke 12:32-34) What is the treasure you seek? Where is your heart?
|This whole subject of trusting God and seeking the right treasure is easier said than done. I worked with many of you who are now
struggling with surviving at General Motors, or who have lost your jobs suddenly. I have two younger brothers who work at Chrysler and face
uncertainty about their futures. I communicate with fellow retirees who wonder how the bankruptcy of GM will affect us. Recently I have
started attempting to reenter the job market now that the book writing appears to be wrapping up, although my first two pursuits have not
borne fruit. But I still wonder what God wants me to do when I grow up. I feel like He has placed another book idea on my heart; I’m still
trying to discern if it’s a true call or my imagination. Please pray for me.
June was once again the time to visit the Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio for our annual conference with our youth group. This
was our fourth trip. We had two teens that have attended all four years with us, some returning for their second or third time, and five making
their first trip. As tiring as the trip is for us as chaperones, it is also very energizing. The youth are encouraged to make good choices in life
and an effort is made to offer them healing support. And these goals are attained through a focus on the Eucharist and the Sacrament of
Reconciliation. The teens have fun singing and dancing, but they also drop to their knees in reverence before the Blessed Sacrament and
wait in long lines to go to Confession. Many lives are changed and it gladdens my heart.
|Homilies and Bulletin Articles
|There are four new homilies posted at the website.
Faith in Action
13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 28, 2009
Come to be Fed
Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ
June 14, 2009
We Are Family
Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity
June 7, 2009
Follow Your Own Path
Feast of Pentecost
May 31, 2009
|Status of the Book
|I submitted my manuscript to the publisher and now is a time for patient waiting. The production for the book is scheduled for August which
will begin with the editors starting their reviews for grammar and conceptual integrity. From what I understand, it is about a six month
I am really quite nervous about how it will be received, because I haven't gotten a lot of feedback along the way. Jenni likes it, but she's
biased, and I don't know how representative she is of the potential audience. Some who have graciously offered to review some of the
chapters have not provided feedback. I try to tell myself that they must be busy, but deep down I fear that they just don't have the heart to tell
me that my writing sucks. But I'm trying to put those fears aside and am actually making myself even a little more vulnerable. During this
month of waiting, the publisher suggested that I send the manuscript to people who may be willing to offer an endorsement for the back
cover. And so I have sent it to a couple of authors that I know and respect. They have agreed to read it, but will they agree to endorse it