Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Unemployment is a great excuse for not caring about others

This morning I received the monthly e-mail from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops about Catholic education. It includes links to excellent study guides for understanding the Pope's latest encyclical, Charity in Truth (Caritas In Veritate). They reminded me that I've been thinking too much about getting more money for my family and me and not enough about giving more to people whose needs are so much greater than ours.

My time and consciousness are filled these days with concerns about marketing our writing buisness and fitting our family budget to our reduced income. I'm still depressed and resentful from getting laid off in February. That doesn't leave much room for thoughts of others.

Of course, it's important that we make a decent living and save for retirement and college. But it's also important that my son see our faith and values at work in our response to our current financial troubles. If faith isn't central to our lives in difficult times, then just how faithful are we?

One of those lessons that I have to keep re-learning is that worry and fear over my situation in life drives out faith, hope and love. Now that's happening to us as a family. We devote our collective attention and talk to what needs to be done to improve our own lives. We haven't spent time talking about those in need and what we can do for them.

I pray for the faith to put our situation in God's hands so I'm freed to turn my attention to charity. That's the response I believe our son should see. I pray we're able to show it to him.

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